#34 Texas Longhorns: College Basketball 111 in 111


texas longhorns cheerleaders

Welcome to The Sports Bank’s third annual college basketball season preview series.  Two years we looked at 99 teams in 99 days.  Last year, we were slightly more aggressive and expanded to 111 teams in 111 days and will do so again as we look ahead to the 2012-2013 season.

We will rank the 75 power conference teams and top 36 mid-majors in reverse power ranking order.  We’ll break down rosters, transfers, incoming freshmen, non-conference schedules, and pick a player to watch for each team.

The Texas Longhorns were young last season and with no upperclassmen on their roster this year, Rick Barnes has a an even less experienced though talented team.  One of the biggest question marks is the status of starting point guard Myck Kabongo.

TEXAS LONGHORNS
Last Season: 6th, 9-9 in Big 12, 20-14 overall
Predicted Big 12 Finish: 3rd

Projected Depth Chart
C: Cameron Ridley (Fr)/Prince Ibeh (Fr)
PF: Jonathan Holmes (So)/Jaylen Bond (So)/Connor Lammert (Fr)
G/F: Shelden McClellan (So)/Ioannis Papapetrou (Fr)
SG: Julien Lewis (So)/DeMarcus Holland (Fr)
PG: Myck Kabongo (So)/Javan Felix (Fr)

Gone: SG-J’Covan Brown, C-Alexis Wangmene, C-Clint Chapman, PG-Sterling Gibbs (transfer-Seton Hall)

2012-2013 Outlook:
As a freshman, Kabongo had a somewhat disappointing first year in Austin failing to live up to the hype that surrounded him coming out of high school.  The NCAA is investigating whether or not an agent paid for an off-season trip and workout which puts his eligibility up in the air.  The Longhorns are playing it safe for now and holding Kabongo out of preseason scrimmages in hopes that everything gets cleared up by the start of the season.

Kabongo struggled shooting the ball last season and turned it over too often but has the ability to be a dynamic floor leader.  If he is indeed suspended for a period of time, the point guard duties will fall on the shoulders of freshman Javan Felix.  He is a pure distributor as well and would be thrust into a major role rather than transitioning to the college game behind Kabongo.

Shelden McClellan and Julien Lewis were key contributors during their freshman campaigns as well.  McClellan was second on the team in scoring while Lewis struggled shooting the ball.  Both guys will be asked to take on more of a scoring load to help fill the void left behind by J’Covan Brown.

Texas loses a pair of seniors upfront but welcomes in McDonald’s All-Ameircan Cameron Ridley.  The 6’9, 270 pounder is a force down low with great hands and swift feet.  Conditioning might be an issue for the big fella early on but he is expected to add a low post presence that the team lacked most of last season.

Jonathan Holmes figures to retain his starting spot at power forward.  Though a bit undersized at 6-7, he knows how to throw his body around and be physical in the paint.  Jaylen Bond has a similar build and effectiveness and will once again be a valuable contributor off the bench due to his ability to crash the glass.

Bond is the only non-freshman coming off the bench.  The ‘Horns will rely on 6-10 Prince Ibeh as an athletic shot blocker.  He runs the floor extremely well but is still raw with his offensive game.  Connor Lambert is another 6-10 body in the frontcourt but more versatile since he can stretch defenses with his three-point shooting.  Ioannis Papapetrou and DeMarcus Holland will have a chance to earn immediate minutes on the wing as well.

Kabongo’s status certainly puts things in limbo for the time being.  Assuming he returns at some point before Big 12 play begins and shows improvement from last year, this young Texas team should easily head back to the NCAA Tournament for the 19th straight year.  How competitive they can be on the national stage will be determined by how well the team gels and acclimates themselves to the college game.

Player to Watch: Cameron Ridley
Texas didn’t get a whole lot of production a year ago with the center tandem of Clint Chapman and Alexis Wangmene.  Ridley is an immediate upgrade in terms of his low post scoring ability and with teams having focus on the big man down low, it should open up some space for the shooters on the wing.

Key Non-Conference Games:
11/19 vs. Chaminade (Maui Invitational)
11/20 vs. Illinois/USC (Maui Invitational)
11/21 vs. North Carolina/Mississippi State/Marquette/Butler (Maui Invitational)
12/4 vs. Georgetown (Jimmy V Classic)
12/8 vs. UCLA (in Houston)
12/19 vs. North Carolina
12/22 at Michigan State

OTHER 111 IN 111’S:
#35 Miami Hurricanes
#36 Purdue Boilermakers
#37 Alabama Crimson Tide
#38 St. Joseph’s Hawks
#39 Murray State Racers
#40 VCU Rams
#41 Davidson Wildcats
#42 Stanford Cardinal
#43 UMass Minutemen
#44 St. John’s Red Storm
#45 Butler Bulldogs
#46 Florida State Seminoles
#47 Drexel Dragons
#48 St. Louis Billikens
#49 West Virginia Mountaineers
#50 BYU Cougars
#51 Temple Owls
#52 Washington Huskies
#53 California Golden Bears
#54 Kansas State Wildcats
#55 Nevada Wolfpack
#56 Colorado Buffaloes
#57 Iowa State Cyclones
#58 Northern Iowa Panthers
#59 Colorado State Rams
#60 Iowa Hawkeyes
#61 South Florida Bulls
#62 Valparaiso Crusaders
#63 Illinois Fighting Illini
#64 Arkansas Razorbacks
#65 Wichita State Shockers
#66 George Mason Patriots
#67 Virginia Cavaliers
#68 Villanova Wildcats
#69 Maryland Terrapins
#70 Marshall Thundering Herd
#71 Iona Gaels
#72 Northwestern Wildcats
#73 Oklahoms State Cowboys
#74 Rutgers Scarlet Knights
#75 USC Trojans
#76 UConn Huskies
#77 Harvard Crimson
#78 Xavier Musketeers
#79 Ole Miss Rebels
#80 Clemson Tigers
#81 Oregon State Beavers
#82 Texas A&M Aggies
#83 Providence Friars
#84 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
#85 Oklahoma Sooners
#86 Lehigh Mountain Hawks
#87 Washington State Cougars
#88 Long Beach State 49ers
#89 Belmont Bruins
#90 Vanderbilt Commodores
#91 Dayton Flyers
#92 Houston Cougars
#93 UCF Knights
#94 Old Dominion Monarchs
#95 Oregon Ducks
#96 LSU Tigers
#97 South Carolina Gamecocks
#98 Seton Hall Pirates
#99 Georgia Bulldogs
#100 DePaul Blue Demons
#101 Boston College Eagles
#102 Penn State Nittany Lions
#103 Arizona State Sun Devils
#104 Virginia Tech Hokies
#105 Texas Tech Red Raiders
#106 Auburn Tigers
#107 Wake Forest Demon Deacons
#108 TCU Horned Frogs
#109 Mississippi State Bulldogs
#110 Utah Utes
#111 Nebraska Cornhuskers

David Kay is a senior feature NBA DraftNBA, and college basketball writer for the Sports Bank.  He also heads up the NBA and college basketball material at Walter Football.com and is a former contributor at The Washington Times Communities.  David has appeared on numerous national radio programs spanning from Cleveland to New Orleans to Honolulu.  He also had the most accurate 2011 NBA Mock Draft and the most accurate 2012 NBA Mock Draft on the internet (Yup, repeat champ… #humblebrag.)

You can follow him on Twitter at David_Kmiecik.

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  1. Big 12 M5: 11.01.12 EditionRush The Court | Rush The Court says:

    [...] about (wonder if outsiders say the same thing about us? Probably). But here’s a good look at what to expect from Texas this season. It’s not earth-shattering, of course. The Longhorns are young, [...]

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