Veteran TU sports journalist Hannah Robbins and Sports Editor Brennen Gray deliver an analysis on how TU sports are doing as a whole.
After riding a high that allowed Tulsa’s men’s basketball team to beat Memphis and Wichita State, which pushed both teams out of the rankings, Tulsa’s men’s basketball team is almost ranked themselves and had a six-game winning streak before losing to UConn on Thursday. After adding a full slate on newcomers, the men have come together, and with a mix of seniors and underclassmen in the mix, cockiness and missed opportunities pushed the team from first in the conference to third. The team still has a chance to get momentum back before the conference tournament, but with Brandon Rachal going out halfway through the game Thursday, the team will be in a very different place than they were last week.
On the other hand, the women’s team has struggled with stamina issues and injuries. The team seems tired; they let shots go uncontested and miss most of the shots they take themselves.
The women’s team simply needs to take some time, get conditioned and get some shot practice in, and they have the ability to go far. The team has had some close losses, but sometimes they just get blown out. They can do better, and I look forward to seeing that side of them in the future.
On the flip side, Tulsa’s football team has the skills they need; they just need some practice. Although they wound up in fifth place in the American West conference, their loss in triple overtime to SMU and single point Homecoming loss shows that the team can be competitive when they’re in the right place.
Hopefully the team continues to figure out what works and cut the streak of three losing record seasons. As long as the team gets a field goal kicker who has put in the practice to hit the field goals when it counts, Tulsa can capitalize on the close losses from the past season.
Another area to pay some attention to in the Softball team. Sports predictions are famously difficult to make, but this year looks to be a good one for the team. Not only has the team retained some of their best players, but they have stayed relatively healthy compared to other teams in recent past. Softball is definitely a team to watch in 2020.
This address would not be complete without touching on the brand new E-Sports lounge on campus. The addition to Tulsa’s array of competitive opportunities includes teams for “League of Legends,” “Rainbow Six,” “Beat Saber,” “Overwatch,” “Magic: The Gathering,” “Counter-Strike: Global Offensive” and “Call of Duty” that will compete with teams from other colleges.
Now is a bit too early to say how good the teams will be, but one interesting facet of esports is the ever-changing aspect of it. New games come out all the time, and just 10 years from now, four or five teams from that list may disband as new games come out. While that may seem like a long time, entire sports teams forming and disbanding that quickly is unheard of compared to the hundred year old traditions of some intercollegiate football and basketball teams.
This is important to recognize because esports may create opportunities for TU to have a nationally competitive team. Logistically, esports is an extremely difficult realm for dynasties; “Overwatch” and “League of Legends” may no longer even be esports in 10 years, let alone have the same couple colleges win every single year.
Of course there are many sports that deserve to be addressed here, but these are the highlights within the natural limitations of covering a topic this expansive. However, one thing that can certainly be said about nearly all Golden Hurricane Athletics as a cohesive whole is that times are tough right now, but the future looks pretty good.