Texas Recap - II
What to say? Where to start?
Once again I am not sure that I am going to be able to use the proper words to convey anything to you guys to help swing your emotions one way or another. I also doubt that I am going to be able to make you feel any better about the direction of the 2007-2008 Aggie basketball team.
For two straight games the Aggies have simply been terrible. I do not know any other way to put it. They are playing extremely poor basketball on both ends of the court.
When you go back and look at the abysmal 2nd half against OSU and the even worse 1st half against Texas and combine them for 40 minutes of basketball, the Aggies went a combined 12 for 51 (23.5%) and scored a total of 36 points.
In the 1st half alone in Austin on Monday night the Aggies shot a dismal 19.4% from the field on 6-for-31 shooting.
Over the course of the full game, your two senior leaders Dominique Kirk and Joseph Jones combined to go 2-for-14 (14.3%). On the night, each guy individually went 1-for-7.
It was not just on those two guys however. Josh Carter was 3-for-11, Derrick Roland was 2-for-7, and DeAndre Jordan was 3-for-10. Not good.
Is there a more appropriate word than either ‘awful’ or ‘terrible’?
How about the team effort of 1-for-14 from the three point line on the night? 7.1%
SEVEN POINT ONE PERCENT!!!!
What about the group going 11-for-23 from the free-throw line? FREE throws. 47.8%. It has been an issue all year and is clearly not a problem that is going away any time soon. Heck, DeAndre Jordan went 1-for-7 all by himself.
Seems like there were lots of 1-for-7’s buried in the boxscore last night.
Only one Aggie scored more than 8 points (Josh Carter with 11).
Can someone explain to me how the Aggies had 21 offensive rebounds and only 11 second chance points? That means the Aggies had 21 extra opportunities to extend a possession and only came away with 11 points? Ouch.
OK – I’m done throwing out the blinding numbers from Monday night. I think you guys get the point.
The bottom line is that UT came out and buried the Aggies early, and A&M is just simply not good enough to overcome that kind of deficit. A&M actually fell behind by 15 points early on and worked it all the way back to 10 when Kirk made a layup and got fouled to put the score at 13-23.
However, Kirk missed the ensuing free throw, Joe grabbed the offensive board but missed the putback, and before you knew it UT rattled off 10 straight to make it 13-33. The Aggies never got closer than 19 points the rest of the night.
If Joe had made the put-back to make it 15-23, would the outcome of the game have been that far different? I doubt it, but I sure would have liked to see what would have happened if so.
Something about “IF’s and BUT’s?”
Alright - I know a lot of you guys are asking “What does this all mean with regards to getting into the tournament?”
I still think the Aggies are a solid bet to make the field of 65 in a couple of weeks, but they certainly need to be careful over their final 5 games.
The Aggies are currently 6-5 in Big 12 play. Let’s take a look at their remaining schedule.
Opponent Likely Outcome Conference Record
vs. Nebraska Win (7-5)
at Oklahoma 50/50 (8-5 or 7-6)
vs. Tech Win ? (9-5 or 8-6)
at Baylor 50/50 (10-5 or 8-7)
vs. Kansas Loss (10-6 or 8-8)
I think that at 10-6 or 9-7 they will have done enough to get in. Barring a 1st round loss to Colorado or Nebraska in the Big 12 tournament, I think they will be just fine.
If they continue to sputter along here over the next two weeks and wind up 8-8, it may be time to start looking to the NIT.
The other thing you have to factor in is their overall performance in the Big 12 tournament in Kansas City. If they are 10-6/9-7 and win their first game in K.C., they will simply solidify their spot.
If they are 8-8, I think they will need to make the Big 12 Tournament finals in order to get into the big dance.
I just hope they do enough down the stretch to not have their games in K.C. make much of a difference.
OK, hopefully that will give you guys a little better feel for where they stand and a little better idea of the big picture.
To me, the most concerning thing is that mid to late February is when you really want to see your team rounding into shape, starting to click and beginning to fire on all cylinders. It is pretty clear that as we sit here today that this group of guys is a long way away from maximizing their full potential.
Can that change over the next 5 games? Absolutely!
If they take the long week of practice this week, work on what is broken, and somehow rattle off 4 in a row heading into the Kansas game will we all be singing a different song? Absolutely!
My point is that it is not too late to get the ship pointed in the right direction, but man alive they are certainly running out of time quickly. The change needs to be drastic and immediate.
I hope Turgeon had them back in the gym at 6:00 am on Tuesday morning working on their high-ball-screen defense. Their rotations and their lack of help defense against both OSU and Texas were about as bad as you will ever see.
We will try to have a SureToBeWrongScorePrediction out to you guys on Friday before the Aggies’ game against Nebraska.
I am sorry for the negative tone of this note. I try to pump as much sunshine as I can, but it is awfully tough right now with the way this team is playing.
I would also be remiss if I did not give Jerry Bluhm a little credit for sending the best text message of the night. It simply read, “Is this the WNBA?”
Hope everyone has a great week.