A mere nine months ago, the Texas Tech Red Raiders were seconds away from winning a national championship, trying to cap off an incredible tournament run that included victories over Michigan, Gonzaga and Michigan State. Chris Beard’s squad ultimately lost in overtime to Virginia, ending a 31-7 season.
The Red Raiders' top player from last year, Jarrett Culver, was selected 6th overall in the NBA draft. Beard, however, is still around after being linked to some of the more high-profile coaching jobs in the country during the offseason.
Texas Tech is going through the normal ups and downs, but are still in the midst of a successful season. Currently ranked No. 18 in the country, the Red Raiders are 12-6 overall and 3-3 in Big 12 play. They are coming off a 65-54 loss to TCU where only two starters reached double digit points: Jahmi’us Ramsey with 15, and TJ Holyfield with 10.
Ramsey is the team’s leading scorer at 15.5 points per game, shooting 45% from the field and 40% from behind the arc. He is second on the team in three-point percentage behind Avery Benson (47%) who has only attempted 17 on the year.
Most of Texas Tech’s other scoring comes from guards, including Davide Moretti (13.0 points per game) and Kyler Edwards (11.8 points per game). Moretti is the better outside shooter (38.5% from three-point range) while Edwards scores more often from the interior. Another guard, Terrence Shannon Jr., averages 11.4 points per game and typically starts but came off the bench for the TCU game.
Chris Clarke leads the team in rebounding with essentially eight per game. Ramsey is second on the team with just under five, and forward TJ Holyfield is next with 4.6. For Kentucky, Nick Richards (7.8 per game), EJ Montgomery (5.5 per game) and Nate Sestina (5.1 per game) are tasked with stopping second chance opportunities for the Red Raiders.
Texas Tech has a great home court advantage. They are 9-1 in United Supermarkets Arena, with the only loss coming to current No. 1 Baylor. Kentucky has limited experience in true road games this season, going 2-1 in three opportunities with the loss being at South Carolina.
Texas Tech and Kentucky play tomorrow at 6:00 p.m. ET. The game can be watched on ESPN and the ESPN app.