Ncaa tournament texas tech’s chris beard compares player to food chicken gizzards in a pressure cooker

DALLAS — enchiladas came to mind for chris beard, head coach of the texas tech men’s basketball, when he was asked about coaching the team’s senior point guard, keenan evans.

“it is like when you go to a good movie and you know it’s getting towards the end, but you are loving the movie so much, you want it to go a little bit farther,’’ beard said thursday. “or you’ve got a good plate of enchiladas and you’re looking at it, and you only have two bites left, but it’s so good, you turn it into three bites.’’

Apparently beard was just warming for friday, when he regaled the media with stories about bob knight’s affinity with root beer shakes, the wee hours at a whataburger restaurant and an italian player’s displeasure with chicken strips.

Beard’s third-seeded red raiders will play the sixth-seeded florida gators on saturday in the second round of the NCAA tournament.

But his news conference friday at times sounded like an episode for the food channel.Want root

Beard, who served as an assistant coach at texas tech under knight from 2001 to 2011, recalled knight’s exchange with the woman taking their order at a sonic drive-in.

“the lady is like, ‘so you want a milkshake with root beer in it?’ ‘no. I want a root beer milkshake.’ ‘you want the root beer to substitute the milk?’ ‘no, I want a root beer milkshake.’

“that is when coach knight and I were on I-20 going to, I think, to rockwall high school (in texas) on that one. But no, back to whataburger…”

“…I do enjoy a milkshake, but I never substitute that as my drink. Even in the days where I didn’t have much money, and I’m very fortunate now, I’m blessed, I would never be the guy that substituted it. I would go ahead, man, I’ve got to get the unsweet tea, and then I get the milkshake, too.

“…have you ever been to whataburger at 2:00, 3:00 in the morning? Don’t go through the drive-thru. Go in next time, and just get a corner booth and just watch america.Beard said just watch it.

“you’ll see so many cool things at whataburger. You will see a guy pick up a tab for somebody else. You’ll see somebody clean up a plate that wasn’t his. You’ll see some of the bad things in america, too, at a whataburger late, but I love people watching, and that’s one of the many things I do.”

Speaking of food — yes, still speaking of food — beard said he has tried to incorporate pasta and cheesecake into every meal this season as a courtesy to davide “moro” moretti, a freshman guard from italy.

“classic moro style, he had been in lubbock for about five or days and he came to my office, he is a quiet guy,’’ beard said. “…he’s like, coach, everything is good, apartment, coaching staff, language, no problem, academics, I got it, but the fuel the body part, coach — because that’s what we call the nutrition, fuel our body in the process — too much chicken strips.’’

“do we eat chicken strips every meal?Root beer is this america?’’beard recalled moretti asking him. “so we’ve tried to get away from the chicken strips a little bit this year and go with pasta and cheesecake for moro.’’

No problem burning off those calories if you play for beard, known for a commitment to tough defense. On friday, beard said, his team spent 70 minutes of the 90-minute practice working on defense.

“you go to a high school or junior college practices and you see the backup people shorts, “defense,” and then you watch a two-hour practice and they don’t work on defense at all,’’ he said. “with us, we talk about it and believe it.”

“I think breakfast, we go taquito,’’ he said. “if my girlfriend is not with me or my daughters, I’ll go extra cheese. During the day, I’m pretty easy, it’s just a one, mustard, pickle cheese only. I’ll go with the milk shake.’’