Saturday, November 17, 2018

Early Season Promise

"And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart."
Galatians 6:9

Yeah, we get it. You're supposed to blow out the Citadel in an early season non-conference home game. Well, guess what?!? These are exactly the type of games that have given the Longhorns fits in recent years.

Last night's blowout win came from a level of team play we haven't seen in ages.  In addition, there's a level of depth that allows the team to compete regardless of who's on the floor.  There's a world of difference between a seven man rotation and a ten man rotation.

The biggest change is that there now appears to be a legit inside presence on offense.  In addition to last season's breakout star Dylan Osetkowski, Jerico Sims and freshman Jaxon Hayes are stepping up.  And having a real inside game frees things up at the perimeter.

Speaking of the perimeter: What a night for Snoop Roach.  In addition to scoring his 1000th point in Burnt Orange, his second half dunk was the final momentum shift in the Longhorns favor.  Could be on his way to a monster senior season.

Elsewhere in the backcourt, sophomore Matt Coleman continued his solid play from last season.  Sophomore Jase Febres' scoring ability continues to improve.  That being said, Junior transfer Elijah Mitrou-Long (#55) might be this season's breakout star.

Obviously, Shaka Smart's tenure has been inconsistent (at best).  Still, his recruits are now sophomores and juniors.  The team chemistry that emerged down the stretch last season appears to have grown.  It'll be interesting to see where Shaka can take it.

Bottom Line:  You still need to play the games.  But there are no obvious red flags.  That's more than we can say about other recent seasons.

Snoop Roach's dunk up-close 

Dylan Osetkowski dunk

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