Post Game Thoughts | Texas Tech Red Raiders 71, UTEP Miners 82

Box Score | Post Game Quotes

THE RESULT | PRETTY MUCH THE SAME THING | This is a bit of a reduction, but we've seen this movie before. First, John Roberson and Mike Singletary did not start. It's probably not accurate to say that they were benched, which implies to me that they didn't play at all. By the end of the game, they both saw 28 minutes, so although they didn't start, they played. I honestly don't know what the message is from Pat Knight by not starting the two seniors. The announcers said that he wanted more leadership from them and I don't understand how by not starting the two of them, but playing them about the same amount of time makes any difference.

So what we have here is PK not starting his two best players and he's also effectively benched his freshmen class after giving them some time early in the season. I don't know what else he's going to do to this team other than play out the season.

It's quite clear that this team is under-performing and I truthfully believe that PK isn't sure why. The defense continues to be bad as UTEP shot 45.5% from the field and eFG% of 52.5%. And at this point, it's a collective defensive effort. It's guys missing assignments and help defenders not rotating properly or at all.

And to address the idea of replacing PK in the middle of the year of the year, I don't think that happens. That's not to say that I think the sooner the better, but logistically, if PK were terminated (it would probably be done without notice) then the new head coach must assemble a staff, implement the offense and defense during the toughest stretch of the year, which is conference play. I don't recall a situation where the coach is terminated and a completely new staff comes in during the middle of the year. The normal route is to retain an assistant coach as the interim head coach and then make the hire immediately after the season. Yes, this means that we have two more months of less than stellar basketball to watch, but I just don't that's going to happen. I'd also add that by hiring a coach after the season, you give the perception to fans that the program is changing directions and to have some hope for the new year. If the new head coach comes in and flounders in the middle of the season, fans are going to be even less than patient than they already are.

Head Coach Pat Knight

I thought we played well in the first half. We shot .500 from the field and made seven of our eight free throw attempts. In the second half, we missed a lay-up at the start and they came down the court and made two three-pointers with just over a minute off the clock. We would mount a comeback and they were able to hold the lead. I think we brought their lead down to five points on three or four occasions and they managed to extend the lead back to eight or nine points. Then near the end of the game, we had to foul and they made some free throws.

MVP | PF D`walyn Roberts Roberts is starting to look like he's almost 100% completely healthy (10 Pts; 5-12 FG; 7 Reb; 2 Ast; 2 Stl; 2 Blk; 0 TO). He does play tough defense and it seems that he's continually scrambling to make something happen.

Analysis after the jump.


 

POST GAME THOUGHTS

GUARDS

Starting was PG Mike Davis and SG David Tairu they were okay. Tairu's minutes have been significantly cut for whatever reason. I don't think he's that bad of a player, but he's become a non-factor at this point of the season and he went 0-4 last night. Davis is a good hustle-player, but I don't know that he ever aveages 10 points a game for Texas Tech. He's a liability on offense, but that's not why he's out there. I just can't figure out Roberson (10 Pts; 4-12 FG; 5 Ast; 2 TO) in that for the year, he's averaging 13 points a game this year but he's shooting the same percentage that he did when he was a sophomore. Last year, Roberson shot 42% and you would think that this would improve as a senior, but whether it's just part of his shot selection or that he's always going to just make somewhere close to 40% of his shots isn't helping this team. PG Javarez Willis had 12 minutes, but they were fairly invisible minutes. I hardly noticed him on the floor.

FORWARDS

As mentioned above, maybe the best part of the game is that Roberts looks completely healthy. He's going after loose balls and for him to get 7 boards is a move in the right direction. And yes, I'm struggling to find silver-linings at this point. SF Brad Reese is going to have a good line (16 Pts; 6-14 FG; 6 Reb; 2 Ast; 2 TO) but in my opinion, he sometimes struggles with his shot selection and althoug PK has confidence in Reese's game as a 6-6 small forward that doesn't use his length enough to get easy baskets, he's still shooting 43.2% for the year. SF Mike Singletary probably had one of his better games, but he was non-existant in the first half, but actually stayed inside and shoot the ball within 10 feet of the goal or get to the line (17 Pts; 5-9 FG; 6 Reb; 2 Ast; 3 TO). PF Robert Lewandowski was instrumental in keeping Texas Tech in the game in the first half, hitting a variety of post-moves and hook-shots, scoring 8 points. The problem is that he only finished with 9 points for the game (9 Pts; 4-7 FG; 7 Reb). For the second straight game, I've noticed that Lew is tugging at his shirt to get out of the game because he's gassed. Am I crazy to think that he shouldn't be so tired playing all 31 minutes in a game. I'd like to look at his 1st half and 2nd half splits, but he needs to be a bigger factor for this team. PF Paul Cooper continues to get a little time subbing in for Lew. Like the rest of the team, he's late on defensive rotations. SF Jaye Crockett got 2 minutes of playing time and sat the bench the rest of the way. While in the game, I think he was guarding Julyan Stone and Stone promptly had two transition 3-point plays while Crockett was guarding him. I don't blame PK for benching Crockett for not getting back on defense, but PK shouldn't be so unforgiving when the entire team struggles defensively.

COACHING

The defense continues to be bad, and if there's one thing that I thought when PK was hired as the head coach, that this team would be a relentless defensive team. PK didn't emphasize it in his first full season and it seems as if that's been the case for his entire tenure. As mentioned above, I'm not sure if PK has a real idea as to where to turn next. He just might be out of tricks as there's really no one else to bench or blame. PK has usually always taken the blame when the situation is warranted and I think he's been pretty truthful about his assessment prior to the year, but this just isn't making any sense on so many levels.


FOUR FACTORS

 

Fancy basketball glossary found here.


PLAYER IMPACT

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