The Kansas Jayhawks ended the regular season with their first loss in a month, falling to the Texas Longhorns 75-59 in Austin.
That’s KU’s first loss to a top-10 ranked team this season, although it won’t have any bearing on its seeding for the Big 12 Tournament next week in Kansas City, Missouri. The Jayhawks wrapped up the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament outright earlier this week.
Kansas struggled offensively throughout the game, shooting just 36.2% from the floor and 31.8% from three-point range. Junior forward Jalen Wilson was the Jayhawks’ only player who reached double figures, scoring a game-high 23 points. He also collected 10 rebounds for his 10th double-double of the season.
“We’ve got a pretty decent team but we’re pretty good only when we really play together and play as a unit,” Kansas coach Bill Self said, “and today we played more as individuals because Texas did some good things to take us out of stuff.”
Texas played stifling defense throughout Saturday’s game, completely changing its approach from the first meeting between the Jayhawks and Longhorns earlier this season. In that game, KU thrived in the paint and scored 88 points despite hitting just two three pointers. The second time around, the Longhorns smothered nearly everything the Jayhawks tried to run inside.
“We couldn’t even get into offense to get a backdoor cut and things like that for a while,” Self said. “So a lot of things we can work on and hopefully improve on.”
Texas senior guard Sir’Jabari Rice led the Longhorns with 23 points in the winning effort.
While the loss didn’t change anything for Kansas regarding the Big 12 Tournament, it did clinch the No. 2 seed for Texas. This game also impacted the Kansas State Wildcats, who lost to the West Virginia Mountaineers on Saturday 89-81 and are now the No. 3 seed next week.
Both Kansas and Texas will open tournament play Thursday night at the T-Mobile Center, taking on the winning teams from Wednesday’s opening-round games.
For more reaction to the Kansas Jayhawks’ 75-59 loss to the Texas Longhorns, check out Mic’d Up with Jake and Fulton from noon-3:00 p.m., and 580 Sports Talk with Brendan and Dan from 3-6:00 p.m. Monday on 580 WIBW.