Bill Self's Jayhawks have 15 wins on their resume, but none more impressive than Monday's 92-74 dismantling of third-ranked Baylor. The victory was the eighth straight for Kansas, and improved the team to 5-0 in conference play.
Rick Barnes' Longhorns are undefeated at home this season, but wins have been harder to come by on the road, including back-to-back losses in the last seven days at Missouri (84-73) and Kansas State (84-80) to fall to 2-3 in- conference.
This game marks the 26th meeting between these two teams. Kansas holds an 18-7 advantage all-time. Kansas and Texas split a pair of games a year ago. Texas won a 74-63 decision in Lawrence, while Kansas got revenge in the Big 12 Championship Game, 85-73.
The Jayhawks played their best against the Bears on Monday, dominating in just about every facet of the game. Kansas shot a sizzling 57.4 percent from the floor and outrebounded Baylor 39-24. Thomas Robinson and Tyshawn Taylor led the charge, combining for 55 points in the win. Taylor was 10-of-14 from the floor and led all scorers with 28 points. Robinson recorded his typical double-double, finishing with 27 points and 14 rebounds. Travis Releford and Elijah Johnson tacked on 11 points apiece, while Jeff Withey also recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 boards. Robinson has really stepped up this season and is playing at an All-American level. He is the only player in the Big 12 averaging a double-double with 17.8 points and 12.3 rebounds per game. Taylor is also a prolific scorer, pouring in 16.2 ppg. Releford (10.1 ppg) and Johnson (9.4 ppg) provide scoring depth. It isn't just the obvious offensive weapons that has Kansas atop the conference standings, but also stellar defensive play. Opponents are averaging just 60.1 ppg this season, on well under 40 percent shooting (.372).
Texas has put up strong numbers at both ends of the court as well, averaging 75.8 ppg, while allowing just 65.2. The Longhorns may not have similar depth to Kansas offensively, but there is star power in the form of guard J'Covan Brown, who leads the Big 12 at 19.2 ppg. Brown has eclipsed the 30-point mark twice this season and has been over 20 on nine occasions. Sheldon McClellan and Myck Kabongo are complementary players supporting Brown, with 11.8 and 10.0 ppg, respectively. The Longhorns put up 80 points in Manhattan this week, but it wasn't enough in a four-point loss to the Wildcats. Brown was just 8- of-28 shooting in the game, but still led the team with 22 points. McClellan poured in 19 points, while Kabongo recorded his second straight double-double with 14 points and 10 boards.