As we enjoy the Lamarcus Aldridge fairwell tour, we do so with more than a little bit of sadness. Not only is Lamarcus an outstanding talent and a huge boost to the Texas program, but, were he to stay another year, along with Gibson and Tucker, the Horns chances of a national title would increase exponentially. This is not to say that Horns are incapable of doing it this year, but another crack at it next year certainly would increase the chances of it happening.
Especially because next year will feature the arrival of incoming recruit Kevin Durant, widely considered (behind Greg Oden) to be the nation's second best talent. Durant is so talented that he'd be an instant lottery pick if the NBA rules hadn't been recently amended to exclude players his age from entering the draft. Forced to attend college for a year, the North Carolina born star chose Texas, a surprise to many considering his ties to ACC country.
Super recruit Kevin Durant chose Texas over closer to home schools like Duke and North Carolina.
Durant might have the same kind of impact on Texas that Carmelo Anthony had on Syracuse when he led them to a national title (knocking out TJ Ford and Texas along the way). If Aldridge were to somehow stay at Texas, it's hard to imagine a better team. Tucker, Aldridge, Gibson, and Durant? Yes, please.
As is, Durant will likely enter without Aldridge and, perhaps, Gibson. Still, it takes a special player to take you to the top of the mountain, as Vince Young did. As TJ Ford almost did (and would have done had he stayed another year). Can Durant do that for the Horns in just one year? It'll be a longshot without Lamarcus. But it's going to be fun to watch.
The future remains bright for the Horns hoops team.