2021 Texas Tech Red Raiders College Basketball Preview

Texas Tech Red Raiders College Basketball Preview
  • Head Coach: Mark Adams (first season)

Notable Wins: at. Texas, at. Oklahoma, at. LSU

After reaching the National Championship for the first time in school history in 2019, Texas Tech Red Raiders college basketball team responded with a solid season that was just two points away from the Sweet Sixteen. The Red Raiders won eight of their first ten games, then responded to a loss to Oklahoma State by winning six of their next eight.

Texas Tech would miss three games after a loss to West Virginia due to weather hazards before returning and dropping road games to both Kansas and Oklahoma State. They responded by winning their final three home games but lost by a point to Texas in the Big 12 Tournament, 67-66. They survive Mt. Queda and Utah State in the first round, but they’d fall to Arkansas in the Round of 32, 68-66.

The loss to the Razorbacks would be head coach Chris Beard’s final game at the helm, as he received the opportunity to coach at his alma mater Texas, which will surely spice the Lone Star Showdown up. Mark Adams will take over as head coach after spending seven seasons as an assistant coach on Beard’s staff. Adams has had stops at West Texas A&M and Howard College, where he won a 2010 NJCAA Championship with Phoenix Suns forward Jae Crowder leading the charge.

Texas Tech Red Raiders College Basketball Roster Changes

  • Key Returners: G Kevin McCullar, F Marcus Santos-Silva
  • Key Losses: G Mat McClung, G Terrence Shannon Jr., G Kyler Edwards
  • Key Newcomers: F Daniel Batcho, F Bryson Williams, G Sardaar Calhoun

Texas Tech Red Raiders College Basketball Coach Mark Adams

Along with losing one of the most successful head coaches in school history, Texas Tech lost three key pieces from last year’s squad. Guards Mat McClung and Terence Shannon supplied the firepower offensively for the Red Raiders. McClung led the team in scoring (15.5) and was awarded Big 12 Newcomer of the Year for his efforts.

Terrence Shannon Jr. was second on the team in scoring with 12.9 ppg, and he scored 20 points in the tourney loss to Arkansas. Losing lead guard Kyler Edwards will hurt as well. He posted solid averages 10.1 ppg, 4.8 rpg, and a team-leading 2.8 apg, and he was their best perimeter defender. He’ll finish his college career with in-state rival Houston, while highly touted guard Micah Peavy left after one year and transferred to in-state TCU.

Despite losing a lot of guard play, the Red Raiders may be suited to go a bit bigger this season. Coach Adams was able to length through the transfer portal by signing forwards Daniel Batcho and Bryson Williams.

Batcho is transferring in from Arizona, but an injury prevented him from suiting up with the Wildcats. He was named MVP of the Adidas Next Generation Tournament in Belgrade, averaging 14.8 points, 11.3 rebounds and 1.8 blocked shots while also shooting 69.7 percent inside the arc over the four games.

If healthy, he has the potential to come in and be a focal point offensively. Williams starred at in-state UTEP before signing with TTU, and he scored 15.1 ppg, and led the Miners in rebounding (7.4). Incoming guards Sardaar Calhoun and Davion Warren should help fill the voids in the backcourt.

On a positive note, Texas Tech was able to retain their two best defensive players from last season in Kevin McCullar and Marcus Santos-Silva. McCullar has the ability to guard positions 1-3 effectively, and he averaged 10.4 ppg, 6.3 rpg, and 1.7 spg.

Santos-Silva transferred over from VCU and had a solid season, scoring 8.3 ppg and leading the Red Raiders in rebounding (6.4). Newcomer KJ Allen will bring experience and versatility to the rotation. He was rated the top JUCO prospect in California at his position.

Outlook

Projected Lineup: G Sardaar Calhoun, G Kevin McCullar, F Bryson Williams, F Marcos Santos-Silva, F Daniel Batcho

A lot has changed in Lubbock over the past 24 months. Chris Beard was building a contender, and Texas Tech was starting to become a power in their crowded state. Texas Tech lost a lot of leadership on and off of the floor, and with a first-time Division I head coach in Mark Adams, this season will be a transition of sorts. The departures of Mat McClung and Terrence Shannon Jr. will linger as the Red Raiders will have put together a brand new nucleus this season.

It may be an obstacle early on, but Texas Tech won’t become an easy out. Adams is a protege of Beard, so the same rugged defensive culture should remain in play. It may be tougher for the Red Raiders to play possession-heavy basketball without the guard play of recent years, but they will have the size to play a much more physical game this season.

Look out for newcomers Bryson Williams and Daniel Batcho, as their play will be vital to the team’s success. WreckEm!

Projected Finish: 8th in Big 12, NIT Bid

About Corey Ghee 11 Articles
Avid sports writer and bettor. VCU Alum. Dodgers Fan. Cameron Crazy. Longhorn Football. James Harden Advocate. 4x Fantasy Football Champion. I love the game of basketball but I serve a diverse perspective of sports, from court to field to pitch to diamond to ice to clay. There’s always a decision, and a profit to be made. I’m here to help and learn along the way. Spreads, lines, totals, let’s win together.