A victory over Purdue was nice, but UT needs more from Roach

Coach Shaka Smart has stocked the Texas Longhorns with enough talent that senior guard Kerwin Roach II doesn’t necessarily need to lead the team every night.

But for the Longhorns to reach their potential this season, Roach will need to play better than he has been playing lately.

Which is to say, not all that great.

Roach is at the center of one of the early mysteries to the new season.

In the state of Texas, few players have the athleticism that Roach can bring to the floor every night.

His skills were on full display on Nov. 22 when he scored 32 points to help the Longhorns defeat the seventh-ranked North Carolina Tar Heels.

In addition to his 12 of 15 shooting against the Heels, he also produced seven assists, six rebounds and four steals.

Since then, his offensive efficiency has declined dramatically.

Over the past four games, including Texas’ 72-68 home victory over Purdue on Sunday night, Roach has hit only 21 percent of his shots from the field.

Yes, Matt Coleman, Dylan Osetkowski and freshman phenom Jaxson Hayes can, and should, be leading on a nightly basis.

The Longhorns can win their share of games in the upcoming Big 12 race with those three playing well.

But, no matter how you slice it, 9 of 43 from the field from Roach over a four-game stretch is not going to inspire much confidence leading into conference.

Shooting 80 percent shouldn’t be expected every night. But, some consistency would be a welcome sight for the fans.

Texas battles to beat TCU 99-98 in double overtime

Playing on emotion for a cancer-stricken teammate, the Texas Longhorns claimed a 99-98 victory in double overtime Wednesday night against 16th-ranked TCU.

“We all had one mind-set — win this for Andrew Jones,” Texas guard Matt Coleman told the UT radio broadcast in Austin. “Unfortunate news what he has. It’s sad. I know he wants to be out here with us.

“So, we just had one mind-set, win this for Andrew.”

Jones, a sophomore from Irving MacArthur, is hospitalized with leukemia.

The diagnosis was released by the family through the UT athletic department earlier in the day.

Texas coach Shaka Smart said it’s been a difficult few days for the Longhorns.

“After we talked to the team yesterday about Andrew, they were really, really upset,” Smart said. “(I was) just trying to help the guys understand what we could do over the next 24 hours.

“I said, ‘Well, no one should have a bigger ‘why’ than you guys when you take the floor.’ ”

Trailing by two points with less than a minute remaining in the second OT, the Longhorns retaliated when Coleman drove for a layup to tie it, 98-98.

On the other end, TCU’s Desmond Bane missed a jumper with 13 seconds left.

After the Longhorns rebounded for possession, TCU forward Kenrich Williams fouled Jericho Sims.

Sims stepped to the line and hit the first of two free throws for the game’s final point.

TCU’s Jaylen Fisher missed a driving layup with a second left.

Guard Eric Davis scored 22 points off the bench to lead the Longhorns.

Both forward Dylan Osetkowski (20 points, 6 rebounds) and Coleman (17 points, 12 assists) played 49 minutes.

For TCU, forward Kenrich Williams hit 7 three-pointers en route to a game-high 26 points.

Horned Frogs forward Vladimir Brodziansky added 19 points, including a bucket at the end of regulation and at the end of the first overtime to extend the game.