Give Dylan Disu his flowers and entrust the job to Rodney Terry.
The Texas Longhorns’ sensational season continues, with Rodney Terry’s club overcoming a late push from Penn State with one of their own to win 71-66 and advance to the Sweet 16.
Here are some quick thoughts on Texas’ late win over Penn State.
First of all… I don’t know how you’re not giving Rodney Terry the job at this point. I mean, he absolutely deserved it. Terry not only kept Texas together after Beard, he kept them thriving and living up to their preseason expectations as one of the best in the nation. A No. 5 ranking in the final AP Top 25 poll, a Big 12 Tournament title, and now, a 21-7 mark under Terry after guiding Texas to its first Sweet 16 appearance since 2008. And even in- Beyond that, every chance the players get, they vouch for him as a guy from Texas, and the results definitely back that up. It’s simple – Texas needs to remove the interim tag and name Rodney Terry its next head coach.
Give Dylan Disu his flowers. In a game of this magnitude, he tied his career high with a monster 28 points for the Longhorns, breaking Kevin Durant’s tournament record for most field goals in a tournament game with 14. He was the Texas offense when they just couldn’t get much going against Penn State’s athletic guards early on, and most notably, he was the late Texas offense scoring 10 more clutch points after that Texas fell behind 58-55 in stride. And that’s just the latest, most significant example of a recent run for Disu, who also earned Big 12 Tournament Most Outstanding Player honors and is currently playing some of the best basketball in the country.
Timmy Allen played a key role in this win, especially defensively. Nine points, 12 rebounds and three assists with a block is a pretty solid stat line, but his defensive impact has been much greater. He was the main discipline and length defender of All-American Jalen Pickett and Allen. There was a huge factor in limiting the Penn State star to just 5-14 for 11 points and forcing him to seven turnovers. Just as Texas doesn’t win this without Disu carrying the charge offensively, they don’t win without Allen thriving primarily on this mission.
At the end of the day, it was a firm and resilient victory for the Longhorns. Texas got the upper hand early, controlled most of the game and did just enough to keep the Nittany Lions at bay, despite playing far from their best basketball collectively. And when a 10-0 run from Penn State suddenly tipped things in Texas’ favor and it looked like they were overwhelmed, this group of veterans just responded with a 14-4 run to effectively seal their sweet deal. 16, despite a few last-second mistakes that gave Penn State its last breath. But either way, they’ve been resilient all year and struggling with the game in play was an early storyline when Terry took over. And then, in a game that could have won him the job, they battled it out in the final minutes and went past the first weekend for the first time in a decade and a half.
Texas defeating a truly quality Penn State team despite only a 3 is a remarkable feat. And to be sure, the length and athleticism of the Nittany Lions has a lot to do with it – Texas missed a few they should have done, but Penn State just made it really hard for Texas guards to make it. a lot. This game plan worked. Texas started 0-12 from deep and a timely shot by Sir’Jabari Rice was Texas’ only mark. If you told me Texas would shoot that way from the perimeter while Penn State drilled eight and Camren Wynter worked the midrange for 16, I would almost guarantee Texas would lose. But thanks in large part to a stifling first-half defense and, of course, Dylan Disu, they survived and moved on.
This story will be updated.
Represent the horns during March Madness with the help of Breaking T.