After watching his team’s 16 point lead cut to 5 midway through the 2nd half, Flip Pressey took over. Â Pressey scored 7 straight points, including a crowd igniting dunk off a steal, which put the final nail in the coffin for the Tigers’ win. Â To be quite honest, the game was over as soon as it started. Missouri hit 8 of their first 11 3 point attempts in the first half to open up a double digit lead. A lead they would never relinquish. J’Covan Brown’s sweet shooting got Texas within 5 midway through the 2nd half, but Missouri responded to the Texas run eventually ran away with the game.
The Tigers came into the game as one of the best shooting teams in the country, and they lived up to that today. They shot 54% from inside the arc and 47% from 3. What makes their hot shooting even more impressive is the fact that most of their shots were contested. What was even more impressive was the fact that the Tigers stuck together and continued to play hard while Texas had the momentum midway through the 2nd half. Â They seemed unfazed. Â Maybe that comes with experience. Maybe they just knew they were better than the Longhorns. Â Whatever it is, Texas needs to learn from what they saw at Mizzou Arena. All season long, the Longhorns have rushed shots, failed to run plays properly, fought over the ball, pouted during timeouts and other things good teams don’t do. Yes they are young, but so is Kentucky. Â There is no doubt the Longhorns have the skill to win a lot of games in the Big 12. There is no doubt they have the physical toughness to win a lot games in the Big 12. The question is do they have the mental toughness they need to win a lot of games in the Big 12? From what I’ve seen so far, the answer is no.
What Lies Ahead For Texas:
1 down, 5 to go. Texas has to regroup and regroup quickly, as they will head to Manhattan to take on Kansas State on Wednesday. A Kansas State team that will no doubt be ready to play after losing to Oklahoma on Saturday. This will undoubtedly be the Longhorns’ biggest test of the season so far. Yeah, the Dean Dome was rocking last month, but it will be twice as loud in Manhattan on Wednesday. If the Horns start the game playing timidly and scared like they have started every game away from the Erwin Center this year, it will get ugly fast.
Keys to Success For Texas:
– Run more plays for J’Covan Brown: Brown is averaging 19 points per game right now, but it’s evident that the freshmen are not ready to help out to the extent that they need to be right now. He is capable of scoring 30 a night, so let him.
– Play Sterling Gibbs more: Sterling Gibbs needs to get more playing time. Â He changes the game when he comes in. He did a good job at UNC when Kabongo was benched, I don’t understand why his minutes are so limited. Kabongo is getting better at the point, so Gibbs could play off the ball. The way Julien Lewis and Sheldon McClellan have been shooting the ball of late, it’s not a bad idea. Gibbs is a good defender, and he could have been used on Pressey yesterday.
– Play McClellan at the 4: We aren’t getting anything from Bond and very little from Wangmene. It’s time to try something else. By having McClellan or Holmes on the court, Texas will have versatile 4s out on the floor at all times. McClellan could also use his speed advantage to get bigger 4s in foul trouble.
– No more zone this season: It got us torched against Oregon State, NC State, UNC and Missouri.
– Stop rushing shots: It started in the North Carolina game and it has continued ever since. I don’t know whether they are scared of getting their shots blocked or it’s just bad luck. Whatever it is, they need to stop doing it.
– More post touches for Clint Chapman: He has been very effective when he gets the ball in the post. Â He plays better defense when he scores, he gets everybody excited, and our guards are able to get better shots. It’s a no brainer.
– J’Covan Brown became the 33rd player in UT history to score over 1,000 points. Brown came into the game needing 17 to get to 1,000. He led all scorers with 34 points.
– Myck Kabongo finished the game with 12 points and 10 assists for his first career double double.