Current Huskies lack unattainable ingredient


Sitting in Hec Edmundson Pavilion watching the Huskies play California on Thursday something became more evident than ever before; this is a team that misses Isaiah Thomas, Venoy Overton, Justin Holiday and Matthew Bryan-Amaning in ways that could never be measured and may never be attained by the present Huskies.

The only way to explain what’s wrong with this years Huskies is that they just aren’t Cold Blooded, and they are far from it.

When each of those four stepped onto the court they brought an energy that made every other player on the team better. Even when they weren’t having the game of their life, they somehow found a way to get the crowd into the game to will them to victories.

Before the four of them the Huskies had Quincy Pondexter, Jon Brockman, Brandon Roy and Nate Robinson.

This season it seems the closest the Huskies have to a fiery, passionate, emotional player, who goes hard on every play is redshirt Freshman Desmond Simmons. Throw in Tony Wroten as well, but at times he appears to take plays off, but that doesn’t take away from the emotion he brings to the game.

The only way to explain what’s wrong with this years Huskies is that they just aren’t Cold Blooded, and they are far from it.

During the first half against California the Huskies came out flat, there was nothing to get excited about on the court what-so-ever. It was like they were playing a road game, but they were in the friendly confines of Alaska Airlines Arena.

The Dawg Pack has taken heat this year for being weak, and up until this point they deserved that criticism, they had been as bad as I’ve ever heard them; but against California, they were back to their ravenous nature, how they should always be.

But it could only last so long, the players didn’t match what the Dawg Pack had to offer and in the first half the Huskies scored a measly 25 points.

The Huskies lack the internal spark needed to play with fire on their own, it’s obvious from the last two games that they need something to trigger their passion to play.

Against Washington State it took Lorenzo Romar getting a technical foul before the Huskies started to play well. Terrence Ross had done nothing before that point and then something clicked, he went on to score 26 second half points in one of the greatest Husky halves in history.

That hot finish was sparked by Romar going ballistic, earning a technical foul and the crowd going crazy and staying crazy for the remainder of the game.

A player who is as highly touted as Ross shouldn’t need a spark, there should be something inside of him that makes him tick, something that wills him to win, the Cold Blooded gene.

Expectations grew thinking that he, along with the rest of the Huskies would bring that fire back against California, that didn’t happen.

The Huskies trailed to start the second half and still came out flat again; until another sparking moment brought the crowd into the game.

The foul call on Ross was one of the worst calls I have seen, Ross had a clean box out, the Cal player went up, and came down over him, Ross didn’t move at all, but foul called, and everything changed.

The Huskies began to play with intensity, especially Ross, who scored 13 of his 15 points in the second half and caught fire with his cross-over jump shot.

It wasn’t enough for the Huskies to come back against California, as Darnell Gant missed his sixth three-point shot of the game as time expired, but it became obvious why the Huskies can’t win games outside of Seattle.

When bad calls occur on the road, the crowd isn’t there to life you up; instead the Huskies are getting down on themselves.

Romar has even said there has been game-days where he could tell his team seemed to lack emotion and energy; that’s a scary scary problem to have.

With no-one stepping up over halfway through the season, it’s becoming more and more clear that this team is going nowhere fast.

Come conference tournament time expectations shouldn’t be high because this team lacks something that previous Romar teams seemed to have.

Those teams had emotion bleeding out of their ears, they were Huskies all the way through and would do anything to win, maybe this team wants to win, but they don’t have the passion to win.

There is something missing from the Huskies this season, it isn’t talent, it’s the same coaching staff, but the Huskies lost four key emotional leaders and apparently brought back none.

Romar can’t be the emotional leader, it’s just not possible, and that’s not the coach’s job.  Until the Huskies figure out they have to put it all on the line, all the time, they won’t be winning many games.

Follow Lawrence on Twitter @AMitchellReport