Three keys for Texas A&M basketball to pull off the March Madness upset of a lifetime

Here are three areas for Texas A&M basketball fans to track closely in tonight's huge matchup.

Dec 16, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Texas A&M Aggies forward Henry Coleman III (15) and Houston
Dec 16, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Texas A&M Aggies forward Henry Coleman III (15) and Houston / Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports
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Keys for a Texas A&M basketball victory: Shooting the three-ball

Thirdly and finally, we have the aspect for the Aggies that has undoubtedly been the biggest difference over this last stretch: the three-point shooting. In the previous matchup, the Aggies shot 33% from three against the Cougars—and that's with Taylor going 6 of 14 from beyond the arc.

As I've covered, the Aggies didn't have Boots in the previous game, and Manny was a non-factor at that point (0-5 shooting, no 3PA, in 9 minutes). Jace Carter was 1 of 7. Coleman, Garcia, Solo, and Eli Lawrence were all 0 for 1. Hefner went 2 for 2 in 20 minutes (his only two shots).

You'd have to expect that things will look far different for the Aggies in this one. Taylor has reclaimed his previous form. Boots is playing smart and taking good looks. Obaseki's improved touch and ability to drive make him a tough matchup for anyone.

If the Aggies go below 35% from the arc, it feels like too big a hill for them to climb to expect them to win, unless they are somehow dominating the paint. It doesn't have to be a huge amount of attempts, but I think the Aggies at the very least need some timely makes from downtown if they want to end up on top here. Of course, I'd be completely fine with the long-ball dominance we saw against Ole Miss and Nebraska too, but I wouldn't count on it.

Ultimately, the guards will carry the Aggies here. With that being the case, the three-point shot will be a big player, as it is key to these three guys executing to their potential.