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Sweet 16 Sleeper

It’s beginning to smell a lot like March Madness! Time to pretend that you have been watching college basketball the whole season and know who is going to do well in tournament. You know all of the upsets, the top seeds, and the sleeper team no one is really giving a chance to.

And team that can do some really damage in March Madness is the Texas Longhorns.

(Tom Reel/ San Antonio Express-News) G Isaiah Taylor

If you need to look for a team to shock some people, you look no further than a Shaka Smart coached basketball team. This basketball team is flooded with upperclassmen talent. The Longhorns leading scorer is junior G Isaiah Taylor. He averages 15.5 PPG and is the leading assist man with 5 a game. And senior G Javan Felix is one of the Longhorns’ sharpshooters. He averages 11.1 PPG and has a nice shot from behind the arc.

Chris Covatta/ Getty Images C Cameron Ridley
(Chris Covatta/ Getty Images)
C Cameron Ridley

The upperclassmen big men for Texas are a key on offense and on defense. 6’9” 285-pound senior C Cameron Ridley averages a double double, 12.7 PPG and 10 boards a game. Also add 3.4 BPG game to his double double stat line too. His co-host for the block party is 6’10” senior Prince Ibeh gives Texas 2 BPG. And F Connor Lammert gives the Longhorns great minutes and adds almost 7 PPG and 5.4 RPG, which is second on the team.

Texas guard Tevin Mack (0) shoots after getting past Kansas State guard Justin Edwards, left, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Manhattan, Kan., Monday, Feb. 22, 2016. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)
Texas G Tevin Mack (Orlin Wagner/ AP Photo)

Every good team nowadays needs good freshmen talents to push forward in the tournament. Freshmen Eric Davis Jr. and Kerwin Roach Jr. gives the Longhorns great energy off of the bench. They both average around 7 PPG and almost 3 RPG. And as they get into tournament play, Freshman G Tevin Mack will show his promise. With his 6’6” height at the G/F position and his athleticism he can guard many position and other versatile players.

Joe Lunardi has them as a 5 seed as of February 29, 2016. With the coaching style of Shaka Smart, this Texas team is a very good pick for a Sweet 16 spot. This team has already recorded 4 wins versus top 10 opponents this year, which is tied for a school record. This might be Smart’s most talented team and at VCU he did a lot with considerably less talent. This team’s guard play can match up with most teams projected to come into the tournament. But what I think pushing this team to the Sweet 16 or beyond is their bigs.  Not many teams in the nation are blessed with talented big men.

Orlin Wagner/ AP
(Orlin Wagner/ AP) HC Shaka Smart

Combined with the coaching staff, the talent, and the experience, this Texas Longhorns team is poised for a great run in the NCAA Tournament.

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