LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -The Red Raiders hosted their first official basketball practice Tuesday and coming off an Elite 8 season for the first time in program history, Texas Tech is excited about the upcoming season.
There are new names and numbers on the roster, but one of the key returning players is Sophomore guard Jarrett Culver, who is a Coronado High School graduate.
Culver averaged 26 minutes a game, scoring 11 points a contest.
At the first news conference of the season, Red Raider Head Coach Chris Beard didn’t shy away from his thoughts on what Culver can do for the team.
“One of our core values in our program is truth-telling. We really try to stay in reality and not try to overthink things. I say these things very confidently and with 100 percent belief," Beard said. "Jarret Culver has a chance to be one of, if not the best player to ever play at this school. I say that with all due respect to all the great players before him.”
With Keenan Evans graduated and Zhaire Smith one and done to the NBA, Culver is the leading scorer returning to the team, who played them most minutes. Beard believes he will be a huge factor this season as he steps up his game in his second season.
“Where my confidence comes in Jarrett isn’t his talent or length or athleticism or what some NBA people might be saying or not saying. It comes from his day to day habits," Beard said. "How he works and eliminates distractions and simply stated gets in the gym every single day and works at his craft.”
Beard said he wouldn’t put high praise on Culver If he couldn’t handle it.
“I don’t want to put the weight of the world on the young guys’ shoulders, but I will tell you I’m proud to be his coach. I expect great things," Beard said. "I think when it’s all said and done, he’ll got down as one of the best players to ever play at this school.”
The Red Raiders open the season facing Incarnate Word Nov. 6 at 6:30 p.m.