Can we trust Texas?
On Jan. 18 last year, they were 17-0; we know how that all ended
There are two schools of thought on the Texas Longhorns.
One school says: Whoa. With Saturday's 74-63 win over the Kansas Jayhawks -- who hadn't lost at home in more than 65 tries -- safely tucked in this team's pocket, the chances for an undefeated run through the Big 12 now have to be seriously considered, starting with Wednesday night's game at Oklahoma State. It's a big "if," but if Texas can take care of the Cowboys in Stillwater, get past Missouri at home on Saturday, and then turn around and win at Texas A&M on Monday, the "run the table" talk will really begin in earnest. At that point 16-0 could be a real possibility.
The other school of thought on the Longhorns, however, says: Whoa. How excited should we really get about a team that lost to USC by 17? After all, isn't this just the latest in a series of fad teams out of Austin? Look at last year. On Jan. 18, 2010, Texas was 17-0 and ranked No. 1 in the nation. From that point forward the Horns went 7-10. They limped into the NCAA tournament, where they lost in the first round to an opponent (Wake Forest) that was about to fire its coach. Forgive us if we take a wait and see attitude in January toward yet another talented group of Longhorns.
Which school of thought is correct? Well, both are. Let me walk you through my recommended set of responses to this Texas team. Think of it as two cheers for the Horns.
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John Gasaway has written for Basketball Prospectus since its inception in 2007. His college hoops commentary appears weekly on ESPN Insider. John's writing has also appeared at SportsIllustrated.com, as well as in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and Playboy.