Texas bounced back after consecutive losses dropped it from the top of the rankings. Now, the Longhorns will try to get a measure of revenge for a surprising defeat from last season.
Sixth-ranked Texas will try to remain undefeated at home Saturday when it takes on 24th-ranked Baylor, which snapped a 24-game losing streak between the teams when they last met.
The Longhorns (18-12, 4-1 Big 12) improved to 12-0 in Austin with a 95-83 win over Texas Tech on Wednesday, avoiding a third straight loss after suffering consecutive road defeats. They remained second in the Big 12 - one game behind No. 2 Kansas, which they host Feb. 8.
Texas won by getting its offense back on track. The Longhorns, who had shot 38.6 percent in their previous three games, shot 55.2 percent against the Red Raiders, who they outrebounded 46-27.
Senior forward Damion James scored a season-high 28 points and added 13 rebounds, setting the Big 12 record for career double-doubles with 48.
“It really doesn’t mean that much to me,” James said. “I’m just happy because it means we are back on the winning side of things.”
James, who should set the school mark for games started Saturday, is averaging 14.0 points and 9.8 rebounds in his last five games against Baylor. He has two career double-doubles against the Bears and fell shy of one in the most recent meeting, scoring 11 points and finishing with eight rebounds in Baylor’s 76-70 win over Texas in last season’s Big 12 tournament.
The Longhorns had won the previous 24 meetings against the Bears (15-4, 2-3). They’ll try to do a better job defending LaceDarius Dunn, who hit a key 3-pointer in the Baylor victory and finished with 16 points and seven rebounds.
Dunn has carried that success over to this season, averaging a team-high 18.7 points and making 64 3-pointers. However, the junior guard was held to fewer than 10 points for the first time in 10 games and missed a shot at the buzzer Tuesday in a 76-74 loss to No. 11 Kansas State.
Dunn, who had been averaging 26 points in Big 12 play, was held to nine while shooting 3 of 13 overall and 0 for 4 from 3-point range.
“There were so plays that normally he makes,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said. “I was proud of his effort tonight. He wasn’t 100 percent. He is battling through an injury, but he competed and played hard. That is what you want from a player.”
Baylor, which fell to 0-2 against ranked opponents, has alternated wins and losses in its last six games overall but has dropped its last two road contests.
The Bears have lost 11 straight in Austin since an 87-81 victory Jan. 3, 1998.
Texas, meanwhile, is 11-0 at home against ranked opponents since the start of the 2005-06 season, including a 79-68 win over then-No. 9 Michigan State on Dec. 22.