Kansas Clinches Share of Big 12 Men’s Regular-Season Title
The Kansas Jayhawks clinched a share of the Big 12 men’s basketball regular-season championship with a 67-63 win over Texas Tech on Tuesday at Allen Fieldhouse.
Kansas (25-5, 13-4 in Big 12) has one game remaining on Saturday against Texas, which is one loss behind the Jayhawks in the Big 12 standings. If Kansas beats Texas on Saturday, or if Texas loses to TCU on Wednesday, the Jayhawks will be the champions by themselves.
Kansas has won seven in a row and nine of their last 10. The Jayhawks have now won or shared 17 of the last 19 Big 12 regular-season titles.
It was the seventh time in the last nine meetings between the teams that the game was decided by six or fewer points.
Texas Tech (16-14, 5-12) cut the Kansas lead to one point, 61-60, with less than a minute after Tech’s De’Vion Harmon made a free throw. On the other end, Kansas forward Jalen Wilson missed a lay-up and the ball went to the ground.
Both Kansas and Texas Tech players were in a scrum, and when the ball rolled out to Kansas forward Kevin McCullar Jr., who laid it in for his 1,000th career point and to give Kansas a three-point lead with 33 seconds left.
McCullar played his first four seasons at Texas Tech and had 14 points and nine rebounds on senior night against his former team.
On the other end, Texas Tech took a time out to try and draw up a play. Freshman guard Richard ‘Pop’ Isaacs took a drive to the basket, but his shot attempt hit the bottom of the backboard. Kansas rebounded it and got the ball to DaJuan Harris on the other end for a lay-up and a five-point lead.
Harmon — who led Texas Tech with 15 points — hid a long 3-pointer with a few seconds left to cut the lead to two points. But Tech fouled Kansas guard Gradey Dick, who made both free throws and put the game away. The freshman had just four points.
Wilson had a game-high 21 points in his final game at Allen Fieldhouse. He was one of two seniors honored on senior night. McCullar was the other. Harris had 16 points.
Fardaws Aimaq had 13 points and 18 rebounds for Texas Tech, while Kevin Obanor had 14 points and Isaacs had 11. Jaylon Tyson only scored six points, but he had 13 rebounds.
Texas Tech was trying to play its way closer to the ESPN Bracketology Field of 68. Entering the game, the Red Raiders were among the Next Four Out in the field.
You can find Matthew Postins on Twitter @PostinsPostcard