Texas basketball struggles for relevancy


Elisabeth Dillon

Sophomore guard Julien Lewis and his team have struggled to perform this season and rank at the bottom of the Big 12.

Wes Maulsby

If you haven’t noticed that basketball season has started, don’t worry. There haven’t been many good reasons to watch.

Fans of the San Antonio Spurs have a title contender to cheer for and Houston Rockets followers have a team in the playoff hunt that’s hosting this year’s All-Star Game. 

But there are many Austinites who can’t fully appreciate basketball this season because the Longhorns have failed to produce much spark on the court.

Texas basketball is in a bit of a rough spot right now. Combined, the men’s and women’s teams are 0-11 in conference play this season. Not very good. The men’s team is 8-10 on the season while the women are 7-10. At this rate, it seems that the fastest way for either team to get a win would be to play each other. They couldn’t both lose that game, right?

The numbers don’t get better.

Texas hasn’t won a true road game this season. It is 0-7 on other teams’ home courts. It only has three neutral site wins to cobble together a 3-14 record away from Austin. At this rate, the best basketball the Frank Erwin Center will see will come in March as it hosts NCAA tournament games.

In the frantic search for answers, one stat stands out more than any other: turnovers. The men’s team averages 16 per game while the women average a whopping 21 per game. That’s not a winning formula. The men are 315th in the country in turnovers this season while the women are 312th.

Both are last in the Big 12 in turnover margin with the men’s side marking the only team with a negative margin.

Despite all this, there are some good things happening. The men’s team still plays stingy defense and is a solid rebounding team. The women are the top offensive rebounding team in the conference while also being second to Baylor in blocked shots.

They’ve had some close losses, both losing at least one conference game in overtime. But there are not many positives that can be taken away from what these teams have produced. The men’s team cannot find a way to close out a game, constantly giving up late leads while the women have struggled to top the 60-point plateau, lately.

Perhaps if they could hold on to the ball, the Longhorns could score a few more points. There is one silver lining left when discussing the disgusting state of basketball at the University: both the men and the women still get to play TCU twice.

Published on January 23, 2013 as "UT basketball squads nearing all-time lows".