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Around the Big 12 in Basketball: Aw, Shucks

Pretty much nothing went right in the last seven days for the Big 12, Texas aside.

NCAA Basketball: Final Four-National Championship-Virginia vs Texas Tech Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

If you were to ask me last week what the ideal scenario for Big 12 basketball was, it would have involved TCU beating Texas and winning the NIT and Texas Tech winning the NCAA Tournament.

Well, none of that happened. Texas beat TCU and won the NIT, and Tech was on the end of one of the more heartbreaking title game losses in the new millennium. The basketball gods giveth, and the basketball gods, they taketh away.

Texas Tech: I feel bad for our tortilla-chucking, car-flipping, Old Town Road-listening brothers and sisters in Lubbock. The Red Raiders were oh-so-close to winning the Big 12’s first men’s basketball title since 2008. If they had guarded De’Andre Hunter in the corner, or drawn up a better play on the final possession of regulation, or if Jarrett Culver hadn’t had his worst shooting night of his career, or if Tech had gotten luckier on a couple of calls in overtime....

But life is full of what-ifs, and if a frog had wings it wouldn’t bump its rear end every time it hopped. Chris Beard will bring Tech back on another deep tournament run next year, mark my words. Hopefully by then, Lubbock will have returned to a sense of relative normalcy.

Texas: Well, of course the Longhorns won a national title, what did you expect?

If this saves Shaka Smart’s job, it’s going to be very funny. I like Shaka, and much like Charlie Strong, I think he’s a good coach and a good man who just didn’t quite fit in Austin. He’d be better off at another P5 program, and Texas would probably be better off with another head coach, but they’re stuck in this loveless marriage for another year. And speaking of loveless marriages...

TCU: Jamie allegedly tried to run off on us, and yet here we are, raising the kids together and trying not to fight over breakfast.

I was in and out of cell service/sobriety last weekend, so I never actually saw the official news blast that Dixon was staying in Fort Worth. It just sort of fizzled out, a few day’s worth of speculation and panic that ultimately amounted to nothing. Congratulations should be given to Jeremiah Donati for winning his first major battle as athletic director.

But I’d be lying if I said I’m not worried about how this impacts TCU going forward. I’m personally happy Dixon is back. I’m sure many others are dismayed with how he handled this whole thing. And if recruits think he has one foot out the door, well, that’s not exactly a good sign.

Dixon staying is, by itself, obviously a coup for TCU. It just might be the outside factors — the fan attitude, the perception among recruits, a potential lack of trust — that take the shine off this win.