Texas Basketball: 3 reasons why the Horns can win the Big 12 in 2023-24

Dylan Disu, Texas basketball. Mandatory Credit: Amy Kontras-USA TODAY Sports
Dylan Disu, Texas basketball. Mandatory Credit: Amy Kontras-USA TODAY Sports /
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Max Abmas, Texas basketball
Max Abmas, Texas basketball. Mandatory Credit: Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports /

Roughly three weeks from the start of the 2023-24 regular season, head coach Rodney Terry and No. 18 Texas basketball are readying up for the Orange-White Scrimmage at Gregory Gymnasium in Austin on Oct. 17. Texas has two scrimmages before the start of the regular season on Nov. 6 at home at the Moody Center in Austin against the Incarnate Word Cardinals.

Terry and the Longhorns participate in the Orange-White Scrimmage later this week before hosting St. Edward’s for an exhibition game at the Moody Center on Oct. 30.

Texas enters this season with high expectations once again. The Longhorns were picked to finish third in the Big 12 media preseason poll last week, behind only the Houston Cougars and Kansas Jayhawks.

Why No. 18 Texas basketball can win the Big 12 for the 2023-24 season

Similarly high expectations were pegged for the Longhorns in the preseason AP Poll, which slotted Texas at No. 18 on Oct. 16. Texas was the third-highest-ranked team from the Big 12 in the preseason AP Poll, also behind No. 1 Kansas and No. 7 Houston.

Texas won the Big 12 Tournament crown last season and finished second in the conference standings during the regular season.

This Texas team has a lot of talent and a few key returning pieces from last year’s squad. Here are three reasons why the Longhorns can win the Big 12 in the 2023-24 season.

Floor spacing

Texas has a roster chocked full of sharpshooters heading into the 2023-24 campaign. Terry and the Longhorns staff bring back one player who was a 40+ percent shooter from three-point range last season, senior forward Brock Cunningham.

However, most of the floor spacing on this team was added through the transfer portal. Texas added three players who are at least 37.5 percent career three-point shooters via the transfer portal this offseason. Former Oral Roberts senior guard Max Abmas (38.8 percent career three-point shooter), UT-Arlington freshman guard Chendall Weaver (40.2 percent), and UCF senior guard/wing Ithiel Horton (37.6 percent) are all efficient shooters from deep in their careers.

Texas has multiple 40+ percent three-point shooters from last season on the roster for the first time since the 2008-09 campaign. This will be a game-changer in a conference where the best three-point shooting team has won the Big 12 regular season title in two of the last three years.