Texas St.-Texas Preview

Texas’ highest-scoring game in nearly four years wasn’t good

enough for coach Rick Barnes. He certainly wouldn’t tolerate

another subpar performance against Texas State.

Following a dominant game offensively, the second-ranked

Longhorns look to avenge one of their worst shooting games from

last season as they host the Bobcats on Saturday afternoon.

After shooting below 42 percent in two straight games, Texas

(7-0) made 59.0 percent of its shots in a 107-74 win over Long

Beach State on Monday night. The Longhorns scored their most points

since a 110-38 victory over Prairie View A&M on Dec. 30,


Still, Barnes has even higher standards for his team.

“We’ve come a long way in five weeks,” he said. “(But) we’re a

long way from being the team I envision. I want to be the team that

can be relentless every possession on defense and offense. I want

people to say ‘They are nasty and they are going to keep


Texas shot 35.9 percent against Texas State last Dec. 13 but

still won 81-73 for its 20th straight victory in the series. The

Bobcats (3-6) haven’t beaten the Longhorns since a 33-31 win in

Austin on Dec. 7, 1937.

The Longhorns lead the series 38-5.

Forward Damion James had 17 points and nine rebounds in last

year’s contest with Texas State. He’s the Longhorns’ leader with

15.7 points and 9.4 rebounds per game.

James had 14 points versus Long Beach State despite being

limited by foul problems, while Texas’ heralded group of freshmen

had their most productive game. Avery Bradley scored 17 and Jordan

Hamilton and J’Covan Brown each had 13.

“We get better every single day,” Bradley said.

Bradley, ranked by some as the top recruit in the nation, shot 7

for 13 from the field and 2 for 4 from 3-point range. The guard is

averaging 9.4 points.

“Coach said sometimes I need to look to score,” Bradley said.

“If I miss a shot, I’m looking to make the next one.”

Bradley is one of three starting guards for Texas. That group

includes junior Dogus Balbay, who had a career-high 11 assists in

his second straight start after being used off the bench for the

first five games.

“If they keep finishing, I’m going to keep (passing),” said

Balbay, who leads the Longhorns with 5.1 assists a contest.

Texas State has been tinkering with its lineup all season, using

different combinations of starters in each of its games. The

Bobcats have six players averaging at least 8.0 points.

Cameron Johnson leads Texas State with 12.3 points and 7.9

rebounds per game. The junior forward, though, was held to three

points on 1-of-5 shooting in a 94-86 loss to SMU on Monday


Uriel Segura, Tony Bishop and J.B. Conley each had 18 points for

Texas State. Conley went 2 for 4 from beyond the arc and is making

52.0 percent of his shots from long range.