Coming off of a national championship appearance, the Texas Tech Red Raiders struggled with consistency all year. Will they be back in contention in 2020-21?
After a breakout 2018-19 under head coach Chris Beard, Texas Tech Basketball took a step back in 2019-20. At the conclusion of the season, the Red Raiders only had 18 wins; its lowest total since 2016-17 and an enormous drop off from the 31 wins a season ago.
Early in the season, the Red Raiders showed they may be able to make a run during March by pulling off five straight wins. Albeit the wins were against sub-par teams but the wins started to add up until they faced Iowa.
The 11-point loss to Iowa in late November began a string of three straight losses. Despite having four different streaks of multiple losses throughout the season, the Red Raiders were putting it all together at the end of the season. Instead of, what we probably assumed were going to be major blowouts at the time, the Red Raiders held tight to Baylor, at Baylor, with a 3 point overtime loss followed by a 4 point home loss against Kansas.
The Texas Tech Red Raiders’ high point came early in the season when they reached their highest ranking after the first week of play. After the first week, however, the Red Raiders dropped in the rankings as losses piled up. It’s an interesting dichotomy, though, with such a young team. Despite four losses to end the season and the uncertainty of competition in March, the Red Raiders could have been a ‘cinderella’ team.
The Raiders experienced two straight overtime losses in late November/early December which was devastating for a young team still trying to find its identity after losing three of their top scorers from the previous season. What kind of effect did those losses have on a team that experienced two more close overtime losses? A huge one. The players are 18 and 19 years old. There’s no doubt they experienced some of their own self-doubts after two straight devastating losses which affected their performance later in the season.