There is nothing remotely surprising about the outcome of the game. Oh, hell, let’s jump right to Kevin Stallings in the post-game.
Thirty games into his first season at the school, Stallings saw a continuation of what has irked him for much of the past four months, including a lack of execution from a group, he said after the game, which sometimes lacks coachability.
“If the coach says run a play, how about just run the play?” Stallings said. “How about just don’t come down and charge before you give the play a chance to unfold? It’s a lot of things. It’s staying in your stance on defense. It’s staying between your man and the goal. It’s seeing the ball when you’re away from the defense. There are a lot of things that go into it. I get it. I get where they’re at. I get where we’re at in the season. It’s kind of a pride thing at this point. I just had hoped we would play a little better.”
Not that Stallings has been much for taking much responsibility for the way this team plays, other than the usual lip service of “it’s on me as the coach” stuff after blaming the players. But after this game, he didn’t even bother with the pretense.
I mean, I don’t think he’s totally wrong. It is clear that this group didn’t want to listen to him outside of “offensive freedom.” And we all know how thin this team is, making it next to impossible to just bench a guy. But at some point he needed to just yank those players from the game (this one or any of the others where things unfolded all too similarly) rather than lament them (not by name) in the post-game. It’s not like they are listening to him on the court, why would he think they would listen off?
Offense feeds the effort of this team — especially the two primary seniors. When the offense is going, the energy is up. They are at least making an effort on defense. When — as last night — the offense is stuck. In this case because Georgia Tech was very good defensively, you could see the frustration mounting on offense. As that happened, the defensive effort kept slipping as the game got later into the second half.
In the first half, Pitt kept GT outside. They kept the interior — where the Yellow Jackets thrive — clogged. Points happened, but more shots were taken from outside or as jumpers. In the second half, as the offensive frustration mounted, the defense kept getting sloppier. Spreading out further, leaving the paint. Opening up passing lanes, and GT started getting closer, easier shots inside.
Only one more regular season game left, and it sure looks like Pitt will finish sub-.500. There is no way this group will even do the CBI. They just don’t care.