Texas Basketball: 2 studs, 1 dud from second half dominance vs. UAPB

Christian Bishop, Texas basketball Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports
Christian Bishop, Texas basketball Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports /

What was once a close game in the first half between No. 2 ranked Texas basketball and the Arkansas-Pine Bluff Golden Lions turned into an absolute blowout in the second half at the brand new Moody Center in Austin on Dec. 10. Head coach Chris Beard and his squad were a bit shaky at times to start this game.

But the Longhorns definitely showed up in the second half. After taking a still comfortable 46-30 lead into the locker room at halftime, Texas really came alive in the final 20 minutes.

Texas beat Arkansas-Pine Bluff by a score of 42-13 in the second half to get the win by the final score of 88-43. This was a convincing win through and through for the Longhorns as this team rebounded from the first loss of the season, which came at the hands of the No. 17 Illinois Fighting Illini in the Jimmy V. Classic at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 6.

Beard and the Longhorns were able to cover the massive 37-point spread heading into this game without too much trouble. Here’s a look at two studs and one dud for the Longhorns following this dominant 88-43 win over the Golden Lions on Dec. 10.

Studs and duds from Texas basketball’s 45-point win over UAPB

Stud No. 1: Christian Bishop, F

The MVP of this game for the Longhorns was definitely senior forward Christian Bishop. The former Creighton transfer had the most productive game of the season so far in this win over the Golden Lions. He registered a game-high 16 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field, 0-of-2 from beyond the arc, and a perfect 2-of-2 from the charity stripe.

Bishop was able to make an impact on multiple areas of this game. He reeled in a game and season-high nine rebounds to go along with a season-high four assists.

It’s also worth noting that this was the first time that Bishop scored in double figures this season. This was a season-best game for Bishop in terms of scoring, assists, and rebounds. Bishop was a go-to weapon for Beard and the Longhorns in this one, and it showed as he posted a season-high usage rate above 32 percent.

Dud No. 1: Tyrese Hunter, G

It was a bit disappointing to see a second straight down game by the usual standards of the reigning Big 12 Newcomer of the Year and standout sophomore guard Tyrese Hunter. The former Iowa State transfer struggled to find his offensive game, as he did down the stretch in the loss to Illinois a few days ago.

Hunter tied a team-high with two turnovers in this game to go along with just seven points, one rebound, three assists, and two steals. He shot 3-of-7 from the field and 1-of-2 from beyond the arc.

Texas was finding more success against Arkansas-Pine Bluff by dumping the ball down low instead of initiating the offense with its starting guards Hunter and senior Marcus Carr. And while Carr and Hunter did play pretty well on the defensive end of the floor, they still combined for just 16 points on 13 field goal attempts.

Stud No. 2: Brock Cunningham, F

One Longhorns player that appeared on the studs lists more frequently in the last few wins is senior forward Brock Cunningham. The gritty 6-foot-6 fourth-year forward is off to a career-best start through the first eight games of the season.

Cunningham continued his solid play in 15 really effective minutes off the bench. He gave the Longhorns 13 points on an efficient 5-of-6 shooting from the field and a perfect 3-of-3 from beyond the arc. After this game, Cunningham is now shooting better than 43 percent from deep this season.

Throughout his time on the floor in this game, Cunningham gave the Longhorns a ton of boosts on the offensive end. All three of his rebounds were on the offensive glass as Cunningham continues to get it done to give Texas extra possessions.

Next. Takeaways from Texas' OT collapse vs. Illinois. dark

Cunningham helped move the Longhorns to 7-1 (0-0 Big 12) on the season with this dominant win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff. The way he’s playing in the minutes he is getting off the bench of late is proving to make a huge difference for Beard and the Longhorns.