This is it. This is what I needed to see in order to lock in Texas 6/1 to make a Final Four. You simply can't have a sober Chris Beard around and expect success. I fell for that trap last year thinking his culture would just automatically go over to Texas even without Mark Adams by his side. Hand up, I was wrong on them last year. They couldn't really shoot. Their offense was stagnant at hell. They were never really healthy and they took too long to figure out how to play together. That's how you end up as a 6 seed.
But this year?
This year is different since Chris Beard is drinking beer again. That was really step 1 to turning around the Texas program. You can't cut out beer in your first year. That's just dumb. This year the outlook is already better. They are 2nd on KenPom's preseason ratings. They are projected to have the best defense in the country. Again, this is all contingent mostly on staying healthy, specifically Dylan Disu. He was a double-double guy at Vandy and actually looked the part. He missed basically all of last season's offseason and battled injuries. If he's healthy that's a guy that can anchor the middle while being a pick-and-pop guy along with Christian Bishop.
That's really the key here too. Last year's team was all transfers. Most of them stayed this year. You're bringing back Marcus Carr, Disu, Bishop, Timmy Allen and even Brock Cunningham. That's a good start. That's a recipe for how to have success in college basketball, especially when you add a Tyrese Hunter from Iowa State to the mix or a Dillon Mitchell, who was a consensus top-5 recruit. They have the blend now of experience and incoming talent.
You still need Carr to shoot better than 33% from three and 43% from two. But the recipe is right there. It starts with Beard bringing back some good juju and drinking beer. Everyone knows you need a beer after a big game to help get ready for the next one, especially in the Big 12.
Texas is currently 6/1 to make the Final Four on the Barstool Sportsbook. You have my attention.
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