Texas flails, A&M sails, Big 12 and SMU

February, 6, 2010
Saturday's 80-71 loss at Oklahoma (13-9, 4-4 Big 12) on Wayman Tisdale Day would seem to virtually eliminate Texas from regular-season title contention, and leaves no guarantee that the reeling Longhorns (19-4, 5-3) will even claim a top-four spot and automatic first-round bye in the Big 12 tournament a little more than a month from now in Kansas City.

That's how strange things have become for the burnt orange, who are playing more like burnt toast.

No. 10 Texas trailed by 18 at halftime and throughout the game missed point-blank bunnies and seemed to create new ways to lose as Oklahoma star Willie Warren played 16 minutes because of a sprained ankle and scored just three points. Along with their continued struggles on shots near the rim, Texas' free-throw situation is beyond laughable and perhaps beyond repair. Saturday they made 10-of-27. Senior forward Damion James missed nine of his 13 attempts. He finished with 12 points.

The Horns dropped to 5-3 in conference, three games behind No. 1 Kansas (22-1, 8-0), and a half-game back of Texas A&M (6-3) -- which won a nail-biter at home over No. 24 Baylor (4-4) -- and No. 11 Kansas State (6-3) -- which pulled out a tough road win at Iowa State (2-6). Texas is tied with Missouri (5-3) for third place.

The Horns, who've allowed 77.0 points in their last six games, going 2-4, get the Jayhawks next on Big Monday (ESPN, 8 p.m.) and two games later play at Mizzou, which lost at home for the first time in 33 games earlier in the week to A&M.

*The Aggies continue to get tremendous leadership from guard Donald Sloan, who had 20 points, five rebounds and four assists in the Aggies' big home win, 78-71, over Baylor. The game was close to the end as A&M pulled out its third down-to-the-wire home win. Senior forward Bryan Davis scored a season-high 22 points and grabbed eight rebounds in 34 minutes as he outplayed Baylor big man Ekpe Udoh, who had 19 points and four rebounds, plus a key late turnover, in 39 minutes.

*John Roberson and Mike Singletary combined for 50 points for Texas Tech, which got a must-have home win over slumping Oklahoma State (4-5). Tech (3-5) held Big 12 scoring leader James Anderson to 10 points.

*In Conference USA, SMU's 66-48 win was its first at Tulane. It was a significant win for the Mustangs (11-11, 4-4) after a comeback at Southern Miss on Tuesday fell short to snap their four-game losing streak. The win keeps the Ponies, tied for fifth in the 12-team C-USA, on a roll. It's just the second time this season that SMU has been able to keep one loss from becoming two. Derek Williams scored 18 points and five assists, Papa Dia had 17 points and 16 rebounds, and Robert Nyakundi from Arlington, the Ponies' lone significant local product, finished with 14 points and six rebounds.

Next up is a big test back at home against conference co-leader UTEP (16-5, 7-1) at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.



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