Disappointing is how I feel about this game. Completely within the realm of being able to win, but just can't close it out. Here's the review:
|Trevor Cook||Never got on track despite playing 32 minutes. Needs to be more productive on the floor, only 2 points and 1 board.|
|Damir Suljagic||What happened to the low post moves? Seemed a little intimidated of Longar's inside presence.|
|Martin Zeno||Didn't shoot too bad, but would have been more useful going to the basket and getting more fouls on the Sooners. Only 4 free throws.|
|John Roberson||No longer intimidated by hostile crowds. 14 points, 7 boards 5 assists and only 2 TO's.|
|Charlie Burgess||Minimal minutes.|
|Alan Voskuil||Shoot the damn ball. Could have been a great asset in the 1st half had he shot the ball. I just don't get it.|
|Mike Singletary||Not completely polished, but he's not afraid to go inside and is an effective scorer. Most importantly, he looks to score, see frustration above.|
|Esmir Rizvic||Thought he had quality minutes against Longar, but nothing shows up in the boxscore. I like his passion and has basketball smarts.|
What Texas Tech Did Right:
- Defensive Intensity: This team is really good defensively and they consistently hold opponents where if the offense could ever get going, they'd be fine. OU did shoot better in the 2nd half, but there was no way they were going to make only 9 buckets like they did in the 1st half, so the fact that the defense did allow OU to shoot 45% isn't a great concern (biggest problem was the 9 offensive rebounds in the 2nd half for OU). The only issue that concerns me is the short bench that Knight has used in the last two games and I can envision a time where Zeno, Roberson and Voskuil could get pretty tired by season's end if Burgess or Craig can get a few effective minutes.
- Making Freethrows: I'm reaching for compliments here, but the Red Raiders did shoot over 87% in the 2nd half. Perhaps the worry of not making free throws has run its course and that won't be a reason why we lose a game.
- Guards are the Stars: The guard play has been outstanding for two straight games, especially the play of Roberson. I know that some blame may be placed at the feet of Roberson for the final result, but the fact that he had 14 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists and only 2 turnovers means that he's really rounding out his game. He's definitely getting better. Some of the same things can be said about Voskuil in that he's contributing more than just points, although I think we'd like to see him take more shots, he also had 6 rebounds to go with his 14 points.
What Texas Tech Did Wrong:
- Rebounds: It's a recurring theme here at DTN for me to be upset at the lack of rebounding that big men exhibit. Just like last year, I cannot understand how Cook, who is a much better athlete than Dora or Plefka, can only manage 1 rebound in 32 minutes. Even Roberson, who barely reaches 5-11, gets 7 rebounds. Someone is going to have to grab 6 to 9 rebounds a game, even if it's a collective effort.
- Offensive Purpose: It seems to me that too many times there seems to be a lack of offensive purpose. I understand that part of the purpose of the motion offense is to eventually create an open shot, but I think that at times there needs to be some sort of offensive purpose with this group. Whether it be trying to create an opportunity for Zeno to go baseline when we need a bucket. Create an open jumper for Voskuil beyond the arc. Isolate Cook or Suljagic on the wing so that they might be able to take advantage of a lower defender. I think that one player can take it upon himself to be the hero and take the shot, but if there was a collective effort to do so then I think the 2nd half scoring woes don't happen.
- Shoot the Damn Ball: I'm to the point that I'm tired of saying this, but I'm tired of watching Voskuil not show up for long stretches of the game. It is at times unbearable to watch him play for long parts of the game and defer, defer and defer. It's maddening for me to watch, I can't imagine being his teammate and you think you've gotten him the ball where he can do something with it, but he chooses not to do so. I think I've gone on the record enough to say that I think that Voskuil is one of the better shooters I've seen play at Texas Tech, but he's got to be a bigger part of the offense.
Up Next: Missouri @ Texas Tech, January 23, 2008 at 7:00 p.m. (Television - ESPN Plus).