Tortilla Tossin’ Player of the Game: Bryson Williams wasn’t perfect, but he was so good and kept Texas Tech in the game, making 8 of 16 from the floor, 5 boards, 2 assists, a block and a turnover.
Multi-Purpose Player of the Game: Kevin Obanor, Adonis Arms and Kevin McCullar definitely showed up and it’s tough to choose between them. Obanor had himself a double-double, 10 points and 10 boards, along with a block and an assist. McCullar scored 17, on 7 of 13, 3 boards, an assist, a steal, and 2 turnovers. Arms scored 13 on 6 of 12, 7 boards, 7 assists, 2 steals, and 2 turnovers.
- Duke made shots and Texas Tech could not. That’s really how you can beat an excellent defense, is to have a team of guys that are great one-on-one shot-makers and then they end up making those shots and that’s sort of how it unfortunately ends. Duke made 71% of their 2nd half shots, including 50% of 3-point shots and Texas Tech simply could not keep pace. And Texas Tech didn’t even play poorly on offense, making 45% of 1st half shots and 49% of 2nd half shots, they were absolutely normal, or maybe better than normal, but Duke simply could not miss. The Blue Devils missed just 7 shots the entire 2nd half, 17of 24.
- This was likely the final Texas Tech game for Kevin Obanor, Bryson Williams, Adonis Arms, Davion Warren, and Marcus Santos-Silva and possibly the last game for Terrence Shannon, Jr. and Kevin McCullar, depending on their decisions to turn professional. Whatever happens, the unlikeliness of what this team did won’t be forgotten and they did.
- Lots will be written about how Mark Adams took a few returners and a bunch of transfers and took them to the Sweet Sixteen in his first year as head coach. That’s a pretty simple sentence, but all that went into it was pretty special.
- I was frustrated by the foul disparity just like you were, but it was actually fairly even, 12 to 14. The difference was the free throws which were largely in favor of Duke, 17 to just 9. I thought Texas Tech was fouled at times that wasn’t called and I thought Duke hopped on a bunch of shots (like a bunny hop), but whatever. Duke ultimately made shots and Texas Tech did not stop them. That’s what it comes down to, that’s the extent of my complaining about any refs.
- Texas Tech normally dominates points in the paint and the Red Raiders had an advantage, but Duke was right there, 42 to 36 in favor of Texas Tech. Without a significant advantage inside, it was going to be tough to win and Duke is so skilled inside.
- Texas Tech only had 8 turnovers to 12 assist. Normally that’s a winning combination for Texas Tech.
- Thanks to the staff, the coaches, and most importantly the players for a helluva ride. I am very grateful for having had the opportunity to write about and watch this team.
- Advanced stats box score? There were only two net positive players, Arms and Williams last night.
- Head coach Mark Adams: “We just had a team that exceeded all expectations. The credit goes to these guys and our coaching staff for putting together the right guys that would fit here. They wanted to play defense and wanted to play for each other and sacrifice a lot of individual maybe goals for the betterment of the team. I thought it was an unbelievable year. It’s just a team that just reached all kinds of heights no one ever thought was possible.”
- Up next? Recruiting. Transfers. Maybe 5 minutes of rest.