Finding a bright spot in what was otherwise a very dark night for the Heels is a task that’s almost more difficult than convincing the team that you miss 100% more of the shots that you never take. There’s no way to sugarcoat what happened last night: just about every player on the roster played poorly against Georgia Tech, perhaps some moreso than others. However, there was one Tar Heel that at least stepped up and tried to keep this team in the game.
Garrison Brooks had a career night against the Yellow Jackets, as he finished the game with 35 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steal. He made 17 of his 18 free throw attempts, which is a huge improvement over what we’ve seen at times during the season. He also made 9 of his 18 field goal attempts, which may not be great for a big man, but considering how the first half went there’s not a whole lot more you can ask for from him.
Brooks aside, there wasn’t anybody else that I could possibly consider for Player of the Game. The reason Brooks was able to score the most points that have been seen in the Smith Center since Tyler Hansbrough back in 2008 is that he was the only aggressive player for the Heels and took advantage of Georgia Tech not doing enough to shut him down. Every other player on the floor was terrified of shooting the ball for the entire first half, and after showing some ability to take/make shots, the offense completely disappeared when Garrison Brooks fouled out.
There’s no doubt that this team is in big trouble if they can’t dig deep and find some kind of confidence on both offense and defense before Cole Anthony returns. However, it was nice to see Garrison Brooks show some kind of fight for what was otherwise a lifeless Tar Heels team. Let’s just hope that what we saw last night is something we never have to see again in the Roy Williams era.