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Longhorns' freefall continues

KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 11:  Damion James #5 of the Texas Longhorns looks on from the bench late in the second half against the Baylor Bears during the quarterfinals of the 2010 Phillips 66 Big 12 Men's Basketball Tournament at the Sprint Center on March 11, 2010 in Kansas City, Missouri. The Bears defeated the Longhorns 86-67. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images
Ryne E. HancockCorrespondent IMarch 12, 2010

I’m sure the lone Longhorns fan I know in Memphis won’t like what I’m about to write, nor anyone else who follows Texas basketball these days.

When Kansas lost to Tennessee, therefore giving Texas the No. 1 ranking for the first time in school history, I thought that they were a better team than Kansas at the time.

I really did.

But what I, along with everyone else in the sports blogging world didn’t expect, was a historic freefall of this size.

Starting with the Longhorns’ victory over Texas A&M on January 16th, the record of Texas since then is 7-9.

Of their seven wins in that time span, the only win worth writing home to Mom about would be the victory on the road at Oklahoma State, which did something that the Longhorns could not do on their home floor.

Beat Kansas.

Then a Baylor team that features guys like Nolan Dennis, who almost came to Memphis to play for Coach Calipari, sweeps Texas in the regular season and on last night in Kansas City delivered the third blow to the Longhorns’ epic freefall by winning 86-67 in the Big 12 Tournament to drop the Longhorns to 24-9 on the season.

What was once a No. 1 seed in January is now, according to Joe Lunardi a No. 7 seed playing against a dangerous St. Mary’s team that beat Gonzaga in the West Coast Conference championship and could boot the Longhorns out of the first weekend in the NCAA Tournament.

You can say that injuries were what got them there to this point.

Hell, there are a variety of things you can point to for blame.

But you want to know what I think?

I think the issue is that this team felt that they were entitled to something because they were ranked in the top five in preseason.

And when the losses started to mount in Austin, too many players talked smack and did not perform to the best of their abilities on a consistent basis.

Thursday’s game in Kansas City showed who wanted it more and even worse for Longhorn fans, which could be an omen to a short trip to the NCAA Tournament.

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