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Vic Schaefer on UT's ranking: 'I'm used to paying mortgages ... I'm not paying any rent.'

Texas head coach Vic Schaefer talks to his team during a timeout in a game against Idaho at the Erwin Center earlier this month.

On Monday night, Vic Schaefer sounded more like a realtor than a basketball coach.

Following a 62-52 win at Kansas State, Schaefer discussed Texas' ranking in the Associated Press' basketball poll. On Monday, Texas was tied with South Florida for the 20th spot in the poll. It was UT's highest ranking since the preseason poll for the 2019-20 season.

Schaefer, meanwhile, is used to coaching a top-10 program. Over his previous four seasons at Mississippi State, Schaefer's Bulldogs were listed among the 10 best teams in 73 of the 78 polls released by the AP. Mississippi State was ranked as high as second during the 2017-18 campaign.

Said Schaefer: "I'm amazed at the growth that this (Texas) team has had and how far they've come in such a short period of time. I put on the board, we're now living in the top-20, that 13,12 to 25 is real fluid. That's kind of the rent district. Those top 10 (teams), those are paying mortgages. Once I'm in, I'm used to paying mortgages. We paid the mortgage tonight to live in the top 20 for another week. I'm not paying any rent. I want them to embrace it, own it."

Texas was last listed as a top-10 team in the AP's poll on Nov. 26, 2018. The Longhorns, though, improved to 6-1 with their 10-point win over the Wildcats.

Texas is now off until a home game against Lamar on Dec. 29. After completing their COVID-19 tests on Tuesday, players will head home for the holidays. Texas has four out-of-state players on its roster, but Schaefer said "I want them to go home. They need a break. These kids have been so good."

The Longhorns must be back on campus by Dec. 27. They will be tested upon their return. Schaefer said his players have been instructed to only see immediate family members while they are home.

"I've read them the Riot Act," Schaefer said. "I told them my job might be on the line if they don't do what I'm asking them to do."