NORMAN -- Kevin Durant's one season at Texas was filled with highlights. But Durant and the Longhorns never played defense like this team. With Durant sitting behind the bench, the Longhorns' suffocating defense dominated from the opening tip to help No. 3 Texas cruise to a 68-52 win over Oklahoma Wednesday night at Lloyd Noble Center. Invited to attend the game free of charge due to the recent snow storm, fans packed Lloyd Noble Center. An estimated crowd of 12,000 witnessed what many are labeling the best defense in Texas coach Rick Barnes' 13 seasons in Austin. "Their defense is very good," said OU coach Jeff Capel. "They can pressure you. They're big. They have a lot of length. They can get up in the passing lanes. That affected us." Texas (21-3) has won all nine conference games by double digits and has started conference play 9-0 for the first time in 33 years, dating back the Southwest Conference. The 16-point win was Texas' largest winning margin over OU in Norman. "Texas is very good," Capel said. "They're the best team we've played all year, by far. They have all the ingredients to really make a deep run (in March). I thought we competed. They're just better than us." Led by a game-high 20 points from Jordan Hamilton, who drained three 3-pointers and also consistently scored in the paint, the Longhorns jumped out to a 16-4 lead, led by as many as 22 points and were up by double digits the final 35 minutes. Andrew Fitzgerald scored 16 points and Steven Pledger (13 points) to lead the Sooners (12-11, 4-5) who played catch-up from the start. "It was a good win," Barnes said. "I told our team coming in I'm not sure any team has improved more than Oklahoma. We were good tonight. Defensively we were real good." All five Texas starters scored in double figures for the first time this season. But it's defense, arguably the best defense in the country, that could help the Longhorns earn a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Longhorns have held nine conference opponents to 54.0 points and 36.2 percent shooting. The Sooners shot 32.1 percent. Texas is ranked third nationally in field goal percentage defense. "Their bench is really good," said OU senior guard Cade Davis. "There's not much of a drop off when those guys go to the bench, so they can keep that pressure up all game, push the ball and have fresh bodies." So is this the best defense in Barnes' 13 seasons at Texas? "It has a chance to be," Barnes said. "We have a number of guys that stay in front of the ball for the most part which allows you to extend your defense a little and guard the 3-point line. And we have some guys inside that when they do penetrate they can block some shots or change some shots. "And with our size we're able to crack down and get rebounds. But, yeah, this team, up to this point, has played about as well defensively consistently over the past month as any team we've had." Barnes was asked Durant, now an NBA All-Star with the Thunder, ever came close to playing this type of defense. "He tried," Barnes said, smiling. "He did get better at it. But it would be nice to have Big Skinny (Durant) out there with us. It was great seeing him tonight." NOTES: OU senior guard Cade Davis limped into the postgame press conference. Davis said he'll have to have his ankle examined but is hopeful he can play Saturday at Missouri... To show how big impact an Durant has had on Oklahoma City, the reigning NBA scoring champion was cheered as he returned to his seat at halftime and cheered again after the game as he headed up the tunnel for the Texas' locker room. One OU fan even coaxed Durant into taking a photo with him... OU freshman Tyler Neal played well during 20 minutes off the bench. Neal grabbed a team-high seven rebounds and scored six points... Texas dominated the boards (38-27) and also owned a sizeable edge in the paint (28-14)... The Sooners committed only eight turnovers, their lowest total in conference play... OU returns to action Saturday afternoon on the road against Missouri.