The No.10-ranked Texas Longhorns men’s basketball team is now in sole possession of first place in the Big 12 after a 76-71 win over No.11 Baylor on Monday night.
Texas led by nine points — its largest lead of the game — with just over seven minutes left in the first half, but an Adam Flagler three sparked a 12-4 run from Baylor that eventually cut the deficit to two.
The Longhorns used a 6-1 start in the second half to increase their lead to seven with 10:10 remaining in the game.
Baylor cut the lead to two points again and came within one point of tying the game as guard Keyonte George was fouled on a layup and converted the subsequent free throw with 50 seconds left.
Texas guard Marcus Carr knocked down a three on the ensuing possession to put the lead back at four. George missed a three-point attempt on the next possession, and Baylor was forced to foul.
Sir’Jabari Rice, the game’s leading scorer with 21 points, made both free throws to put away the game. Timmy Allen added 18 points for Texas.
Guard LJ Cryer was Baylor’s leading scorer with 19 points.
WHAT TO KNOW
— This was Texas’ first win against Baylor since February 2019. It was also the 13th consecutive sellout crowd for the Longhorns.
— Texas is off to its best start since 2010-11 and is 11-3 under interim coach Rodney Terry and 4-0 at home against AP Top 20 foes this season.
— The loss was Baylor’s first since January 7, snapping a six-game winning streak.
— The Bears are now two games behind the Longhorns in the Big 12 standings, with several teams between them.
BY THE NUMBERS
— Rice scored over 20 points for the 14th time in his career and the second time this season. It was also his 70th career game scoring double figures.
— Allen recorded his 106 double-digit scoring game in 141 career games.
— The Texas bench outscored the Baylor bench 30-6. The Longhorns shot 53.8 % from the field while holding Baylor to just 34.4 %.
— The Baylor trio of LJ Cryer, Adam Flagler, and Keyonte George, the Big 12’s top-scoring trio, finished the game with 47 combined points. The three have the sixth-highest combined scoring average in college basketball and the second-highest among power conference teams.
— Texas interim coach Rodney Terry on his team’s upcoming schedule and “must-win” games in the Big 12:
“We take it one game at a time. We had 40 minutes in front of us; we had a really, really good Baylor team coming in here that was well-coached … That’s all we really had on our minds today in terms of trying to finish out January.”
“We call it ‘the grind,'” he continued. “We’ve embraced it all year long.”
— Texas (18-4, 7-2 in the Big 12) plays No.6 Kansas State (18-3, 6-2) in a clash for first place in Austin at 3 p.m. CT on Saturday. Baylor (16-6, 5-4) hosts Texas Tech (12-10, 1-8) at noon CT that same day.