Texas Tech Men's Basketball 2018 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Texas Tech Red Raiders

Big 12 (24-9, 11-7)


With strong defense and an effective offense that will work for a good shot, Texas Tech was the surprise team in the Big 12 this year. While other teams were often upset by the deep and talented pack of Big 12 teams, the Red Raiders managed to finish 11-7 and tied for second in the conference standings.
Big Wins: 12/5 Nevada (82-76), 1/2 at Kansas (85-73), 2/3 at TCU (83-71)
Bad Losses: 1/20 at Iowa State (52-70), 2/17 at Baylor (57-59), 2/21 at Oklahoma State (71-79)
Coach: Chris Beard
Why They Can Surprise:
Coach Chris Beard has this team playing great defense. The consistent intensity on that end of the floor will keep Texas Tech in every game. Unlike many other teams that play good defense, the Red Raiders will go after steals and create plenty of turnovers. Keenan Evans, Jarrett Culver and Zhaire Smith all average at least one steal per game. As a team, Texas Tech ranks 21st in the country in turnovers forced. The Red Raiders also rank 32nd in turnover margin. Not only will Evans create plenty of turnovers, but he will not often turn the ball over himself. The senior guard has done a superb job of controlling the tempo and setting up his teammates. On the year he is averaging 3.2 assists per game and just 1.8 turnovers. But Evans is also the team’s top scorer and when he is at his best, this team can beat anybody.
Why They Can Disappoint:
If Evans is not hitting shots, offense can be tough to come by. Culver is a capable outside shooter and Smith usually creates some offense by attacking the basket. If those two and Evans are making shots, Texas Tech does not need anybody else to step up. However, those are not the most consistent scorers, especially since Culver and Smith are just freshmen, and often Coach Beard will need a good offensive showing from somebody else. Justin Gray and Brandone Francis add more options on the perimeter, while Norense Odiase, Tommy Hamilton IV and Zach Smith are the main frontcourt scoring threats. If Texas Tech can manage to establish somebody as an interior scoring threat, it really opens up space for the proven scorers on the perimeter.
Probable Starters:
Keenan Evans, Senior, Guard, 17.5 ppg, 3.2 apg
Zhaire Smith, Freshman, Guard, 11.3 ppg, 1.7 apg, 4.7 rpg, 1.2 bpg
Jarrett Culver, Freshman, Guard, 11.7 ppg, 1.8 apg, 4.8 rpg
Justin Gray, Senior, Guard, 5.0 ppg, 1.1 apg, 3.4 rpg
Norense Odiase, Junior, Center, 4.1 ppg, 4.7 rpg
Key Role Players:
Tommy Hamilton IV, Senior, Forward, 5.8 ppg, 3.2 rpg
Brandone Francis, Junior, Guard, 5.3 ppg
Niem Stevenson, Senior, Guard, 7.5 ppg, 1.8 apg
Zach Smith, Senior, Forward, 5.9 ppg, 3.7 rpg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 75.7 (123rd in nation, 6th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 64.5 (17, 1)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.4 (93, 6)
Field-Goal Defense: 40.2 (14, 1)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.0 (242, 9)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 36.0 (130, 4)
Free-Throw Percentage: 70.7 (200, 7)
Rebound Margin: 4.0 (57, 3)
Assists Per Game: 14.5 (115, 6)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.7 (151, 7)
Recent Postseason Appearances:
2016    NCAA Round of 64 loss to Butler
2010    NIT     First Round win over Seton Hall
2010    NIT     Second Round win over Jacksonville
2010    NIT     Quarterfinal loss to Mississippi
2007    NCAA Round of 64 loss to Boston College
2005    NCAA Round of 64 win over UCLA
2005    NCAA Round of 32 win over Gonzaga
2005    NCAA Regional Semifinal loss to West Virginia
2004    NCAA Round of 64 win over Charlotte
2004    NCAA Round of 32 loss to St. Joseph's
2003    NIT     First Round win over Nevada
2003    NIT     Second Round win over San Diego State
2003    NIT     Quarterfinal win over Georgia Tech
2003    NIT     Semifinal loss to St. John's
*all team stats through 3/4