Beard ready for second round against Texas Tech
AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Texas head coach knew he would be the center of attention when Texas took on Texas Tech this season. On Feb. 1, Beard and the Longhorns were beaten soundly in Lubbock, trailing 14 at halftime before losing 77-64. He’s trying to figure out how to prepare his side to beat the 11th-ranked Red Raiders, who are coming off their second win against Baylor this season, rather than the emotion of the game.
“We’re going to have to be a lot more productive and tough around the basket with the rebounding game,” Beard said. “They have very good players and I think coach (Mark) Adams would be the first to tell you that. It will not be the coaches who will play, it will be the players. I’ve had the privilege and honor of coaching some of these guys who I know as well as anyone, maybe better. This is the most talented team in the Big 12 player for player or one of.
Considering the emotion that filled the game in Lubbock and is now ending the season streak, it might make sense that Beard just wanted those games to be behind him. “I don’t see it that way. Someone I really respect in West Texas who I won’t mention by name said something like I’m just glad I was done with that first one and I didn’t really get that. I understand the question, because of the link with this game, but personally I don’t see it like that, I see it as a chance to play against one of the best teams in the country, at home.
Beard hopes the Erwin Center can create an atmosphere similar to what Texas experienced in Lubbock. He hopes students with the Big Ticket will take advantage and show up even if it means sitting on the top deck to fill the arena. The Longhorns have been tough at home, claiming 15 of 16 wins, including victories over three ranked opponents. While Texas Tech is 16-0 at home, the Red Raiders are just 2-5 behind Lubbock. Their last road game was a 70-55 loss at Oklahoma on Feb. 9, where Texas won in overtime on Tuesday.
In the first game between these two teams, Texas Tech shot 56% in the first half, including 5-11 from 3-pointers. The Red Raiders’ five starters combined for 63 of their 77 points, led by Kevin McCullar’s 19 points. Texas is again expected to be without forward Tre Mitchell, who took personal time off from the team before the game against Oklahoma.
It’s a key game in the Big 12 standings, Texas Tech is tied for second with Baylor at 9-4 behind Kansas 10-2 while Texas is in fourth place at 8-5.