Saturday, January 10, 2009

Dawgs lose by 9 to UT.

I'm disappointed in the loss. Really disappointed because a win over the #15 team in the nation would have meant so much. And we all but had it. Not satisfied with "almost," but neither can I deny the fact that our level of basketball is much, much better.

Bottom line? We missed lots of free throws. That's the biggest issue. When we really needed them, we didn't sink'em. We shot over 70% for the game. That's a mark of a good team. But the mark of a top 20 team is converting from the charity stripe with the game on the line. We didn't do that, and until we do, we won't be an elite SEC team, beating teams like #15 UT.

Swansey missed a couple of jumpers that were about in the basket before coming back out. He played much better, though, and so did Dustin Ware. Somehow we've got to get Zac to shoot better than 37%, and he needs to be automatic from the line.

3 Key plays, the first one was the difference to the game:

Tyler Smith misses a free throw, we box out, jump to get it, but it hangs up on the rim and then falls off. They get the offensive rebound and pass it out to Tatum for a three.

Leslie misses a free throw, they get the rebound, push it up the floor and score.

We turn the ball over on the in-bounds lob to Price, they get the run-out and score.

Need of the hour?A 2-guard who can slash the ball to the rim and shoot jumpshots.

If Ebuka can play, then you don't try to preserve his redshirt. If he's recovered from the off-season surgery, then play him during the SEC stretch. If Anyaorah cannot go, then I guess Travis Leslie will have to be the guy.

But UT drove the ball to the hoop late in the game and converted, and we tried jumpshots that didn't work.

I am more patient than most, and I am enjoying seeing the kids get better. Let's get some victories in the SEC.

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