Bracketology: What to monitor as we approach Texas vs Baylor

The Road to the Final Four ramps up in the coming weeks as seeding solidifies in college basketball. The Texas Longhorns were ranked as the No. 5 overall team and top No. 2 seed in the bracket reveal ahead of last Saturday’s games.

Given the resume it already has and how the tournament committee views Texas, a win over Baylor could go a long way toward tournament seeding. The Longhorns face one of their top three road tests of the season in facing the Baylor Bears.

Scott Drew’s team has owned Texas in recent history. Earlier this season, Texas narrowly defeated Baylor at home to snap the Bears’ run of dominance. They will likely bring their best basketball to defeat the most well-known team in Texas.

Here are a few things to keep an eye on for Texas as the regular season closes.

Lock in a No. 2 seed or better?

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The Texas Longhorns have more than enough Quad 1 wins to warrant No. 2 seed consideration. There’s an argument to be made that a win over Baylor in Waco becomes the team’s best win of the year. Even should the team lose to both TCU and Kansas, a win could lock Texas into a No. 2 seed.

Heating up at the right time?

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Tyrese Hunter and Arterio Morris had strong shooting performances against Iowa State. Marcus Carr and Jabari Rice have shot well for much of the season. If Texas can expect great play from its guards in March, they’ll be a tough out in the NCAA Tournament.

Another opening on the No. 1 seed line?

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Last week’s No. 1 overall seed Alabama struggled against South Carolina on Wednesday. Purdue suffered an 14-point loss to Maryland not long ago. Texas may not have to take Kansas’ seat in the battle of musical chairs for a No. 1 seed.

Can Texas finally defend the post?

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Dylan Disu has had a breakout defensive season for Texas in 2023. Disu has prevented multiple scores around the basket with huge blocked shots. Even so, the woes that plagued the team against Purdue reared their ugly head against Tennessee. The Longhorns’ struggles in post defense foreshadow its tournament exit should they face a team with great post play. Texas can start by defending the basket against Baylor’s front court.

Does Kansas falter?

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The Kansas Jayhawks face West Virginia and Texas Tech at home before their finale against Texas. Neither Texas Tech or West Virginia have proven to be an NCAA Tournament team. That might be to the teams’ advantage against Kansas. Both teams sit at 16-12, with the Red Raiders on a four-game winning streak. A loss to either team helps Texas’ case for a No. 1 seed over Kansas should they win the second matchup.

Story originally appeared on Longhorns Wire