La vertigine non è
paura di cadere
ma voglia di volare
(Vertigo is not
being afraid of falling,
but a desire to fly)
- Italian singer -
What’s going on? It was a super Saturday to be a Raider fan, as what it was supposed to be a quiet set of games quickly transformed in a possibility that had to be caught. It all started in Morgantown, where West Virginia lost to Oklahoma State after a tight game, and this was unexpected at all because the Cowboys lost four of their five last games and the Mountaineers defeated Oklahoma in the Monday showcase.
After this first upset, the unthinkable happened, as the Sooners trailed for the most part of the game against the Cyclones and lost by eight (third consecutive L), while Kansas suffered a 16-point debacle in Waco from a Baylor team that seems red-hot and that will be Texas Tech’s opponent next Saturday.
At this point, the Red Raiders knew all these results and had the possibility, with a victory, to gain the solitary lead in the Big 12. I don’t know if it ever happened at this point of a season, but it was something historical, a train that doesn’t appear too often on the horizon.
The answer was worthy of a top team, as Texas Tech answered to a trembling first half with a dominant second part of the game in which Kansas State only scored 20 points.
And we cannot forget that on Wednesday the Red Raiders wrecked Iowa State by 18 points, the same margin by which the Cyclones won the game in Ames some weeks ago. Moreover, last but not least, it’s interesting to note these two last victories came with collective efforts, as the best scorer of the week was Keenan Evans, who averaged 17 points per game.
Waiting for this week’s challenges against Oklahoma and Baylor (and I’m not sure the Sooners are the hardest one, as we’ll play in Waco), we can preview the rankings, that will probably gift to Texas Tech its highest position ever. In my opinion, the Red Raiders will jump to No. 5 or 6 because:
- despite losing one game each, Villanova and Virginia only have two losses and will remain behind, maybe with Michigan State overcoming them for the first position;
- with two losses in a week, Purdue will see its ambitions dropping, and that’s the team the Red Raiders will undermine;
- the other possibility to climb a position, as Xavier won both its games and had some margin, is Cincinnati losing to SMU, a 15-9 team that’s missing continuity to be dangerous.
Let’s close this Sunday column with a baseball update, as on Friday at 2 p.m. the team led by Tim Tadlock will start its season against Maine. There are a lot of expectations around them and I see many similarities with the basketball guys that are giving us many satisfactions. let’s support them, they deserve it!