#9 Texas Women's Basketball 2016-2017 Preview

Texas Longhorns
Overall Rank: #9
Conference Rank: #2 Big 12
Texas has quite a few holes to fill from their Elite Eight squad from a season ago, most notably center Imani Boyette and point guard Celina Rodrigo. However, two double digit scorers are back on the wing to help the Longhorns reload for another deep NCAA Tournament run. Brooke McCarty averaged a team high 11.8 points per game and was by far the team’s most prolific and consistent outside shooter. She connected on 41.4 percent of her 162 attempts from beyond the arc. Ariel Atkins can hit some outside shots too, but the 5-11 junior does most of her scoring by attacking the basket.
2015-16 Record: 31-5, 15-3
2015-16 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Karen Aston
Coach Record: 89-46 at Texas, 190-109 overall
Key Departed Players (starters in bold)
Imani Boyette, Center, 11.3 ppg
Empress Davenport, Guard, 6.9 ppg
Celina Rodrigo, Guard, 5.1 ppg
Brady Sanders, Guard, 2.3 ppg
Key Returning Players (starters in bold)
Brooke McCarty, Junior, Guard, 11.8 ppg
Brianna Taylor, Senior, Guard, 5.8 ppg
Ariel Atkins, Junior, Guard, 11.2 ppg
Lashann Higgs, Sophomore, Guard, 7.2 ppg
Kelsey Lang, Senior, Center, 6.5 ppg
Tasia Foman, Junior, Guard, 3.1 ppg
Jordan Hosey, Sophomore, Forward, 3.0 ppg
Olamide Aborowa, Sophomore, Forward, 0.7 ppg
Key New Players
Audrey-Ann Caron-Goudreau, Junior, Forward, JC Transfer
Khaleann Caron-Goudreau, Sophomore, Forward, Transfer from Vanderbilt
Joyner Holmes, Freshman, Guard/Forward
Alecia Sutton, Freshman, Guard
Jada Underwood, Freshman, Guard/Forward
Jatarie White, Junior, Forward, Transfer from South Carolina, not eligible this season
The backcourt also boasts plenty of returning experience with the likes of Brianna Taylor, Lashann Higgs and Tasia Foman. However, the likely answer at the point guard spot is incoming freshman Alecia Sutton. But Sutton is not the only freshman ready to make a big impact. Joyner Holmes, a versatile 6-3 wing, is widely considered the best recruit in this class and she will immediately help replace Boyette’s scoring and rebounding. The frontcourt also returns 6-5 center Kelsey Lang, so there is plenty of size on this team. The addition of Audrey-Ann Caron-Goudreau from the junior college ranks and Khaleann Caron-Goudreau from Vanderbilt will add even more quality options for Coach Karen Aston in the frontcourt. If all the pieces come together, this is a team that can return to the Elite Eight and be a serious contender to push Baylor for a Big 12 title.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 71.1 (56th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 56.4 (33, 2)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.5 (39, 3)
Field-Goal Defense: 35.4 (20, 3)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 4.6 (240, 8)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.1 (82, 3)
Free-Throw Percentage: 69.5 (177, 4)
Rebound Margin: 9.4 (16, 2)
Assists Per Game: 14.1 (101, 7)
Turnovers Per Game: 15.9 (167, 5)
Madness 2016 Women’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#1 Joyner Holmes
#8 Alecia Sutton
#77 Jada Underwood