Against Cornell only Sherron played well; against Tennessee yesterday basically no one played well. Self berated the players after the game, but (granting that he's forgotten more about hoops than I'll ever know) I'd like to point the finger at him for a second.
Self complains that the players aren't sharing the ball, but how about some play-calling? Sure, Xavier needs to be more aggressive, but is it fair to just expect the kid to improvise? Why not run some screens to get him open? I can't believe how much of a non-factor he was in this game, and I don't think it's all his fault.
Also, Self may be the best teacher of defense in college basketball, but sometimes under game pressure he seems to overreact and make bad defensive switches. We almost lost the '08 title game after Self decided to go box-and-one against Chris Douglas-Roberts; this move allowed Derrick Rose to finally get going after he'd been struggling the whole game. Against Tennessee, after a few bad defensive possessions late, Self freaks out and decides to go into a zone for most of the rest of the game -- which, as it always does, yielded opened jumpers for the opponent and got our big men out of rebounding position.
When you have more size, depth and talent than your opponent -- and more importantly, the best man-to-man defense in all of college basketball -- there is never a reason to go zone, other than maybe a possession or two to confuse the opponent or protect a player in foul trouble.
Anyway, that's my rant. I don't think the sky is falling; our boys will pull it together. Here's to a great Big 12 season.