Red Raiders return to national rankings

LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas Tech is back in the national rankings at No. 23 in the Associated Press Top 25 and USA TODAY Coaches Polls after splitting a pair of games last week against top-10 opponents. The Red Raiders (18-7, 7-5 Big 12) rolled to a 79-50 win over Kansas last Monday in Lubbock before falling 82-74 at Iowa State. The Cyclones jumped up to No. 6 from No. 10 after the win while the Jayhawks went from six to nine.

Tech is also back at home where it will host TCU (18-7, 7-5 Big 12) at 8 p.m. on Tuesday at United Supermarkets Arena. The Horned Frogs are receiving votes in the AP Top 25 and are at No. 23 in the USA TODAY Coaches Poll. The Red Raiders are also up to No. 23 in Kenpom and No. 26 in the NCAA NET Rankings. TCU is at 33 in Kenpom and 36 in the NET.

UConn (24-2) remains at No. 1 in the AP Top 25 followed by No. 2 Houston (22-3, 9-3 Big 12), No. 3 Purdue (23-3), No. 4 Arizona (20-5), and No. 5 Tennessee (19-6). The Cyclones (20-5, 9-3 Big 12) come in at No. 6 while No. 9 Kansas (20-6, 8-5 Big 12), No. 11 Baylor (19-6, 8-4 Big 12), and No. 25 BYU (18-7, 6-6 Big 12) give the conference six teams in the poll this week.

Along with polls and rankings, Texas Tech is statistically fourth in the Big 12 by averaging 74.5 points through 12 conference games and is second by shooting 46.7 percent from the field and 38.8 on 3-pointers. The Red Raiders are second in the conference with 8.5 3-pointers made per Big 12 game and the leaders at 76.9% at the free-throw line. Pop Isaacs leads Tech and is fifth within Big 12 play at 16.4 points per game, while Joe Toussaint is leading the team with 4.2 assists and is adding 12.5 points per game. Toussaint led Tech with 16 points and four assists at Iowa State. Darrion Williams comes into this week with three straight double-doubles after 12 points and 11 rebounds at Iowa State after his career-high 30 points against Kansas where he was 12-for-12 from the field and 4-for-4 on 3-pointers. Williams is averaging 7.6 rebounds per conference which ranks second in the Big 12 behind only Hunter Dickinson who is at 9.5 for Kansas. Williams now has seven double-doubles which leads the team and is third in the Big 12. In the loss at TCU, Isaacs led Tech with 25 points and nine assists while Warren Washington had 14 points and Chance McMillian scored 19 with five 3-pointers. Tech was 14-for-28 on 3-pointers in the loss – the most 3s in a Big 12 game this season. Washington missed the game last Saturday at Iowa State with a foot injury and is listed as day-to-day. He is currently leading Tech with 7.7 rebounds and 1.6 blocked shots per game.

Texas Tech dropped out of the national rankings after its loss at No. 13 Baylor (Feb. 6) before returning this week at No. 23 in both. At No. 23 nationally two week ago also, the Red Raiders were ranked for the fourth straight week after entering in the Week 11 poll at No. 25 in the AP Top 25 and USA TODAY Coaches Poll (January 15, 2024). Tech was at No. 15 in the Week 12 poll for its highest ranking of the season. The team came into the 2023-24 season unranked AP Preseason Poll and had remained unranked in the Nov. 13, Nov. 20, Nov. 27, Dec. 4, Dec. 11, Dec. 18, Dec. 25, Jan. 1, and Jan. 8 polls. Tech received votes for the first time this season with 62 in the January 8 poll after the Texas win to open Big 12 play.

Release Provided By WES BLOOMQUIST Texas Tech Athletics

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