Ds Scholarship

With Gary Patterson and energized crowd, Texas can’t stop Kansas State

Carr on Texans fans: ‘Definitely frustrated we didn’t introduce them’

One of the biggest reasons Shaka Smart didn’t find sustained success in Texas is that his team rarely met the moment.

Chris Bird’s first team has a hard time with that, too.

The crowd was 11,498 inside the Irwin Center on Tuesday Just electrical. One young fan made a worm on the sidelines, while another drew fans with his American Bandstand whenever it appeared on the video board.

Fueled by free Whataburger gifts, the students packed the end zones on the first day of spring classes.

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The newest Texans fan, Gary Patterson, has surely been called from the ward of athletic director Chris Del Conte. Wearing a white pullover with the UT logo, Patterson should be announced as Special Assistant to Soccer Coach Steve Sarkissian any day now, assuming he survives the Texas HR Challenge.

“I have to wear something!” Long ago, but now a precedent, the TCU coach told the American statesman from the ward. “Nothing official.”

All weather was in place for the 23rd Texas State to score a thrilling home win and keep fans coming back for more. Instead, the 66-65 loss to Kansas State looks like a higher cut followed by a right cross.

Texas’ Marcus Carr scored 25 points, the highest level in the game, but missed the lead jumpers two seconds from the end of the game. It was a good look, a great jump shot from mid-range, which Carr made easy at times in the second half. This, however, did not enter.

more: Slowed by COVID-19 protocols, Kansas has been eager to move again against Texas

“I felt like I had a good look,” said Carr, who took the reins late Saturday in Iowa and did it again this time. “I’m proud of myself for delivering in those moments, and I didn’t do that today, so it definitely falls on my shoulder.”

Timmy Allen was the only other UT player with 15 points. Christian Bishop has eight rebounds, including some big balls under the extension. As a team, the Texans fired 42.6% but went 4 for 17 out of a 3-point range.

The Longhorns (13-5, 3-3 Big 12) missed a huge opportunity to secure a home win against the struggling but dangerous Wildcats (10-7, 2-4).

Saturday: Asymmetric Texas hands out at home in a winable Big 12 match in Iowa with 20 turnovers

“I thought K-State came here tonight and turned the game into a street fight and were willing, able, capable, and more than motivated to take part in street fighting,” Bird said. “We had some guys on our squad tonight and it looks like they got punched in the face a few times.

“We have to be more aggressive,” Bird continued. “There must be an urgent need for everyone who plays with us. In this league now, you cannot go in and prepare. When you enter the game, you have to be ready to go.”

That’s how it goes in the Big 12. No one team is good enough to escape the title. Everyone is good enough to beat everyone else, if given the chance.

The Kansas State players may have felt extra motivated given that they lost to Texas in Manhattan on January 4. That night, the Wildcats only had seven players for scholarships available due to COVID-19 protocols. Coach Bruce Webber and his top assistant had to stay home, too.

January 4th: #14 Texans spend half-jump shooting, then get serious with Kansas being outnumbered by men

Weber will not miss this one. He was so involved that officials whistled to warn him that he was outside the coaches box. To be fair, Weber was pretty excited when the Nijel Pack dried 3 pointers off the top of the key to give K-State a 45-44 lead with 13:01 remaining.

The Wildcats spent most of the night hacking horns. The team that had not been able to connect to a few matches a few matches ago, was suddenly hit from all sides. Texas ended up being 21 to 26 on the free throw line. Carr was 11 vs 12.

“We kept grinding and we fought through it,” Webber said. “We fought through a bad problem. We fought through a bunch of things.”

He also wore the second half, Kar Simply took over. He buried a triple pointer from the right wing, then drilled a turning jump into the fairway. He made two free throws, then two more. Another rotation jump near the elbow. Another bucket at close range. Then a 3-poitner drill that gave the Texas 62-58 a bullet.

Fans were swinging and rolling on one possession when Andrew Jones missed, Carr missed and Bishop Allen fouled the ball. Unfortunately for the home team, Bucket Allen with 3:32 remaining will be the final Texas points. Horns went 0 for 4 paying off the rest of the way.

K-State guard Markquis Nowell hacked in and made a wild pass that made you wonder what he was doing. Sure enough, here the Pack came out of nowhere to collect the ball for an easy bucket, giving the Wildcats a one-point lead.

Courtney Ramy tried to get up through a double team, but missed a hard jump. Carr then missed the final match of the game. That’s a lot for the rollicking yard. The place empties unbelievably fast.

“We always love to play at home and the atmosphere tonight was special,” said Carr. “Definitely frustrating because we didn’t introduce them.”

Bird knows that winning sells itself. No amount of free food or freebies can keep fans coming back when the team is struggling. Texas hosts Oklahoma on Saturday, and Utah officials wanted fans to enjoy Tuesday night and back this weekend.

Only six games in the 18-game league table, and Texas still has a lot of fights to come.

“Very appreciated by the crowd. “They affected the game,” Baird said. “Hopefully we can have a better audience in the next match and help our team respond.”

Contact Brian Davis by phone or text at 512-445-3957. Send an email to bdavis@statesman.com or Tweet embed.


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