Coach: Rick Barnes (14 seasons at Texas 330-130), Overall 533=262, 25 seasons
2011-12: Record 20-14 overall, 9-9 in Big 12 (6th)
Starters Returning (3) Jonathan Holmes, Myck Kabongo, Julien Lewis
Preseason Tournament: Maui, Jimmy V Classic
Top Non-Conference Games: vs. UCLA, at North Carolina, at Michigan State
Transfer Out: Sterling Gibbs (Seton Hall)
Early Departure: J’Covan Brown
Texas has made the NCAA tournament all of Rich Barnes 14 seasons at Texas but for the most part they have underachieved in the big dance. However, credit is due to Barnes to reloading the Texas program and getting them to the big dance. The longhorns lose their top scorer but they return a handful of young talent. The Longhorns return 4 quality sophomores and also bring in a top recruiting class for this season.
Leading the way for the Longhorns is point guard Myck Kabongo (9.6 ppg). However, the status for Kabongo could be up in the air this season with questions about a relationship he had with an agent. Kabongo has not played a game this season. He is probably one of the fastest players in the country; he is also a good passer but he needs to improve his shooting and decision making skills. Joining him in the backcourt will be Sheldon McClellan (11.3 ppg). He was the Longhorns second leading scorer despite coming off the bench. He excels at attacking the rim. The Longhorns will likely start and 3 guard lineup and that guard will be Julien Lewis (7.8 ppg). He is the best three point shooter on a team that struggles to shot the ball. Providing depth here will be freshman DeMarucs Holland and Javan Felix. Felix will start at point guard with Kabongo out. Also lone seniors Dean Melchionni and Andrew Dick will see limited time.
The questions for this team lies in the frontcourt, mostly because of youth. The leader in the frontcourt will be power forward Jonathan Holmes (7.1 ppg). He can score both inside and out. He was the team’s second leading rebounder last season. Likely to start along Holmes will be top recruit Cameron Ridley. He is a very big body that will produce right away on the defensive end and rebounding the ball. The two top options off the bench will be Jaylen Boyd (3.4 ppg) and another big athletic freshman Prince Ibeh. Three freshman will add more depth in Ioannis Papapetrou, Danny Newsome, and Connor Lammert.