ESPN’s College Game Day is coming to Allen Fieldhouse for the Kansas versus Texas game on Saturday, February 16, at 8 P.M. Central Time. KU is coming off of a convincing win at home over Kansas State to snap a 3 game losing streak. At the time, Kansas State was ranked higher than KU in the national polls, proving that Kansas isn’t roadkill after a 3 game skid.
But, the Jayhawks lost to surging Oklahoma State at home, Big 12 basement dweller TCU on the road and a better than average Oklahoma team on the road. There’s no rule stating Kansas cannot lose at home in the 2012-2013 season and to a team with a losing record.
Texas comes in off a down year in which they have only 3 Big 12 wins and an 11-13 record overall. Texas had been a national powerhouse program in the past decade with Kansas, but times have changed. Texas will be scrapping to get a win and right the ship with barely enough time to scrape enough wins together to at least be on the bubble for the NCAA tournament.
A win against Kansas at Allen Fieldhouse would look good on their resume. Texas also brings in a little confidence after taking a tough Iowa State team to two overtimes and a winning in Austin. Kansas took an overtime to beat Iowa State in Allen Fieldhouse. Texas is far from a pushover and an easy win.
If Kansas can bring their A game like they did with Kansas State, they shouldn’t have much of an issue getting by Texas. Jeff Withey needs to continue to dominate in the paint. Travis Releford needs to continue to play tough defense and contribute at least double digits in scoring. Ben McLemore needs to get going early and often on offense. Naadir Thaarpe needs to continue his impressive performance dishing the ball and playing tough on defense.
If all of those keys come together, then this is a tough Kansas team to beat. If one factor is off, then the jayhawks have shown glimpses of vulnerability that have been masked by great team play before the 3 game losing streak.
Look for Kansas to come out fired up and keep the pressure on Kansas State and Oklahoma State to keep winning if they want to share the Big 12 title.
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