In the wake of Chris Beard’s departure from the Texas Tech basketball program, four members of the current team have entered the transfer portal.
Anytime there is a change in the leadership of a program, there is going to be turnover on the roster. That’s certainly the case with the Texas Tech basketball program as four members of the current roster have entered the transfer portal in the wake of Chris Beard’s departure.
The first was junior Kyler Edwards, who was rumored to be interested in a transfer long before the Beard to Texas saga began. Thus, his decision, which was announced just moments after Beard’s move became known, was no surprise.
This past year, Edwards was a lightning rod for Texas Tech basketball fans. A solid player who averaged 10.1 points and 4.8 rebounds per game, he started 26 of 29 games this past season.
But Edwards was at times a huge disappointment, especially when facing good teams. In fact, in 12 games against ranked teams this year, he averaged just 7.6 points per game.
Still, he impacted the game in other ways, especially on defense where he was one of Tech’s best perimeter defenders. He had a defensive rating of 94.1, which was impressive given how often he had to check one of the opposing team’s best offensive weapons.
Another solid defensive player who has put his name into the transfer portal is senior Marcus Santos-Silva, who apparently will use the extra year of eligibility that the NCAA has granted all players due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Playing only one year as a Red Raider after transferring from Virginia Commonwealth, he averaged 8.3 points and 6.4 rebounds per game while starting all 29 contests. Despite being only 6-foot-7, he proved to be a solid low post defender who could hold his own against bigger players.
But he is extremely limited as an offensive player. With no semblance of a jump shot and no real ball-handling skills, he was limited to being a back-to-the-basket player and at times, he limited what Tech could do on offense, which is why the Red Raiders so often went to a small-ball lineup with Santos-Silva on the bench when in need of scoring.
Speaking of offensively limited players, freshman forward Micah Peavy has also put his name in the portal. He averaged 5.7 points and 3.1 rebounds per game while making 25 starts this year.
One of the highest-rated recruits to ever sign with the Red Raiders, Peavy fully bought into what the previous coaching staff preached about playing hard and being aggressive in all aspects of the game. He was not afraid to mix it up on the glass or to obtain a few floor burns while battling for a loose ball. That was refreshing to see from such a highly-touted player.
But while all of those players were significant contributors this past season, you could argue that Kevin McCullar Jr. was Texas Tech’s best all-around player. That’s why his entrance into the transfer portal cuts a little deeper.
Averaging 10.4 points and 6.3 rebounds per game, the sophomore was one of Tech’s most reliable players this past season. What’s more, he led the team in defensive rating at 89.6 points allowed per 100 possessions.
McCullar is a winning player, one who does everything a team needs in order to be successful. Thus, his potential departure is rather disturbing.
Of course, all of these players could choose to return to Lubbock if they feel comfortable with whoever is hired as the next head coach. But for now, this mass exodus from the program is somewhat concerning and only adds more consternation for Red Raider basketball fans.