No. 10 Texas and struggling-but-dangerous Texas Tech will have different things to prove but the same goal in mind when they square off Saturday in Austin, Texas.
The Longhorns (14-2, 3-1 Big 12) will be trying to show they can expand on the momentum gleaned from back-to-back-gritty wins, the latest of which was a stunning 79-75 come-from-behind home victory over No. 17 TCU on Wednesday.
Texas trailed by as many as 18 points with 2:57 left in the first half and overcame a 12-point deficit with 9:36 remaining by producing a sterling final four minutes.
Marcus Carr hit a 3-pointer with 1:01 to play to give the Longhorns their first lead, 76-73, since the opening minutes of the game. Sir’Jabari Rice grabbed three crucial rebounds down the stretch and converted three of four free throws in the final six seconds to seal the comeback win.
“The game is never over,” said Texas interim coach Rodney Terry, who is 7-1 since taking the helm from the fired Chris Beard. “In the Big 12, we are going to be in games like this all season long. You keep working it and put yourself back in position again. I thought our guys gave themselves a chance to do that.”
It was the largest comeback for Texas since it overcame a 22-point deficit with 7:54 remaining during a 92-86 overtime home win over Oklahoma on Feb. 27, 2013.
Timmy Allen led the Longhorns with 17 points in the win while Rice added 15, all in the second half, Dylan Disu hit for 14 points on 7-of-7 shooting and Carr tallied 11.
That win means nothing for Texas unless it builds on it, but Texas Tech will have a lot to say about that.
The Red Raiders (10-6, 0-4) head to Austin after a head-shaking 84-50 loss at No. 14 Iowa State on Tuesday. Texas Tech has dropped four straight games after never having lost back-to-back contests since the 2020-21 season. Tech sits, uncharacteristically, at the bottom of the conference standings.
“Patience is gone — we are in urgency mode,” Red Raiders coach Mark Adams said after the blowout loss. “We’re going to have to make some major changes — mainly in effort, attitude and toughness. This is a wake-up call.”
De’Vion Harmon led the Red Raiders with 14 points in the setback, with Pop Isaacs adding 10 as Texas Tech shot just 36.5 percent from the floor and made only five of its 26 3-point attempts.
The Red Raiders will look to avoid a 0-5 start to their conference schedule for the first time since 2015 when that team started 0-6.
“We have to match our opponent’s intensity,” Adams said. “We have to go as hard, if not harder, than them. We’ve been inconsistent in conference games with our effort. It starts with effort and playing together as a team.”
Texas Tech has won the past four meetings against the Longhorns in Austin and has captured nine of the past 11 overall games with its longtime rival.
–Field Level Media