Texas Tech 82, Texas 74
* The Flex is a shout-out to Tubby Smith’s flex offense and a place for us to set some screens, make some cuts and discuss the game. I am also writing this during the game, so it is in chronological order for the most part.
- This wasn’t a fluke. Not by a longshot. Texas Tech was simply the better team today. Yeah, it was close, and probably closer than it should have been, but Texas Tech was significantly better. The better team. Isaiah Taylor was the best player on the court, but up and down the roster, Texas Tech was simply better today. Texas Tech is now 11-1 on the year and beat a decent Texas team. There’s really no time to celebrate as Texas Tech has to play Iowa State on Wednesday. This is not your team of old. I don’t know what’s going to happen moving forward, but I think you can bet this team will be competitive through the Big 12.
- Texas Tech jumped out to an early lead against Texas and the Longhorns simply had a hard time getting going. It’s pretty clear that the Texas offense is pretty dependent on Cameron Ridley in the middle, but they really do struggle to do much of anything inside. I think a large part of this equation is the Texas Tech defense.
- Speaking of that Texas offense, in the first half, the Longhorns shot 29% from the field and actually shot better from the three-point line, 31%. Again, I think there’s something to be said about the Texas Tech defense, that forced 8 turnovers on Texas.
- Texas Tech was led by Devaugntah Williams in the first half who had 11 points and again exhibited his ability to score rather than just shoot the ball from the outside. Texas Tech also had almost no production from Toddrick Gotcher and Keenan Evans in th first half as they were virtually shut out. Gotcher had two free throws, but that was about it.
- Texas Tech made 12 of 13 free throws in the first half.
- Texas Tech is really ramping up the screen-and-roll offense and it worked to the point where Texas moved to a zone defense. This was to control the screen-and-roll that was so effective for Texas Tech, but also because the Longhorns were fouling at a high rate.
- Texas made a run late in the first half and I think it was because Texas Tech really didn’t have a big-man on offense that could really dominate the block or at least create some attention. Aaron Ross and Zach Smith were both in the game and neither one were really calling for the ball.
- A huge part of the first half was the play of Norense Odiase dominating inside. He had a few turnovers that were troubling, but no one could really guard Odiase in the first half.
- In the second half, Texas moved back to a zone defense and the Texas Tech offense struggled to get moving. With the Longhorns packing it in and Odiase unable to be on the floor constantly, Texas Tech’s offense came to a lull. The fact that the hand-check fouls were called on Texas Tech, seemingly every possession made this game tough to watch
- Toddrick Gotcher’s second half resurgence was a huge factor in Texas Tech holding on to get the win. Gotcher (I think) had 2 points in the first half and was on fire in teh second half, scoring 18 points overall and made 4 of 6 three-point shots to seal the win.
- The sequence with about a minute and a half left had Williams block a shot and then he sprints down the court for a layup to put Texas Tech up 74-63.
- Free throws were huge for Texas Tech. The Red Raiders made 27 of 30 free throws and Williams made 13 of 13 from the line.
- Someone explain to me the physics of how Zach Smith blocked a the Felix three-point shot.
- Odiase, Smith, Williams and Gotcher all scored in double-figures while Evans only made 2 points, he also had 3 assists and didn’t turn the ball over. Odiase had 13 points and 7 rebounds. Smith had 10 points, 4 rebounds and 3 blocks. Williams missed all of his three-point shots, but he still finished with 23 points, 3 rebounds, 3 steals and a block. And we’ve already talked about Gotcher. I should also mention that Ross had 9 points on the day, including a get-off-your-couch three-point basket in the first half.