The Texas Tech Red Raiders were on the wrong side of the official start of madness to begin March. They entered the Big 12 tournament as the No. 2 seed and drew a matchup with the 14-19 West Virginia Mountaineers, who entered as the last seed overall. But as we’ve seen so many times before, the records were irrelevant in this matchup, as West Virginia pulled off a stunner.
The Mountaineers defeated the Red Raiders, who were ranked No. 7 in the entire country entering this game by a score of 79-74 to head to the Big 12 tournament semifinal. Fortunately, Texas Tech is still going dancing, as their 26-6 record and 14-4 mark in conference play is more than enough to keep them as a high seed overall.
But moving forward, the question becomes where the Red Raiders will land in the bracket and what seed they’ll earn.
Texas Tech’s NCAA Tournament Outlook
Prior to the loss, Texas Tech was a No. 3 seed in the Midwest bracket according to ESPN’s Joe Lunardi. But the outlook of where they land and how far they fall could depend on the teams around them. To this point, the other three-seeds in the Michigan Wolverines, Purdue Boilermakers and Houston Cougars haven’t suffered any big setbacks, although they could obviously change.
But it’s the No. 4 seeds who could be a threat to Texas Tech’s seeding. According to Lunardi, this is a group which includes the Wisconsin Badgers, Florida State Seminoles, Kansas State Wildcats and Kansas Jayhawks. The Red Raiders were almost helped out slightly when FSU was taken to overtime against the Virginia Tech Hokies, but they won in a wild finish, potentially pushing their seed up.
Beyond that, BracketMatrix.com, which takes the average seeds from a number of brackets and comes up with a consensus average seed had Texas Tech at a 2.92 average. This was prior to the loss, so it leaves things up in the air still.
Texas Tech NCAA Tournament Resume
Other than the loss to West Virginia, the Red Raiders’ tournament resume is incredibly impressive. Each of their other losses came against teams with 19 or more wins in the Duke Blue Devils, Iowa State Cyclones, Baylor Bears, Kansas State Wildcats and Kansas Jayhawks. They’ve looked like the real deal, and one setback won’t be enough to derail their outlook as a top seed.
But there is a very real chance it could drop them down to a No. 4 seed from No. 3. There was also a small chance that they could have jumped up to a No. 2 with a big run, but that didn’t pan out.