Texas' Joyner Holmes(24), Ariel Atkins(23), Brooke McCarty and Alecia Sutton(1) huddle before McCarty's free throw against TCU during a Big 12 Conference basketball game at the Frank Erwin Center Saturday, Jan. 7, 2017. (Stephen Spillman / for AMERICAN-STATESMAN)

BEVO BEAT Women's Basketball

Texas women rank fourth in ESPN’s (way too early) basketball poll for 2017-18

Strong backcourt, emergence of Joyner Holmes are primary reasons Longhorns are moving up

Posted April 17th, 2017

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  • Last season, the Longhorns made their fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and advanced to their third consecutive NCAA Sweet 16.

In the opinion of one publication, the Texas women’s basketball team continues to get closer to its goal of reaching the Final Four.

On Monday, the Longhorns were ranked No. 4 in ESPN.com’s Way-Too-Early Top 25 for the 2017-18 season.

Texas Longhorns Brooke McCarty drives to the basket against South Carolina Gamecocks defense during the first half of a NCAA college baserball game, Saturday, Thursday. Dec. 1, 2016 at Frank Ewin Center, Austin, Texas. RICARDO B. BRAZZIELL/AMERICAN-STATESMAN

According to ESPN bracketologist Charlie Creme, the Longhorns experienced backcourt of Brooke McCarty and Ariel Atkins and the development of Big 12 Freshman of the Year Joyner Holmes as the primary reasons for the No. 4 ranking of the Longhorns. He could have noted that the Longhorns will bank on a pair of freshmen who were named to the McDonald’s All-America team — Rellah Booth of Ocala, Fla., and Chasity Patterson of Houston.

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In 2016-17, the Longhorns posted a 25-9 overall record, marking the third consecutive 24-plus-win season for the Longhorns. Texas finished second in the Big 12 Conference for the second year in a row with a 15-3 league tally. The Longhorns made their fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and advanced to their third consecutive NCAA Sweet 16.

Karen Aston will be entering her sixth season as head coach of the Longhorns. They will be without two graduating seniors who were instrumental in UT’s recent rise as a basketball contender.

ESPN.com Way-Too-Early Top-25 for 2017-18 Season
1. UConn
2. Baylor
3. Ohio State
4. Texas
5. Notre Dame
6. South Carolina
7. Stanford
8. Tennessee
9. Mississippi State
10. Louisville
11. UCLA
12. Duke
13. Oregon
14. West Virginia
15. Missouri
16. Marquette
17. Maryland
18. Arizona State
19. Oklahoma
20. USF
21. Michigan
22. California
23. LSU
24. DePaul
25. Florida State

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