Texas Tech head basketball coach Chris Beard announced the roster for the 2020-2021 basketball season on late Tuesday. The team listed seven returners and seven newcomers.
There are five freshmen on the roster: Nimari Burnett, a combo guard from Chicago, is the second highest-rated recruit in program history, according to 247Sports Composite rankings. Micah Peavy is a forward from Duncanville High School. Peavy played with former Red Raider Jahmi’us Ramsey during his junior season at Duncanville. In fact, the tandem led Duncanville to a state championship in 2019. The Red Raiders also added some size on the wing in Chibuzo Agbo Jr., a forward from San Diego, California. Tyreek Smith, a forward from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, will also add some size on the court for Tech with a 6-foot-7 frame. Smith was with the team last year but did not play due to an injury before the start of the season. He has used a medical redshirt and will be a redshirt freshman this season. Center Vladislav Goldin was the most recent addition to the team, committing in early July. Goldin is 7-foot-1 and from Putnam Science Academy, the same high school as former Red Raider Russell Tchewa.
“I proudly say this is one of, if not the best recruiting class in this program’s history,” Beard said.
Beard also mentioned during a media availability how important returners are to constructing his roster. The Red Raiders have seven returners coming back to the program.
“This year, there is a special excitement in our program because we have as many returners as we’ve ever had,” Beard said.
The team has four returning sophomores: Forward Terrence Shannon Jr. is returning after earning a spot on the Big 12’s All-Freshman team last season. Redshirt sophomore Kevin McCullar has continued to earn compliments from the coaching staff.
“Kev might have been our best player at the end of the year,” Beard said.
Clarence Nadolny, a guard from Montreuil, France, will rejoin the backcourt after averaging 6.1 minutes per game last season, according to Tech Athletics. Joel Ntambwe was with the team last season but was forced to sit out after his waiver for immediate eligibility was denied by the NCAA. Ntambwe will be a redshirt sophomore this season.
The four juniors consist of two returners and two transfers. Kyler Edwards returns after starting every game last season. Avery Benson will also be rejoining the team as a redshirt junior. Mac McClung is a transfer from Georgetown University. McClung will wear number 0 this season after Edwards offered it via Twitter during McClung’s recruitment. McClung is known for his high-flying athleticism and dunking ability. Jamarius Burton transferred into the program from Wichita State. During his freshman season, he had 126 total assists which was a school record according to Tech Athletics.
Both McClung and Burton have filed waivers to the NCAA for immediate eligibility, and both are still pending as of Sept. 3.
Esahia Nyiwe, a junior who transferred into the program from Clarendon College, is no longer with the team. Coach Beard said that Nyiwe had the intention of pursuing playing basketball in a professional route due to playing time concerns.
There is one singular senior: Marcus Santos-Silva. Santos-Silva is immediately eligible after completing online classes and graduating this summer. The three-year vet from Virginia Commonwealth averaged 8.9 rebounds per game last season, according to ESPN.
“We think we’ve got the best senior in college basketball,” Beard said about Santos-Silva. “It’s the intangibles that we love. This guy’s a leader, he’s unselfish… he’s just a special guy.”
The Red Raiders boast the No. 10 recruiting class in 2020 on a national scale, and the top class in the Big 12 conference, according to 247sports. This is the highest ranking they have received in program history.