Head Coach Pat Knight
On Tech's turnovers:
"I was upset we didn't play with passion until the second half, and we can't play like that. That was the hardest team we have played. They were everywhere, and we have to show up and play with some heart and some passion. We get out there and expect teams to roll over for us. Our guys need to grow up a little bit and go out and be ready to play from the beginning instead of waiting until the second half."
On four guys having double figures:
"I plan on that for the rest of the year and at any given moment we could have seven guys in double figures. This is the deepest we have been in a long time and that works best for our offense. We have a lot of different ways we can score and that's good because in the past we have pretty much had to rely on John (Roberson) and Mike (Singletary) to score and now they have some guys that can help."
MVP | SG David Tairu Was really quiet for a good part of the first half, but Tairu continues to take the ball inside and not just settle for outside jumpers. Tairu's 15 points led the team, made 6 of 10 shots and continues to play pretty darned good man-on-man defense.
I thought the post game thoughts table looked awful on narrow view on the front page, so it's after the jump.
POST GAME THOUGHTS
It seems as if this team will live and die by the outside jumpshot of PG John Roberson, who was 0 for 5 from the field in the first half, had 2 turnovers and 0 assists. I wish this team didn't have to completely rely on Roberson's talent in order to beat lesser opponents, but maybe that's the case. You take away Roberson's 5 misses and this team is shooting 42% from the field rather than 34% from the field. But in the second half, Roberson came alive, hitting 5 of 8 from the field, including 4 3-pointers that helped give the Red Raiders a good cushion in the second half. I mentioned Tairu already above and sometimes I think it's a bit disappointing that this teams best battler inside is a 6-3 shooting guard. Tairu probably gets his shot blocked at least twice a game, but he doesn't give up and he keeps taking the ball inside. Combo-guard Mike Davis actually showed up on the offensive end of the floor and he essentially kept the team in the game in the 1st half. Davis still doesn't have confidence in his outside shot, but he plays tough man defense. Javarez Willis had a relatively quiet day, only took a couple of shots, had a couple of assists and only 1 turnover. Willis has been too quiet the past few games. I wouldn't mind seeing him be a little more aggressive, but I also get that he's not pushing, which isn't easy to hold back as a true freshman.
Both SF Brad Reese and PF Robert Lewandowski have strung together two straight positive games. Reese (6-11 FG; 2-3 3FG; 14 PTS; 6 RB; 3 TO) is starting to look better from the outside. And Reese just didn't settle for outside shots, and took advantage of his length inside game offensively. He still doesn't do much defensively, but he's not awful. Lewandowski (6-7 FG; 13 PTS; 7 RB; 3 AST; 1 STL; 2 BLK; 1 TO) had a full stat-line and for Lew to put together two solid games is a step in the right direction. SF Mike Singletary only had 9 points, but he also had 8 assists, which seems like a typo as I didn't think he had that many assists or had the ball in his hand to dish out that many. Either way, Singletary didn't take over offensively, which is what I'd like for him to do, against a team that he should be able to take inside . . . especially at home. But Singletary did have this assist (please watch this as you will instantly love Jaye Crockett). And speaking of Jaye Crockett, he's raw offensively, and as you can see from the video, he's incredibly gifted. And I actually think that head coach Pat Knight wants to play Crockett more, but Crockett needs to help himself. Crockett has a habit of fouling too much. He had 3 fouls in only 8 minutes on Friday and he had 3 fouls in only 14 minutes yesterday. Crockett must do a better job of staying on the ground and guys with that sort of athleticism tend to want to jump at every ball-fake and he needs to realize that he's not going to block every shot, but he's more important being on the floor playing solid defense.
As Texas Tech was running off the floor for halftime, if Pat Knight had a lighter, he would have literally lit a fire under every player's rear. Not only that, Roberson was the last player jogging into the locker room and shoved/pushed Roberson forward. Obviously, there are issues, including this team playing lackluster defense in the first half, and Roberson just not getting anyone or anything involved offensively. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, right now, PK has a 4-man bench without getting anything from PF D`walyn Roberts who is still having back issues and PF Paul Cooper still recuperating from surgery. The rebounding may be an issue until those guys get healthy.
If this team can just figure out how to solve the rebounding issue, in particular the offensive rebounding issue, then this team would win by 20 points a game against lesser opponents.