No Quick Fix

Louisiana Tech Head Basketball Coach Mike White has a plan and he isn't willing to take any shortcuts. He knows if he sticks to his plan and puts in the work, everything will come together soon enough. Coach White recently sat down and talked with

Mike White knows what he is looking for when he searches for players to add to his roster this year and in future years. He isn't willing to compromise those values to try and take a shortcut to success.

"Are we going to go out and sign a junior college All-American or a transfer with just one or two years left," asked White. "We're going to evaluate those situations of course, but that's not us. The main goal is not to win win as many games as we can next year, it's to build this program."

With the addition of Isaac Brown from Arkansas State, Coach White put together a staff with solid credentials. Brown has an impressive resume and May has already shown his recruiting skills in his two years in Ruston. Jones, who came to Tech from UNO last year, has already started making an impression on the local high school coaches.

"I wanted three guys on the staff with deep roots in the South," said Coach White. "All three guys have roots in the South. Some have deeper roots than others, but I think collectively we can hit all the major areas. Derrick (Jones) is fantastic. He's a relentless worker. He's going to be valuable to our efforts just like Dusty (May) and Isaac (Brown). As a staff, you have to work together as a team and you have to have an open line of communication. You have to be unselfish and honest. I fell like I have three guys who will be out on the road that are young, energetic, that are team guys, and that will work well together."

Louisiana Tech is going to play fast and Coach White wants to be clear they are going to back up what they are preaching.

"Kids are receptive to an up tempo style," stated the former Ole Miss point guard. "Most coaches will talk about playing up tempo. We'll show you on paper. We'll show you box scores. We'll show you season stats. We'll show you the increases we have in shots per game and shots per season."

Louisiana Tech faces a task of competing at the WAC level with one of the smaller budgets in the league. Coach White is all too familiar with the situation, as Ole Miss had the smallest basketball budget in the SEC while he was an assistant there.

"If you do a great job in your region, you can get away with a smaller budget," said White, who at Ole Miss helped recruit with the smallest basketball budget in the SEC. "I think that budgets are a little bit over rated. I think some of these programs live a little more glamorous than they need to."

Coach White said it is very important to develop relationships with the area high school coaches. "We want to be as visible as anybody," he said. "We want to be as visible as possible with the programs in the state as well as the surrounding areas."

So with no junior college scoring champions walking through that door, who is going to score points for next year's Bulldogs?

"Everybody we sign we like to think can score the ball," said Coach White. "If not next year, at least the following year. We will have to find ways to manufacture points. We will spend all summer and all fall working on our individual skill development.

White talked about starting with a clean slate. "Next year, when we sit down with everyone, they will all have an equal opportunity," he said. " If a freshman can beat out a junior or a senior, then so be it."

White reiterated the need for his team to get more athletic, which is obviosly a key for a team that wants to push the ball.

"We need to improve our overall athleticism," added Coach White. "That's our biggest area of concern in recruiting. We need to be more athletic. In three years, I think you will see a different kind of raw athlete across our roster. I'd love to play as fast as we can and press and run as much as possible."

With the recent commitment of Raheem Appleby and the signing of Kenny Smith, Coach White has two guards that can really force the issue. They can score on their own, and the point guard Smith can create for his teammates. Mike Kyser, who signed nearly two weeks ago, is a long and athletic big man who fits the mold of a longer, more athletic front court player that Coach White is looking for.

They haven't played a game yet, but you can already see what kind of team will be hitting the floor of the Thomas Assembly Center this fall. The plan is in place, so Tech fans can can get ready for a fun ride as this program grows before their eyes.

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