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Three is Key

This season, as the deep shooting goes, so do the Red Raiders.

NCAA Basketball: Louisiana State at Texas Tech Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Chris Beard’s new offensive system has brought changes from Tubby Smith’s more stagnant offense. These changes have resulted in a team field goal percentage up from 44.8 percent last season to 49.3 percent this year. Three point shooting this season is vastly improved from last year as well. Last year the team shot 34.6 percent from deep whereas this year the team is shooting 38.4 percent from three.

However, this offense isn’t always executed properly. It can be difficult to tell when the offense is functioning well and when it isn’t, so what do you look for when trying to figure it out? One of the biggest indicators of a functioning Red Raider offense is a high three point percentage.

This motion offense results in a good deal of open three point shots when the ball is moving well. If the ball gets too stagnant, the offense produces contested jump shots and other bad looks. Texas Tech’s defensive performance has been fairly consistent this season, but the offense has been more varied.

Offensive execution has been the triumph or downfall of Tech this season. This season, Texas Tech is undefeated when they shoot 40 percent or better from the three point line. The one game Tech hit 40 percent on the mark against Kansas State they won by 1 point.

The Red Raiders have more shooters this season, which allows these offensive changes to play out better. Last year Tech only had one player shooting over 40 percent from three (Justin Gray 42.3) and only four shooting over 35 percent from deep.

In this season, Tech has four players shooting over 40 percent from three and two shooting over 45 percent from deep. That’s even with last year’s leading deep threat Justin Gray having an off season making only 16.7 percent of his threes this year.

When watching the Red Raiders this season, look to the three point shooting when searching for answers. Now you can see why the three is so key.