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Texas Tech Hoops | VTM Staff Weekly Roundtable

Different thoughts and opinions from the VTM staff members on certain questions and topics for the Red Raiders basketball team. This week we discuss the team's strengths and weaknesses.

Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

In 9 games so far Texas Tech had the opportunity to play lower and higher competition. We are 6-3, losing to only the higher competition. What seems to be our biggest strengths? What seems to be our biggest weaknesses? How do we improve?

Seth C - I think this team's biggest strength is their ability to play unselfishly. They really do appear to be a bunch of guys that are hungry for wins and don't have much of an ego. There's not one guy that's shooting a ton, they really do appear to be a team that wants to work together and that's fun to watch. The team's biggest weakness is how this team just have a bunch of shot-makers. That's what makes great players great, their ability to create and make shots and Texas Tech really doesn't have that guy that can bail them out of an offensive slump. Having that type of player takes time and hopefully the teamwork aspect can help.

As far as improving, I think the more this team plays, the more cohesive they'll be. They played a bunch of games in a few days, especially with the Brooklyn tournament. I think having some time away for finals will do this group some good. The fact that they do appear so hard working is really something that I enjoy watching. It's not easy, but they really don't get down and I know they're giving it their best.

SARR - I agree with your 5 things post in that the outside shooting needs improvement but the defense (particularly steals and causing turnovers) has been great, and I rally enjoy seeing the team make its free throws.

Improve? I think they just need to continue to try and get Hannah's open looks. Shooters will go through slumps and he just has to shoot his way out of it. Again, it goes back to your point, take the green light and run with it.

LSRR - I would say that our biggest strength would be coaching. No matter the score of the game, our guys keep playing. Inconsistencies in outside shooting would be one our biggest weaknesses. It was very noticeable when Turner had a bit of a slump in back-to-back games. Improving as a team is something I don't worry too much about with Coach Smith at the helm, but getting more minutes for the bench guys (particularly Gotcher) might take some pressure off of Hannahs and Turner in the long run.

MikeTTU - Our best strength so far seems to be the pressure we put on perimeter defense. Team often have a hard time generating a descant shot behind or close to the 3-point line weather Gotcher, Onwuasor and Turner are guarding man or in the zone. A majority of our defensive plays and fast beak points happens when one of those 3 deflects or steals the ball. The main way the opposition could score points to kicking it to the interior or causing a double team in the paint. That being said, the main weakness for Texas Tech is a reoccurring issue from last season; defensive rebounding and quick turnovers. Countless times does the opposition seem to get rebounds after a missed shot and put it back in for points, or Tech makes a lazy or non communicative pass that ends up in easy points for the opponent. It kills momentum and really gives optimism to the other team. The best way to help this cause is for Texas Tech is practice boxing out on defense, which will help for the weaker Tech big men. Also, to help turnovers, players should watch for jumping defenders and don't try to force passes that aren't or barley there.

DanSwany -As I have written before; I think that our defense is much improved from previous years. It seems to be our biggest strength. Not that we are a defensive beast as a team together right now, but we do run the defense very disciplined. It will continue to get better as we play more games. That and our never quite attitude is a huge positive for the team.

We have more noticeable weaknesses than strengths, but they should diminish as the season rolls along. I, of course, am worried about our three-point shooting ability in the backcourt. But, I am also worried about our depth in the frontcourt. When Jordan Tolbert and Jaye Crockett are out of the game we tend to get killed inside. The opponents find our weakness and attack. And, without the guards being a threat from downtown it limits offensively a lot we can do with the ball in our hands.

The way to improve is practice and gameplay. I think as we keep moving forward in the season we will continue to grow and develop as a team. Improvements will happen over time; hopefully we pull it all together as Big 12 play opens up.