The Texas Longhorns wrap up the regular season with an away date in Lubbock to take on the Texas Tech Red Raiders. Tubby Smith's crew is better than the 13-17 record they sport. Ranked 86th in Ken Pomeroy's rankings, the Red Raiders are the first team on the list with a record under .500.
Texas Tech has two solid wins at home, against Baylor and Oklahoma State. The Red Raiders were also nice enough to beat Oklahoma on the road. That said, Texas Tech has lost its last six games (albeit all the losses were to KenPom top 50 teams).
The Red Raiders are led by a solid duo of 6' 7" wings in senior Jaye Crockett and junior Jordan Tolbert. Crockett and Tolbert are 1-2 in scoring and rebounding. Crockett averages 13.5 PPG and 6.3 RPG; Tolbert 10.6 and 6.0. Both players do most of their scoring damage inside the arc, and are both plus offensive rebounders. Jonathan Holmes and Connor Lammert will have their hands full taking on Crockett at the 4, while Demarcus Holland once again gets the unenviable task of bodying up on a bigger 3.
Texas Tech's best three-point shooter is sixth man Dusty Hannahs. Hannahs, a 6' 4" sophomore, has hit 38% of his 3's this year, going 41-108. He rotates minutes with starter Toddrick Gotcher, a 6' 4" sophomore glue guy. Tech's starting point guard is 6' 3" junior Robert Turner.
7' 0" senior Dejan Kravic rounds out the starting lineup. Kravic has size but not much else. He'll block a few shots, grab a few rebounds, and generally take up space. Cameron Ridley has a girth advantage, but Kravic should give Ridley a somewhat spirited battle inside.
The Red Raiders aren't a great defensive team, but Texas has struggled to score on the road this year. Easy buckets are key: if Texas can put back offensive rebounds and get freebies at the free throw line, it's a plus. On offense, Texas Tech does work on the boards but struggles to manufacture points. If Texas can limit easy interior attempts from Crockett and Tolbert, the Red Raiders will have to turn to other, less efficient ways of scoring.
The game is on at 3:00 p.m. on ESPNNews. Hook 'em.