Date: Sunday, November 30th
Time: 1:00 pm
Good Guys: Texas Tech Red Raiders
Bad Guys: Air Force Falcons
Location: United Supermarkets Arena | Lubbock, TX
TV/Stream: FSSW / FCS Central
Radio/Stream: Broadcast Affiliates and TuneIn App
More in Double Figures. Up until the Northwestern State game, the only player in double-figures was freshman F Norense Odiase, and after the game, Texas Tech has a few more that have entered the realm of double-figures in PG Robert Turner and SG DeVaughntah Williams. Ruter is averaging 10.5 points a game, but he's struggle a bit from the floor, shooting 37.5%, missing what seems like a lot of layups and short shots that come up a bit short. Those shots are usually drives to the basket and off the board and they're just falling the wrong way at this time. Still, Turner needs to improve on that shooting percentage moving forward and I think he will.
Williams has shot his way to second on the team in scoring as he now averages 11.5 points this early in the season and he's been simply amazing from beyond the three-point line, shooting an astounding 79%. Yeah, he's been on fire and he's a true weapon as he's got a terrific release and really nice elevation on that jumpshot, which makes it that much more difficult to defend. If Williams is even remotely close to 45% from beyond the arc, as 79% isn't sustainable, then he could really be the long-lost consistent outside threat that Texas Tech has lacked for years.
One other footnote is that F Justin Jamison finally had his first action of the year, playing just 6 minutes against Northwestern State. It will be interesting to watch his minutes, especially with Isaiah Manderson playing most of the back-up center minutes. Not sure if Jamison will play mostly at center or at power forward, but he seems like he could be a good high-post option to spell Zach Smith.
Three Keys to the Game:
1. Scouting the Falcons. Max Yon (6-4/198) is the leading scorer and shooting guard for the Falcons. Yon is a ridiculously good shooter, shooting 53% from teh field and 48% from the three point line. And that's the thing that Air Force does really well, which is shoot the ball from beyond the arc, as the Falcons have already shot 97 three-point attepts and made 43 on the year. Texas Tech is very much going to have to guard the three-point line. SF Kamryn Williams (6-5/197) is the only other Falcon in double-figures, as he averages 10.5 points a game on 70% from the field and 50% from the three-point line and he also is the leading rebounder at 5 boards a game. Inside, Air Force doesn't score a lot, but Marek Olesinski (6-9/220) man's the middle, grabbing 5 boards a game and scoring about 6 points a contest.
2. Inside Advantage. Statistically, Texas Tech should have the rebounding and free throw advantage against Air Force, but they're terrific shooting the ball. The thing though is that if you can stop the Falcons from beyond the arc, then they're pretty human offensively. The Falcons only rank 206th in Adj.O, compared to 119th that Texas Tech is in terms of offense. So, despite the great shooting, there's still a ton of holes for the Falcons. And defensively, Texas Tech should have another significant advantage as they are 244th in Adj.D. which means that the Texas Tech offense should really have a field day.
3. Two In a Row. It's almost always going to be the guards that are key to the game and this game is no different. Randy Onwuasor and Justin Gray need to have really terrific games defensively and they each need to build on their best games of the year against Northwestern State. This is a maturation process for these players, even though Onwuasor played quite a bit last year, it's good to see these guys continue to improve with each passing game.