I am a reading a new book called “Know-it-All,” which is about a man’s attempt to read the entire Encyclopedia Brittanica in order to become the smartest man in the world. I find this a very impressive goal and one that I would love to accomplish if I had the time or willpower. While I can never complete his journey, the book itself provides a number of facts that I find have real world applicability.
For instance, the life of Rene Descartes. This famous philosopher came to a realization concerning human existence based upon the fact that he had a fetish for women who were cross-eyed. In fact, he found that the only women he truly found attractive were cross-eyed and it was hindering his ability to find a wife. Thus he looked into his past and determined that the reason he had this fetish was due to the existence of a cross-eyed playmate when he was younger. By confronting the origin of his “problem” (and I am in no way saying it was a problem but just letting folks know what Descartes thought), he decided he could then confront it. In fact, he came to the realization that now that he knew why he had a fetish for cross-eyed women, he could actually get over it and completely overcome it. And this he did, finding a wife with straight eyes and living happily ever after.
So what does this have to do with Tubby Smith? Well I think the Coach should take a lesson from Rene and recognize that there is a problem with this team this season. Some may think that this problem is recruiting (I disagree), but no matter, that is not something that can be fixed in the next three months. Rather, I think this team requires a change in his philosophy. Specifically, he needs to alter how he constructs an offense, as “Tubby Ball” requires something this team just does not have, mainly smart, physical post players who are good passers and are scoring threats.
Thus Tubby must recognize the problem and then overcome it by making what may become a temporary change to his style. This team MUST increase the tempo and use more of a “spread” offense, with the big men moved out of the lane, where they are doing nothing but clogging up the action, and Rondo/Bradley’s dribble penetration abilities showcased. This team is unlike any of Tubby’s ever at Kentucky as the strength lies solely with the guards and Tubby must showcase that strength by adjusting to these realities.
The end of Rene Descartes life was mostly positive as he continued a philosphical and mathematics career that has rarely been matched in human history. I am not expecting this Kentucky team to come up with the basketball equivalent of cognito ergo sum, but it can at least get back on track…but only if Tubby chooses to address his cross-eyed fetish.