Predicting Texas's next portal loss after Chris Johnson

Who will be the next Texas basketball player to enter the portal this spring after Chris Johnson and Gavin Perryman?

Tyrese Hunter, Texas basketball
Tyrese Hunter, Texas basketball / Sara Diggins/American-Statesman / USA
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Tyrese Hunter, Texas basketball
Tyrese Hunter, Texas basketball / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Tyrese Hunter, G

The other Longhorns starter who's status for the 2024-25 season at Texas is in question early this offseason is junior guard Tyrese Hunter. The third-year guard and one-time Big 12 transfer has started two years at Texas and one year at Iowa State, when he took home the Big 12 Newcomer of the Year honors during the 2021-22 season.

But the last two years have not gone exactly according to plan for Hunter. He regressed statistically year-over-year in Big 12 play during an up-and-down first year at Texas during the 2022-23 season.

This past season, Hunter was better in some areas, but he still struggled to score the ball consistently and be a true threat on the offensive end in the starting backcourt with Abmas, one of the all-time great scorers in the modern history of college hoops.

Where Hunter did really step up his game during the 2023-24 season was on the defensive end of the floor. He tied a career-high averaging nearly two steals per game in Big 12 play while posting a 2.5 defensive box plus/minus in conference play last season.

Hunter's defensive prowess and disruptiveness during the season that was helped provide stability for the Longhorns on the perimeter while Abmas was expelling most of his energy scoring the ball on offense.

The upside to Hunter returning for a third season at Texas would be providing that veteran leadership, proven experience and stability on the defensive end in the backcourt. Terry has always had Hunter starting at the guard spot during his time as the interim and full-time head coach at Texas.

Texas has won at least one NCAA Tournament game in the last two years under Terry as the head coach with Hunter starting at guard. That type of proven experience winning in a conference as good and deep as the Big 12 shouldn't be taken for granted in a veteran guard like Hunter.

On the other hand, Texas's backcourt needs more consistent two-way production, especially scoring the basketball, than it's gotten with Hunter in the starting unit in the last two seasons. With talented guards, like five-stars Cam Scott and Tre Johnson, arriving on campus this summer Texas could turn the page in the backcourt entering the SEC for the 2024-25 season.

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