If the United Supermarket’s Arena wasn’t rocking already, tomorrow night’s matchup between No. 8 Texas Tech (15-1) and Iowa State (12-4) will see all of Tech’s students back on campus. To further engage students, Coach Beard has set up a live Fireside Chat 8pm tonight at Chimy’s. In addition to previewing the game with the voice of Texas Tech Geoff Haxton, there will be free Fireside Chat koozies given out to fans.
Texas Tech is coming off of a historic victory in Austin after 22 winless seasons in the Frank Erwin Center. Now they will play host to another prominent Big 12 team, Iowa State, who is in a slide after their surprising domination of Kansas. The Red Raiders are currently 10-0 at home this season and boast a 43-4 all-time record under Coach Beard. That success hasn’t all been on the backs of the nation’s best defense; a lot of it comes from the culture that Beard is building in Lubbock.
Texas Tech head coach Chris Beard on the mass of Red Raider fans in attendance: "We’re building something special in Lubbock. We won’t apologize for it."— Trenton Daeschner (@TrentDaeschner) January 12, 2019
Iowa State is having a rather disheartening conference play, having lost to Baylor and Kansas State following a 77-60 thumping of Kansas. Despite sitting 2-2 in conference, the Cyclones remain an incredible threat to the Red Raiders’ home court record. Standout guard Marial Shayok averages 19.4ppg and Tyrese Haliburton is a rising star. Their ability to put up points is obvious as their season average hovers around the 80 mark. However, the kryptonite (made clear by their 57 points against Kansas State) is good defense. If the points allowed (PA) margin of the table below is any indicator - Tech has an advantage.
In addition to Jarret Culver’s all-star production this season, Coach Beard will be looking towards Matt Mooney and Davide Moretti to help bolster the offensive production. Each has had a substantial game where Culver was either keyed up on or having an off-night, but going further into the schedule the Red Raiders need to benefit from multiple shooters. Tariq Owens and Kyler Edwards have also been key for Texas Tech on the defensive end. In fact, five out of the top ten players on Sports Reference’s defensive rating are Red Raiders.
Last year the two teams split the series with Texas Tech winning 76-58 in Lubbock and Iowa State winning 70-52 in Ames. Coach Beard will be looking to start this years series with a similar output tomorrow night at 8pm in the United Supermarket’s Arena.