Texas received good news this week that quickly became great news, when Marcus Carr joined Timmy Allen in returning to Austin for another college basketball season. Those combined decisions shot Texas from unranked in CBS Sports writer Gary Parrish’s Top 25 and 1 rankings to the No. 16 spot.
“The only changes from Version 5.0 of the Top 25 And 1 to Version 6.0 of the Top 25 And 1 are as follows: Texas has entered at No. 16 thanks to Marcus Carr announcing that he will, just like teammate Timmy Allen, use his extra year of eligibility to play one more season for the Longhorns,” Parrish wrote. “Ohio State is up to No. 25 after the Buckeyes secured a commitment from West Virginia transfer Sean McNeil. And Saint Louis is back in at No. 26 thanks to Yuri Collins’ decision to withdraw from the transfer portal and return to the Atlantic 10 program, where he led the nation in assists per game last season.
“Those three developments pushed Oregon, Virginia and Oklahoma State out of the Top 25 And 1. So the Ducks, Cavaliers and Cowboys are now essentially No. 27, No. 28 and No. 29.”
In Texas’ ranking section, Parrish expanded on the Longhorns’ case for a boosted spot.
“The Longhorns’ ranking is based on Texas returning the top two scorers from a team that finished 15th at KenPom – namely Timmy Allen and Marcus Carr, each of whom is using a fifth year of eligibility,” Parrish wrote. “Chris Beard is adding to that core a top-15 recruiting class highlighted by five-star prospects Dillon Mitchell and Arterio Morris.”
Carr’s announcement came as the bigger surprise of the two, with the former Minnesota and Pittsburgh product citing the program’s expectations and move to a new arena in his statement.
“Standard set. Expectations remain high,” Carr said. “Bar Risen and never been one to walk underneath. Longhorn Nation, I have a promise to keep. See you in the Moody (Center, the program’s new home arena, which opened this week)!”
Texas started the season ranked at No. 5 in the preseason Associated Press Top 25 Poll, and while the Longhorns didn’t live up to those expectations, Texas did win 22 games, including the Longhorns’ first postseason win since Rick Barnes’ penultimate season in Austin. And Texas finished the season ranked at No. 15, according to statistics website KenPom.
Allen may have been Texas’ best player season-long, leading the Longhorns in scoring and rebounding and finishing second in assists. Carr had a bit streakier season, but was trending up and led the team in assists, while ranking second to Allen in scoring.
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While Carr averaged 11.4 points per game for the season, he upped that to 13.1 points per contest in Big 12 play, and he ended the season on a high note, averaging 19 points and eight assists in the NCAA Tournament, while committing three total turnovers over the two games.