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Updated: Tuesday, March 4, 2003 12:05 AM EST
NCAA BASKETBALL RECAP
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(7) Kansas 65, Texas Tech 56
KANSAS JAYHAWKS
Kansas Jayhawks
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TEXAS TECH RED RAIDERS
Texas Tech Red Raiders
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LUBBOCK, Texas (Ticker) -- Keith Langford may have burst Texas Tech's bubble.

Langford score 14 of his 20 points in the first half as No. 7 Kansas clinched a share of the Big 12 Conference title with a 65-56 victory over the Red Raiders.

Texas Tech (16-10, 6-9 Big 12) needed victories in its final two games to finish the season with a .500 conference record and enhance its NCAA Tournament chances. But the Red Raiders fell to 0-4 at home against ranked opponents and have surpassed the number of losses from last year's 23-9 campaign.

"We're a lot different team," Texas Tech coach Bob Knight said. "We're not the same team. (Former center Andy) Ellis is a huge factor in that."

Langford, a Texas native, scored six points in a 10-2 spurt as Kansas (23-6, 13-2) took the lead for good with 11 minutes left in the first half, 16-8. The Jayhawks took a 39-28 advantage into halftime after shooting 61 percent (17-of-28) in the first 20 minutes.

"Our offensive execution was really the key to the game," Kansas coach Roy Williams said. "We were unselfish, we moved the ball. In the first half, that was really important that we moved the ball well."

A layup by Red Raiders freshman John Ofoegbu cut the Red Raiders' deficit to 54-47 with eight minutes remaining. Kansas quickly pushed the ball upcourt and found Kirk Hinrich, who nailed a 3-pointer for a 10-point lead.

"In the second half, we were kind of in there and Hinrich made a big basket, a 3-pointer from deep in the corner," Knight said. "The kind of shot that kind of sticks a pin in your balloon."

A jumper by Andre Emmett with five minutes remaining pulled Texas Tech within 59-53. But Aaron Miles drilled a short jumper and added a steal and a layup for a 10-point advantage with 4:24 to go.

Robert Tomaszek answered with a short jumper before Langford capped his night with a short jumper with 3:18 left for the final points of the game for Kansas. Langford made 10-of-13 shots, many of them coming on medium-range jumpers.

"He hasn't been as offensively involved recently as he was tonight," Williams said. "They are focusing on Kirk and Nick (Collison), Keith is a third option for us. He is important for us."

Collison added 13 points and Miles and Hinrich each scored 10 for Kansas, which can win the Big 12 title outright Sunday at Missouri. The Jayhawks have won 29 of their last 31 conference games.

"Starting the season, everyone thinks it's going to go down to the last week," Williams said. "We feel good about this, (but) this is not going to do us any good on Sunday."

Emmett led Texas Tech with 16 points and Kasib Powell added 10 and 10 rebounds. The smaller Red Raiders were pushed around and outscored in the paint, 40-28.

Kansas held a 30-27 edge on the glass, with Collison and Bryant Nash each grabbing seven. The Jayhawks have won 10 out of 11 games.

Texas Tech looked like a strong candidate for a second straight NCAA Tournament berth after completing its non-conference schedule with a 10-1 mark and wins at Minnesota and San Diego State. The Red Raiders have struggled throughout the Big 12 season and seven of its nine conference losses have been by nine points or fewer, including Saturday's 76-71 defeat here to Texas.

"These last two games, we played fairly even in a lot of categories," Knight said. "(But) for us to play with the two teams we played this weekend, we've got to play better."

Kansas improved to 14-1 against Texas Tech and Williams pushed his record to 8-1 against Knight.


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