Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Vols beat Tide, offense runs and hide

We had numerous opportunities to win this game, but didn't. We got Tennessee's C game and gave them ours... you're not going to beat a top 10 team playing the way we did.

Box score

Our big men were the only reason we stayed in the game... Green, Mitchell, and Hines played well, but our guard play was atrocious. I'm the biggest Torrance fan on this blog, but even I have to say he was AUful tonight... and of all the games to have a bad one this was the one we could least afford. The upside is we played hellacious D. I saw very few uncontested shots. Saying that, Green, for all he brings to the offensive side, was regularly getting schooled on the defensive end. I counted at least 5 easy baskets scored by UT when defended by Green.

The good:
- defense... 39% FG
- +2 rebound margin
- 8 blocks

The bad:
- guard play... don't think they collectively were 33% from the field
- transition... saw too many easy baskets
- as bad offensively as I've seen us all season
- bad shots. We took plenty of them

This was a game we could've stolen, but didn't. At 1-3 in conference this Saturday's game vs M$U is huge. We almost have to win this one. What started out as promise (road win at LSU) has turned into despair as right now I'm having a hard time piecing together 5 more wins in conference.


Anonymous said...

Our Offense has gone you-know-where in a handbasket.

DJC said...

I was surprised by the pace of the game. Both teams like to press, but neither did so all that much. UT hardly pressed us at all, and we only used it for briefs periods of time. I think UT noticed how badly our offense struggles in the half court. We saw a lot of zone, and still had problems with it. Our bigs did a better job, especially down the stretch of attacking the basket. I was getting frustrated with the number of fade away attempts in the first half.

Conversely, I think Coach Grant realized we probably didn't have the athletes to win in a shoot out with them, so we were content with limiting the number of possessions and playing an ugly game.

I've been hard on Chris Hines, but he really brought it tonight, and Tony Mitchell was spectacular. As I said after the Arkansas game, we are going to have to make a few perimeter shots to get the offense going. We are simply one dimensional right now. 4 for 15 from behind the arc isn't going to cut it, especially 0 for 5 from Brock. The good news is Charvez Davis was 2 for 3, so maybe he's about to heat up again.

We had an early lead but once again our lack of depth did not allow us to sustain it. I was pleased with the effort in coming back from 11 down in the second half. With around 2 minutes left we cut it to 3 and Torrance missed a FT that would have cut the lead to 2. UT got an easy basket at the other end to stretch the lead back to 5, and we never could recover.

We played hard but not always smart. At one point we had cut the deficit to 5 and had momentum, but Hillman forced a bad 3 with nobody under the basket and ut got 3 at the other end. Too many little mistakes added up to cost us the game. We fouled their 3 point shooters 3 times. Defending the perimeter is important, but you can't give them 3 free throws.

A good crowd, albeit late arriving, of around 10,000 or so. It got pretty loud when we were making our run in the 2nd half. The viles brought a good number of folks, but they cheered for their team in a respectful manner.

M$U is now a must win. Sadly, this was probably our last chance to get a "signature" resume win over a top ten team. We still go to Kentucky, but let's keep it real, we aren't beating that bunch in Rupp this year. Following m$u, we have 2 winnable games at auburn and LSU. Psychologically, 2-3 is a lot easier to overcome than 1-4.

resveratrol said...

i tootally agree with you DJC