TCU (11-20) vs. Texas (15-16)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Wednesday, March 13, 9:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Sprint Center (19,000) -- Kansas City, Missouri. Television: Big 12 Network. Home Record: TCU 9-9, Texas 12-4. Away Record: TCU 1-10, Texas 2-8. Neutral Record: TCU 1-1, Texas 1-4. Conference Record: TCU 2-16, Texas 7-11. Series Record: Texas leads, 101-62.
GAME NOTES: The 10th-seeded TCU Horned Frogs and the seventh-seeded Texas Longhorns are set to do battle in the first round of the 2013 Big 12 Conference Tournament on Wednesday night at the Sprint Center in Kansas City.
Awaiting the winner of this matchup in Thursday's quarterfinal round is second-seeded Kansas State.
TCU finished up the Big 12 slate alone in last place at 2-16, although it did manage to win its latest game at home versus Oklahoma, 70-67, to snap an eight-game losing streak and move to 11-20 overall. Despite their sub par record, the Horned Frogs have shown flashes of turning the corner at times, specifically in a Feb. 6 upset of first-place Kansas (62-55).
Texas experienced a down season by its standards, going just 7-11 in the Big 12 while sitting with a sub-.500 overall record as well (15-16). The Longhorns are carrying some momentum into this tournament however, having won back-to- back games to close out the regular season, including a 71-69 overtime triumph at Texas Tech in last Saturday's finale.
Texas has beaten TCU on six straight occasions to improve its standing in the all-time series to 101-62.
The Horned Frogs came out firing on senior day, shooting greater than 61 percent from the floor in the first half to carry a 44-22 lead into intermission, and while Oklahoma battled all the way back to make it a one- possession game late, it could never fully overcome the deficit. Pacing four teammates in double-figures was Garlon Green, who shot 4-of-4 from 3-point range en route to 18 points. Connell and Crossland and Charles Hill, Jr. netted 13 points apiece, while Kyan Anderson tallied 11 points and seven assists. The offensive outburst was far from the norm for TCU, which usually ranks last in the Big 12 in scoring with just 55.0 ppg, which spoils a strong defensive attack (62.3 ppg). Anderson leads the way with 12.1 ppg, Green is on his heels with 9.9 ppg, and Adrick McKinney, Devonta Abron and Crossland are all solid in the trenches, grabbing between 5.5 and 6.4 rpg each.
The Longhorns were down eight to Texas Tech with under five minutes to play the last time out, but they climbed back to tie the game before the end of regulation, and with the seconds running down in overtime, Julien Lewis drilled the game-winning jumper to lift his team to the thrilling victory. Sheldon McClellan was strong off the bench, pouring in 27 points on 8-of-18 from the field and 9-of-10 from the foul line, while Lewis (15 points) was also solid in reserve minutes. Myck Kabongo was dreadful in the win, shooting 0-of-12 from the field, but he has averaged 15.8 ppg in the eight games since his return from suspension, and UT's record has improved with him on the floor (5-3). McClellan (14.1 ppg) and Lewis (10.4 ppg) are both consistent sources of points, but neither shoots greater than 40 percent from the field. Texas nets just 65.7 ppg, but it has topped that average in six of the eight games Kabongo has played.
Texas is clearly a much better team with Kabongo on the floor, even when he is not playing his best, and while the 'Horns still aren't on the level of the Big 12's elite, they have enough talent to blow past last-place TCU.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Texas 66, TCU 57
03/13 11:12:19 ET