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Collison Leads Kansas Rebound

January 28, 2003|From Associated Press

Nick Collison was not about to let Kansas' first three-game losing streak in nine years occur on his watch.

So the senior center had the best game of his college career, scoring 24 points and grabbing 23 rebounds as No. 12 Kansas held on for a wild 90-87 victory over No. 3 Texas Monday night at Lawrence, Kan.

"I just made up my mind that I was going to be very aggressive," said Collison, who fouled out with a little more than a minute left. "We really needed a win. We really needed a lot of rebounds against a big, physical Texas team. I think it might be my best game."

Coach Roy Williams was sure that it was.

"I don't know if I've ever seen a person be so relentless on the backboard as Nick Collison was," Williams said. "If those NBA scouts sitting over there tonight say there's anybody in the world with a bigger heart, then they're just blind."

Students stormed the court, stomping and yelling after the Jayhawks, 14-5 overall and 4-1 in the Big 12, halted the eight-game winning streak of the Longhorns (13-3, 4-1).

Michael Lee made two free throws with 29 seconds left and Texas missed two three-point attempts in the final seconds, including one by point guard T.J. Ford, who had 25 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists. Ford's three-point attempt at the buzzer was barely short.

Kirk Hinrich had 25 points for the Jayhawks. After Kansas' Keith Langford missed two free throws with 10 seconds remaining, Texas hurried down the court but missed their three-point attempts.

No. 14 Connecticut 74, St. John's 68 -- Sophomore Ben Gordon had 23 points, six assists and six rebounds, including two key rebounds down the stretch, to help the Huskies maintain their lead and win a Big East game at New York.

Emeka Okafor had 21 points, 13 rebounds and six blocked shots for the Huskies, 13-3 overall and 4-1 in the Big East. Marcus Hatten had 26 points for the Red Storm (10-6, 3-3).

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