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Texas Tech Sunday Morning Notes - Giving The Effort Edition

Double-T Nation News:

Thanks to all of you who emailed me yesterday about the first African-American football player for Texas Tech. For those of you who don't know, it was Danny Hardaway, who was also Texas Tech's first African-American basketball player too. I'll try and write something about Mr. Hardaway in the very near future. I also understand that Mr. Hardaway is still very much involved in Texas Tech athletics. For those of you who want to avoid reading about Texas Tech's loss to OU yesterday, then take a look at "Racial Integration of College Football in Texas" from Richard Pennington. It's a long article, but certainly worth your consideration.

I know that there's a ton of baseball coverage out there, but I thought that I'd focus on yesterday's basketball game and then detail the baseball coverage in a separate post.

Texas Tech Basketball:

LAJ's Jeff Walker, DMN's Brandon George and FWST's Dwain Price each have articles on yesterday's loss to OU, but it's this quote that stands out from each of their articles from PK:

"The bottom line with our team is we had the effort, but we don't have the smarts," said Knight, who paid tribute to the Tech football team by walking out before the game wearing a Red Raiders' football jersey. "We just made too many dumb plays at crucial times, be it losing the ball, missed block outs, leaving guys when you're told not to leave guys. And it always happens at crucial times when you're trying to make a run. This team is giving the effort. They're just not playing smart basketball at times."

I think PK sees what we all see. We can all expect to see much more zone defense from opposing defense for the rest of the year as well as a half-ass press defense, which I think it's only intent was to take time off of the shot clock (and Capel was smart to do so). It's incredibly frustrating to watch this team struggle so mightily against the zone. I'm sure that part of it is that Voskuil needs to be more willing to shoot the outside shot, but for me, when the interior defenders can essentially ignore anyone inside players, then playing the zone just got that much easier.

So what does all of this mean? I'm glad that PK is getting the opportunity now, when I didn't think that this team had much of a chance to get to the Tournament, to figure out some of these things. It could also help in making a determination on who he wants to recruit and how me molds his team. I agree with Royals Review in that although yesterday's loss is hard to take, it isn't the end of the world. I haven't thought that this team was a NCAA Tournament team for quite some time and I personally see it to be more valuable for PK to figure out how to handle losses like yesterday's and wins like on Wednesday now rather than next year, when my expectations will change for this team.

I'm pretty sure I said some time ago that I wasn't going to get down on this team. The core of this team is young and with inexperienced players you are going to see uneven and incomplete games. You don't necessarily like to look ahead, but I do think that this program is headed in a positive direction. I trust PK and yesterday's loss, although tough, doesn't bother me as much as it will next year.