To kick things off how about a few quick notes on this so called "rivalry" between Kansas and Texas. We can debate this all night long but I think it's safe to say the Kansans view Texas more as their biggest obstacle and not as their biggest rival. Regardless of how you view it tonight's game is certainly a huge one in terms of a potential sixth consecutive conference title. Losing certainly doesn't do tremendous damage to the Jayhawks chances, but winning would have to get pretty close to securing it.
- Kansas and Texas rank 1-2 in Big 12 wins since the league started in 1996-97. Kansas is 180-36 (83.3 percent), while Texas is 150-66 (69.4 percent).
- Kansas has won or tied for a league-best nine Big 12 regular season championships, including each of the last five. Texas is next with three.
- Kansas and Texas have played in the Big 12 Championship title game three of the last four years, with all three going to KU.
- Since the start of the Big 12, Kansas (2002, 2003, 2008), Texas (2003), Oklahoma (2002) and Oklahoma State (2004) have advanced to the Final Four.
- Each of the last five KU-UT match-ups have been decided by 10 points or less with three of those by four points or less.
|Rank and Records||KU||TEX|
|Strength of Schedule||#21||#71|
|RPI Top 50||7-1||5-3|
Kansas won its eighth-straight game with a 75-64 victory against Nebraska Saturday. The win extended the nation's longest home court winning streak to 55 games, which ties for the second most in KU history. KU averages 83.7 points per game and gives up 62.7 ppg for a Big 12-leading +21 scoring margin. In Big 12 play, Kansas is scoring 81.2 points per game and holds a +13.1 scoring margin.
Senior guard Sherron Collins leads the team in scoring at 15.6 points per game and has scored in double figures 17 times this season. Collins is tied for the Big 12 lead in free throw percentage at 84.1percent and he leads KU in assists with 98 and three-pointers with 46.
Sophomore forward Marcus Morris has stepped up his game in Big 12 play. Morris leads KU in scoring in league games at 17.8 points per game following his 20 points and 11 rebounds against Nebraska Saturday. Morris is pulling down 8.5 rebounds in conference play. In all games, Morris averages 13 points and 6.3 rebounds.
Texas is 19-4 overall and 5-3 in Big 12 play after its 80-71 loss at Oklahoma Saturday. The Longhorns are 12-1 at home this season. Texas leads the Big 12 in scoring offense at 84.1 points per game and is second behind Kansas in scoring margin at +16.3. The Longhorns also lead the league in rebounding at 43.8 boards per game and they have a +7.3 rebound margin. Texas has eight players who average 17 or more minutes per game.
Senior guard/forward Damion James leads UT in scoring at 17.8 points per game and leads the conference in rebounding with 11 boards per contest. He has a team-best 39 steals and is second on the squad with 25 blocked shots.
Freshman guard Avery Bradley is next in scoring at 12.8 ppg and he is also second on the team with 52 assists and 32 threepointers. Bradley is third on the squad with 33 steals.
Senior center Dexter Pittman leads UT with 48 blocked shots to complement his 11.4 scoring average. His 6.2 rebounds per game are second behind James.
Freshman guard J'Covan Brown comes off the bench to score 9.4 points per game. He has 51 assists and 25 three-pointers. Freshman guard/forward Jordan Hamilton scores 9.3 points per contest and he leads UT with 36 three-pointers. Junior forward Gary Johnson is third on the team with 5.0 rebounds per outing and he averages 8.3 points. Junior guard Dogus Balbay is a starter who averages 4.3 points per game and leads UT with 101 assists. He is second on the team with 33 steals.
Junior guard Jai Lucas comes off the bench to score 3.9 points per game, while senior guard Justin Mason is a starter who scores 3.8 points per contest. Sophomore forward/center Alexis Wangmene, brother of KU junior Chase Buford, averages 8.9 minutes and 2.5 points for the Longhorns.
Meet the Opposing Coach
Texas coach Rick Barnes is the winningest coach in Texas basketball history with a 289-109 in his 12th season at UT. Overall, Barnes is 491-243 in his 23rd season which includes head coaching stops at George Mason, Providence and Clemson prior to Texas. Barnes has guided his teams to 17 NCAA Tournaments, including 14 straight, and three NIT trips. Under Barnes, UT owns a 27-9 (.750) mark against AP Top 25 opponents at the Erwin Center.
Year-in and year-out the Kansas-Texas battles are some of the biggest in the Big 12 and nationally. Kansas leads the overall series 16-6 and has won two straight and five of the last six meetings. These teams have met in three of the last four Phillips Big 12 Championship title games with KU claiming all three match ups - 80-68 in Dallas in 2006, 88-84 in overtime in Oklahoma City in 2007 and 84-74 in Kansas City in 2008. Texas is 5-3 against Kansas in games played in Austin, including a 4-2 record in the Erwin Center. UT has won each of the last three meetings in Austin. Since the inception of the Big 12, Kansas holds a 12-5 record against Texas with a 9-4 mark in regular-season play and 3-1 record in the Big 12 Championship. Expect a contest, as each of the last five have been decided by 10 points or less. This series dates back to 1938.