Weekly College Basketball Roundup

Houston drops its first, Texas stumbles, Tech continues to roll

Chris Beard and Tech are on a mean roll. Sarah Stier/Getty Images

TEXAS LONGHORNS (10-7) 2-3 Big XII

Last week (0-3):
L- @ Oklahoma State 61-58, L- Texas Tech 68-62, L- @ Kansas 80-78

This week: Saturday vs. Oklahoma

Any momentum Texas had going into this week after a 2-0 start to Big XII play is out the window after a horrid second week of conference play. First, the Horns dropped a heartbreaker to Oklahoma State on the road, 61-58. You don't have to dig deep into a box score to find out what led to Texas' downfall. Texas shot 2-22 from 3-point range in the game, including a miss with a chance to tie the game at the buzzer. Kerwin Roach was the leading scorer for Texas with 18. Things didn't get better with Texas Tech coming into Austin. The Horns dropped a 68-62 battle with the Red Raiders, giving Tech their first win in Austin since 1996. Roach had 17 points in the loss. Texas' biggest issue in this one was turnovers, as the defensive-minded Red Raiders forced 14 in the game. Finally, the Horns battled hard and came up just short against Kansas in Phog Allen Fieldhouse, dropping their third straight by a final of 80-78. Texas shot the ball well, won the rebounding battle 38-31, and only had 6 turnovers, but it wasn't enough. Kansas only committed 4 turnovers all night. 5 Longhorns hit double digits, led by Matt Coleman III's 16 points. Texas will look to get back on track this week against Oklahoma.

TEXAS A&M AGGIES (7-7) 1-2 SEC

Last week (1-1):
L- @ Kentucky 85-74, W- @ Alabama 81-80

This week: Wednesday vs. Auburn, Saturday vs. Mizzou

The Aggies started well against Kentucky, but couldn't hold off the talented Wildcats, losing 85-74 in Lexington. The game was closer than the score indicates, with the Aggies shooting nearly as well as the Cats all game. The 19 turnovers for Texas A&M were the deal breaker, though. TJ Starks and Jay Jay Chandler both had 18 points for the Aggies. The Aggies came back strong with a buzzer-beater win over Alabama, 81-80. Starks struggled mightily in this one, getting his 12 points on 4-17 shooting. He came through when it mattered most, though, banking in a game winning 3 as time expired. Josh Nebo was near perfect, shooting 10-12 en route to a season-high 21 points. The Aggies get Auburn and Mizzou at home this week.

HOUSTON COUGARS (16-1) 3-1 American

Last week (1-1): L- @ Temple 73-69, W- Wichita State 79-70

This week: Wednesday @ SMU, Saturday @ South Florida

Houston tasted defeat for the first time this season, dropping a 73-69 battle with Temple. A late charge call sealed the win for Temple. The game was only the 3rd road game all season for Houston, who has a nation's best home winning streak at 29 games. Senior Breaon Brady's 19 points kept the Cougars in the game on a night when their top two scorers, Armani Brooks and Corey Davis, combined for 6 of 23 shooting. The Coogs bounced back with a 79-70 win over Wichita State. Davis led the way with 20 points in the win, with Brooks adding in 14 more. Houston held Wichita to just 39% shooting in the win. Houston hits the road for matchups against SMU and South Florida this week.

RICE OWLS (7-11) 2-3 CUSA

Last week (0-2): L- @ UTSA 95-79, L- @ UTEP 65-64

This week: Saturday @ North Texas

Rice followed up their first back to back wins in two years with a week of back to back losses. The Owls dropped their game at UTSA, 95-79. Rice shot just 25% from 3-point distance and turned the ball over 15 times. Chris Mullins and Quentin Miller-Brown each had 14 for the Owls in defeat. That was followed up dramatic 65-64 loss to UTEP. The Owls hit a 3-pointer to take a 1 point lead with just 1.5 seconds left. The inbound was knocked out of bounds, so UTEP had a chance to inbound again with .5 seconds left. The 3/4 court inbound was on the money, as was the turnaround jumper that followed it, giving the Miners a 1 point win. Jack Williams led the Owls with 15 points and 11 rebounds in the loss. Rice plays at North Texas on Saturday.

BAYLOR BEARS (10-6) 2-2 Big XII

Last week (1-1):
W- Iowa State 73-70, L- Kansas 73-68, W- Oklahoma State 73-69

This week: Saturday vs. Texas Tech, Monday @ West Virginia

Baylor went 2-1, but their biggest loss of the week won't show up in the standings. Baylor's 2nd leading scorer, Tristan Clark, was lost for the season to a knee injury. He scored 16 points in the 73-70 win over Iowa State. Makai Mason led the team with a season-high 25 points. Mason hit 5 free throws in the last minute to seal the win, and the Bears were 17-20 from the stripe overall. The Bears lost their other game this week, dropping a hard fought 73-68 matchup with Kansas. The Bears cut a 23 point Kansas lead to just 4 with under a minute remaining. Freshman Jared Butler led the Bears with 14 points in defeat. Baylor got a massive showing from King McClure to pace them to a 73-69 win over Oklahoma State on Monday. McClure had 29-points 9 rebounds and 4 assists in the win. He knocked down 7 3-pointer's on the night. The Bears as a team were 15-25 from deep. Jared Butler, starting for the injured Clark, had 16 points in the win. Baylor gets Texas Tech on Saturday and a road trip to West Virginia on Monday.

TCU HORNED FROGS (12-3) 1-2 Big XII

Last week (1-0):
L- @ Kansas 77-68, L- @ Oklahoma 76-74

This week: Tuesday vs. WVU, Saturday @ Kansas State

TCU had its worst week of the season, dropping two road games to drop their conference record to 1-2. First, they lost 77-68 to Kansas in Lawrence. The Frogs killed themselves in this one, turning the ball over 20 times in the loss. The Frogs had five players in double digits, led by RJ Nembhard's 14 points. Things didn't get much better in Norman, OK, where the Frogs blew a 6 point halftime lead and fell to Oklahoma 76-74. Kouat Noi was the lone offensive bright spot for TCU, scoring 30 points on 10-14 shooting. The rest of the Frogs shot 15-58 from the field. TCU gets West Virginia and Kansas State next week.

TEXAS TECH RED RAIDERS (15-1) 4-0 Big XII

Last week (2-0): W- vs. Oklahoma 66-59, W- @ Texas 68-62

This week: Wednesday vs. Iowa State, Saturday @ Baylor

Texas Tech again trailed at halftime, and again Jarrett Culver led them back to a victory, 66-59 over Oklahoma. Culver had 23 points and 13 rebounds to lead the Red Raiders back from a halftime deficit. Tech's dominant defense held the Sooners to just 32% shooting and 31% from 3-point distance. They followed it up with a win in Austin, downing the Longhorns 68-62. Matt Mooney led the charge with 22 points. The Red Raiders forced 14 turnovers and only gave up 9. Texas Tech, now 8th in the polls, gets Iowa State and Baylor this week.

SMU MUSTANGS (11-5) 3-1 American

Last week (1-1):
L- @ UConn 76-64, W- Tulsa 77-57

This week: Wednesday vs. Houston, Saturday @ Memphis

SMU started their game at UConn well, but shot their way out of it and ended up getting beat 76-64. SMU shot 23-66 and 3-23 from distance in the loss. Jimmy Whitt, Jr. shot 9-18 for 20 points and 10 rebounds in the loss. Things improved dramatically for the Ponies against Tulsa, winning in blowout fashion, 77-57. Jahmal McMurray led the way scoring 22 points on 7-12 shooting, including 6-11 from 3-point range. McMurray added another double-double scoring 10 points and hauling in 10 rebounds. SMU held the Golden Hurricane to just 36% shooting in the victory. SMU gets Houston and Memphis this week.

LSU TIGERS (12-3) 2-0 SEC

Last week (2-0):
W- Alabama 88-79, W- @ Arkansas 94-88 (OT)

This week: Tuesday @ Ole Miss, Saturday vs. South Carolina

LSU looked well rested after their week off. They started off with an 88-79 win over Alabama. LSU jumped out to a big lead and never looked back. The Tigers hit 10-15 from long range, and hit 49 percentfrom the field overall. Tremont Waters was 6-9 shooting and led the Tigers with 19 points. Kavell Bigby-Williams had 14 points, 13 rebounds and 5 blocks as well. They followed that up with a solid road win against Arkansas, 94-88. Freshman Naz Reid was dominant, with 27 points and 7 rebounds on 10-12 shooting. Again the difference in this game came at the 3-point line, where the Tigers shot 40% and the Hogs shot 19%. LSU goes to Ole Miss on Tuesday and hosts South Carolina on Saturday.

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12. RICE

They did it, they actually did it! They beat someone, a Division I program at that, and even better an in conference rival. This is great news for the Rice Owls, and just as much for Mike Bloomgren who has to feel a massive weight come off his shoulders for getting a win this year. He needs one more to tie last year's win record and two more with two games left to show progress. Wow this program has a long way to go, remember a few years back when they were conference champs with 10 wins? I know it was a while back now but man, this program is thrilled to a get a win right now and there was a time not too long ago when they were one of the better teams in this conference. They host The Mean Green this week and they need to win out if they want to show growth from last year.

11. UTEP


UTEP lost to the UAB Blazers and now are on the road to New Mexico State University. Rice won so the pressure is officially on. Previously a loss to Rice next week meant only a tie for worst team in Texas but now a loss would actually make The Miners the 12th worst team in Texas. Someone please have some pride and play to win that game next week. And this week too, please, seriously.

10. NORTH TEXAS

If there was ever a team to have on the schedule post a bad loss then a bye week on a schedule it would be Rice University, right? You would take Rice as one of the worst teams in the country this year and you'd say yes right away if someone offered you them on a silver platter. Like if the waiter brought the wrong dish to your table but it looked better is how excited you would be to see Rice on the schedule after the last few weeks, EXCEPT, Rice just won their first game of the year and may be feeling themselves a little bit.

9. TEXAS STATE

Troy crushing Texas State is a massive blow to the season for The Bobcats. It probably isn't going to get much better as they face Appalachian State Mountaineers who are ranked No. 24 right now and are looking to keep on winning. All of the losing is why they dropped down to ninth place and there's probably going to be a little more dropping before it's all said and done.

8. UTSA

The Roadrunners need to stay focused and just keep an eye on the goal of finishing strong and not quitting on this year. Florida Atlantic comes to town and they are looking to rub salt into any wounds UTSA brings into this game.

7. TEXAS TECH

In a stunning loss to TCU, Texas Tech was yet again close to winning a big game but this time late in the fourth quarter gave up the lead. This will be the season that got away and should be both a statement of perseverance and "almost." Football is a game of inches and Al Pacino speeches and this is just another example of that. Imagine the scenario where Tech won those close games Baylor, Kansas and TCU, where would they be both nationally and here on this list? Tough to say. Kansas State comes to town and the close calls are likely to continue.

6. HOUSTON

Memphis put a hurting on Houston and it was a bad one. Memphis came to town and did what a lot of teams have done this year, punched Houston in the mouth and they failed to respond in any real way. The losses are piling up and now Houston is going on the road to visit the Tulsa Golden Hurricanes. They are likely to lose this game being on the road against a team that's about as good as they are, so The Cougars are struggling.

5. TCU

A close win is better than a close loss and TCU came out of Lubbock with a close win. With three different loss differentials being a touchdown or less, TCU's whole season much like Tech's will be measured by the close losses rather than the wins. But you can't go backwards and TCU has to travel to Oklahoma and find a way to win if they want to stay bowl eligible.

4. TEXAS

Texas is now officially in trouble. They've lost all kinds of games they shouldn't have and now are going to Baylor after losing to Iowa State University. It's hard to imagine a scenario where this team pulls it together and actually beats Baylor, but they need to. They need to get it together and start playing good football or they'll go into next weekend.

3. TEXAS A&M

Coming off a great win against South Carolina, Texas A&M now tries its hat in the role of spoiler as they travel to Georgia and try and ruin the Bulldogs season. Ultimately there's a real chance they could pull off a sneaky win here and derail Georgia's shot at an SEC championship game but it isn't the best bet in the world. A&M has struggled this year in big games having lost to Clemson, Alabama and Auburn.

2. SMU

The Mustangs were in the stables this week with a bye but it gave the President of the AAC time to complain that the College Football Playoff Selection Committee has undervalued his entire conference since it was created. He's right, they have been undervalued but not by enough to whine about it and not by enough to actually make a stink. A few weeks ago I was feeling bad about having A&M as low as I did because yes they were losing but they were playing better teams and I looked up all the rankings, strengths of schedules etc. The fact is simply this, SMU doesn't play the kind of competition that A&M did and even though they were winning, they weren't beating anyone of merit. They still haven't and there's no getting around that really. However this week they go to Navy and they need to win to even stay ranked.

1. BAYLOR

They had been playing close games and coming out on top and usually that makes a team happy to get a big lead, and usually a team that's been winning and gets a big lead knows what to do with it and usually a team in a must win knows they can't mess up. All of that being said, they were up early, they were up big and they blew it. There's no getting around it, this kills any chance of back dooring the playoffs, with wins over Oklahoma and then hypothetically beating Texas this week would have made Baylor a real force with only a few weeks left on the whole thing. Instead they let Oklahoma post a record comeback and then when it's all said and done they have Texas this week. The season is slipping through their fingers like sand in an hourglass.

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