After snapping a four-game winning streak with an 85-57 home loss to Arizona, the Texas Tech men’s basketball team will look to begin another winning streak when it hosts Northern Kentucky at 6 p.m. Tuesday in United Spirit Arena.
Freshman guard Dusty Hannahs said the opportunity to face a top-10 team like Arizona was a good experience for Tech, and the Red Raiders only will get better from this point forward.
Northern Kentucky is winless this season, including a 70-43 loss to No. 4 Ohio State on Saturday.
The Norse are led by senior guard Eshaunte Jones, who is averaging 14.4 points per game so far this season.
Tech coach Chris Walker said the Red Raiders are eager to move past their loss to Arizona and focus on the next game in front of them.
“That’s the beautiful thing about basketball, you don’t have to wait long (to play again),” Walker said. “Football, you have to wait six, seven days. Basketball, you get right back at it. So we want to feel good again about this whole deal. We’ve got a nice little break after this game with finals, so it’ll be good to get a win.”
Tech was outrebounded in its last two performances, which included a victory against Jackson State and a loss to Arizona.
Junior forward Jaye Crocket said rebounding was one of the many points of emphasis the Red Raiders noticed when watching film from the Arizona loss.
Crockett said he thinks he can reach his full potential as a player simply by doing whatever is needed to help the Red Raiders win.
“I just want my team to win,” he said. “If I need to go out there and score, then I’m going to go out there and score. If I need to go out there and rebound, then I’m going to go out there and rebound to help this team. I just really want to win because this program hasn’t been where (I’ve) wanted it to be in the last couple of years.
“We’ve had some good teams. The results of the team haven’t proved how hard the team works or how talented the team has been.”
December will be the Red Raiders’ final opportunity to fine-tune areas in which they may be lacking before beginning Big 12 Conference play with TCU on Jan 5.
Walker said although Northern Kentucky has not won a game yet, Tech is preparing for them the same way it prepared for Arizona.
“Obviously, we respect Northern Kentucky,” he said. “They’ve had some tough, close losses. They haven’t won yet, but that’s not indicative of what kind of team they have. So we’re taking them very seriously, as we would do any team.”
Fox Sports Southwest will televise Tech’s game against Northern Kentucky.
Walker said the focus of the Red Raiders continues to be making strides toward becoming the best team possible.
“As far as I’m concerned, it’s always about Texas Tech,” he said. “We need to make sure we’re the best team we can be, and we know what we’re doing on the court, and we play as hard as we can and then we focus on the other team.”