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Texas Tech kicks off Big-12 play at West Virginia

The Red Raiders will begin their chase for a Big-12 championship

NCAA Basketball: Jimmy V Classic -West Virginia at Florida Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

After an 11-1 start in nonconference, the Texas Tech Red Raiders will look to continue their success in Big-12 play. On Wednesday, Tech will travel to Morgantown to take on the 8-4 West Virginia Mountaineers.

West Virginia began the year ranked number 13 in the AP poll, but an early loss to Buffalo knocked the Mountaineers out.

While WVU began the year ranked inside the top-25, people who follow the program closely had to realize that this was going to be a rebuilding year. The program was being forced to replace two historic players in Jevon Carter and Daxter Miles Jr. Over their careers, the two guards combined for over 25 points per game. Obviously, the West Virginia coaching staff has had a lot of trouble replacing the talent and leadership that Miles and Carter brought to the table.

So far, Esa Ahmad and Sagaba Konate have been the two players that have taken charge in this young season. Esa Ahmad leads his team in scoring per game with 14.3 ppg. Konate has also been very impressive, however, he hasn't played in West Virginia's last three games and is not expected to be ready for Wednesday’s game.

His absence will be obvious. West Virginia might be scrambling on the defensive side to replace Konate’s rebounding and shot-blocking ability. Chris Beard and the Texas Tech big men will need to capitalize on the opportunity and own the paint.

The game will tip off at 6 PM CST and it can be viewed on ESPNU.