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Texas eyes first Big 12 tournament title

Mar 16, 2008 - 1:39 PM No. 5 Kansas (30-3) vs. No. 8 Texas (28-5) 3:00 pm EDT

KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Ticker) - Eighth-ranked Texas hopes the third time is the charm when it faces No. 5 Kansas in the Big 12 Conference championship on Sunday.

The Longhorns, who have never won the tournament title, have lost to the Jayhawks in the championship game in each of the past two seasons.

The top seed, Texas defeated Oklahoma, 77-49, in the semifinals on Saturday. A.J. Abrams scored 24 points, making 7-of-12 3-pointers.

Texas and Kansas each had a 13-3 conference record, but the Longhorns beat the Jayhawks, 72-69, in their only meeting this season on February 11.

"From a pay-back factor, I think that we'll be excited to play because, you know, they beat us the first time and the way they beat us was physically they handled us a second half," Kansas coach Bill Self said. "So we'll be excited to play."

Brandon Rush scored a career-high 28 points as the Jayhawks posted a 77-71 victory over Texas A&M in the semifinals on Saturday.

The Jayhawks, who are third in the nation in field goal percentage, shot 54 percent (28-of-52) Saturday.