Texas Basketball: 3 top 2024 NBA Draft Longhorns prospects

In six months, Texas basketball could have its first player selected in the NBA Draft in the last three years (since 2021).
Dillon Mitchell, Texas basketball
Dillon Mitchell, Texas basketball / Aaron E. Martinez/American-Statesman /
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Texas basketball has shown flashes of being the brilliant team many expected them to be this season. But Texas and head coach Rodney Terry haven't lived up to the preseason expectations consistently, especially in Big 12 play.

With one month remaining in the 2023-24 regular season, the Longhorns sit within striking distance of a single-digit seed in the NCAA Tournament. But Texas must improve its mark in Big 12 play down the stretch after starting 4-6 in the first 10 games of conference play.

At least one Texas basketball player likely to be selected in the 2024 NBA Draft

The final eight games of the regular season will be critical for the Longhorns to set themselves up for success entering the postseason and the Big 12 Tournament.

The players that must step up down the stretch this season for the Longhorns not only have this team's postseason fate on the line, but also their NBA future. Texas has a handful of players who could be selected in the 2024 NBA Draft, or in future drafts, if they show out with a brighter spotlight on the team nationally down the stretch this season.

Here are three of the top Longhorns prospects for the 2024 NBA Draft to watch down the stretch this season.

Dylan Disu, PF/C

Texas's best player, when healthy, in the last 15 months has been senior big man Dylan Disu. The 6-foot-9 and 220-pound power forward/center has been nothing short of brilliant on the offensive end of the floor for the Longhorns since the second half of last season.

Disu emerged as a multi-level scorer capable of generating his own looks on offense against a range of different defenders positionally. He's a polished low-post scorer, a lethal mid-range shooter, and he's got a very effective floater he can hit from the paint or from the mid-range.

But the really significant development in Disu's game this season is his ability to drain three-pointers at such an efficient clip. Disu is shooting a career-high 53.3 percent from beyond the arc on over three attempts per game.

Disu's three-point shooting efficiency is what has really separated him as a potential stretch big man who can provide value as a reserve player in the NBA. His skill and fluidity combined with his ability to score from all levels in the settled half court offense is unique in modern college hoops.

Two other ways that Disu has improved his game are managing turnovers and facilitating on offense. Turnovers were a significant issue for Disu in the last few seasons. But he's doing a much better job of avoiding the unnecessary and costly turnover in the Big 12 this season, as he's posted a career-low 11.8 turnover percentage.

Disu has consistently improved his facilitating ability in the last two seasons, as he's become a more prominent ball-handler and playmaker for the Longhorns on offense. He's had multi-assist games in five of the last six outings for the Longhorns, which has led to him posting a career-best 11.7 assist percentage this season.

The limitations Disu faces regarding his NBA Draft scouting report are his smaller frame for a big man, still occasional turnover issues, and rebounding. At 6-foot-9, Disu would be on the smaller end of bigs in the NBA Draft in 2024. His smaller frame limits his ability to defend stronger and taller bigs in the paint.

The lack of size also limits how effective Disu is on the glass. He's never been an elite rebounder at the collegiate level, which is a knock against him regarding his draft stock.

Another factor that limits Disu's upside in the NBA is his age. If he takes his talents to the NBA next offseason, Disu will be one of the older players in this class (23 years old).

At the very least, though, I would expect some team to take a flier out on Disu to give him a shot in the Summer League and potentially earn a roster spot or a two-way contract next season to prove himself.

NBA Draft projection: Late second round to undrafted