In personal warmth, Texas Longhorns men's basketball coach Shaka Smart won't ever be confused for Alabama Crimson head football coach Nick Saban, but both are intensely focused on the process instead of the results.
Through two games, the Horns still clearly have a long way to go in working the process to get the desired results, but there has already been some improvement.
"I think the biggest thing is our focus has to be on following our plan," said Smart. "We got much better with that from our first game to our second game in terms of carrying over what we talked about doing. There's such a focus -- and I know it's obviously a huge part of your job -- on the results and our guys want the results. I want the results."
With three freshmen contributing and Smart still trying to install his system and his belief structure, he's understandably worried about the team mixing up the results with the process. If that happens, it can be hard to get things back on track.
"Sometimes the emphasis on the results can obscure the process and that makes it challenging for young guys because if you don't follow the process, that is one guarantee you're not going to get the results. The process is not pretty, it's not sexy, it's not something that's out in front of everyone to brag about, but it is something that works. It's something that if our guys continue to own and own more and more, we're going to have a lot of success."
One of the players who needs to focus on the process out of necessity is freshman wing Tevin Mack, who has been struggling from the field in missing his first 16 shots. So the staff is trying to encourage him to remain confident and continue trying to get the best shots he can.
With Smart's focus on empowering his players to be confident on the court, shot selection can suffer, as it has for Mack at times. The Texas head coach has four categories for shots -- great shots, good shots, decent shots, and bad shots -- and the Horns improved from the first game to the second game, but still need to improve significantly in that area.
Smart also said that junior guard Kendal Yancy will make the trip, but may not be able to play due to the concussion that he suffered last weekend against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.