Not Enough Artillery:
The Red Raiders were not about to hang with a scoring machine like Missouri
if they got a combined six points from Javarez Willis
and Jordan Tolbert, but that’s precisely what they got. That duo played a
combined 33 minutes, went two of seven from the floor, two of five from the
free throw stripe and handed out two assists. When arguably the team’s best
inside and outside threats stink it up that badly, there’s just no hope.
Failing to Find
Shooters: The Tigers don’t lack for gunners, and every one of them had a
field day against the Red Raiders. Marcus Denmon, Kim English, Matt Pressey and Michael Dixon connected on
a combined 15 of 24 three point attempts, and several
of those conversions were wide open jumpers. The Red Raiders were all too
frequently lost and out of position on defense. I was a bit surprised Tech
didn’t go to the triangle-and-two that they’ve used occasionally this season
with some success. The man-to-man definitely was not working.
Inbounds: You can be certain that the Red Raiders will give up at least two
buckets per game on inbounds plays under their own goal. It’s like clockwork.
The opposition’s set plays always work, but I haven’t noticed corresponding
success when Tech runs inbounds plays. Just another thing the Red Raiders must
improve upon next season.
Poor Screening: Or
poor officiating, you be the judge. Either way, the
Red Raiders were called for probably five moving screens against Missouri. Most
of them were called against guards setting up shop four feet in front of the
hoop attempting to rub off defenders when a Tech big man ran a down cut toward
Bean’s Achilles Heel:
In a previous piece I mentioned that Javarez
Willis is very right-hand dominant and that this trait hampers his offensive
game. Tiger coach Frank Haith apparently noticed this
as well, because whoever guarded Willis shaded him hard to the right and forced
him to go left. The results were not pretty.
Typical Terran: Terran Petteway played 13 minutes, dished two assists and
committed one foul. Those were his only marks in the box score. Sometimes I
think Billie Gillispie puts Petteway in the game when
he simply has no other ideas.
Red Raiders drew an average of 8,700 fans per game in this dreadful season,
which is about 58 percent of capacity. There’s no doubt whatsoever in mind that
a Tech team going .500 in Big 12 play would average 11,000 per game, and a Big
12 title challenger would average 14,000. The potential is there for a truly
special atmosphere. I know—I’ve experienced it before. And
my how I long for those days when Texas Tech was a rocking and raucous
basketball school. Tech is so very far away from that right now.
Crockett Is the
Linchpin: Sophomore Jaye Crockett averaged 11
points and seven rebounds per game in Big 12 play, leading the Red Raiders in
both categories. There’s no reason he can’t be a 15/10 guy next season.