Texas Tech basketball lands 4-star 2019 forward Terrence Shannon Jr.

LUBBOCK, TX - FEBRUARY 13: The Texas Tech Red Raiders fans storm the court after the game between the Texas Tech Red Raiders and the Baylor Bears on February 13, 2017 at United Supermarkets Arena in Lubbock, Texas. Texas Tech defeated Baylor 84-78. (Photo by John Weast/Getty Images)
LUBBOCK, TX - FEBRUARY 13: The Texas Tech Red Raiders fans storm the court after the game between the Texas Tech Red Raiders and the Baylor Bears on February 13, 2017 at United Supermarkets Arena in Lubbock, Texas. Texas Tech defeated Baylor 84-78. (Photo by John Weast/Getty Images) /

Monday, the Texas Tech basketball program landed a commitment from 2019 forward Terrence Shannon Jr., a 4-star prospect from Chicago.

Life can’t get much better for the Texas Tech basketball program these days.  Just two days after capturing a share of the program’s first ever Big 12 title, the Red Raiders picked up a verbal commitment from one of the top available players in the class of 2019.

Monday, 4-star small forward Terrence Shannon Jr. committed to Texas Tech in a Twitter video.  The Chicago product is rated the No. 84 player in the nation by 247Sports.com and the No. 90 player in the nation by ESPN.com.  He picked the Red Raiders out of a top-5 list that included DePaul, Illinois, Georgetown and Florida State.  In addition, he holds offers from Connecticut, Maryland, Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest.

In August, the 6-foot-6 forward committed to his hometown school, DePaul, only to decommit just a week later.  Two days after that, he picked up an offer from the Red Raiders.

Now, he joins what was already the best signing class in program history.  According to 247Sports.com, Tech’s 2019 class is ranked 14th in the nation and second in the Big 12.  The class now includes three 4-star prospects with shooting guard Jahmius Ramsey from Duncanville, Texas and forward Khalid Thomas, the top-rated JUCO prospect in the nation joining Shannon.

As for Shannon, he is extremely athletic and loves to attack the basket off the dribble.  He has fantastic handle and looks comfortable brining the ball up the court.  What’s more, he is a talented finisher at the rim with a smoothness near the basket reminiscent of Jarrett Culver.  However, he can be a bit too dominant-hand centric as in most of his highlights, he drives to the left and uses his left hand to finish at the rim even when it would make more sense to use his right hand.

Shannon may remind many Texas Tech fans of former forward Martin Zeno, and not just because he is a lefty.  Both Shannon and Zeno (who starred for the Red Raiders from 2004-2008) are lanky players with excellent wing spans and a nose for getting to the rim.  But Shannon looks to be more explosive with his finishes as he is a terror when attacking the rim where he loves to finish with malicious intent.

More from Wreck'Em Red

He will have to undergo a significant rebuilding of his jump shot.  Currently, he brings his shot from near his mid-section in a motion that would be easily disrupted by collegiate defenders with quick hands or long arms.  (it looks similar to the jumper of former NBA star Shawn Marion, and that’s not a good thing.)  Fortunately, we have seen players such as Zhaire Smith, Jarrett Culver and Davide Moretti improve their shots tremendously during their time under the current Texas Tech staff.

Looking ahead to next year’s roster, Tech should be loaded with talent at the shooting guard and small forward positions.  With Moretti, Kyler Edwards and DeShawn Corprew set to return and the addition of Ramsey and 2019 signee Kevin McCullar Jr. (who has been on campus since January), the Red Raiders will have plenty of options for scoring on the wing.

The two areas of need remain point guard (though Moretti could play that position if needed but it would be ideal to keep him off the ball and free him up for open jump shots) and center/forward.  It is  believed that Beard will once again be in the market for at least one graduate transfer this summer because currently, there are no juniors on the roster leaving next year’s team devoid of the senior leadership that Beard greatly values.

Tech actually had an open scholarship this season but the addition of Shannon means all six spots expected to be open next year are spoken for.  Thus, if a graduate transfer (or two) is to be added, it would almost certainly mean a player in the current roster would depart.

Many fans have been paying close attention to the tenuous situation regarding 2018’s top signee Khavon Moore.  The highest-rated player to ever sign with Texas Tech when he arrived on campus, Moore has played only two minutes this season as he works his way back from a broken leg suffered in January of 2018.

However, he has indicated on Twitter that he feels like he is healthy enough to play and is waiting for his opportunity.  Those comments did not sit well with Beard and soon thereafter, it was announced that Moore would not play again this year and would not travel with team and would pursue a medical redshirt.  Now, it is fair to wonder if he has a future in Lubbock.

Another player that might be better suited elsewhere is freshman forward Josh Mballa.  He has seen action in only 15 games this year and is averaging just 3.7 minutes per appearance.  The native of France is a physical specimen in the mold of Norense Odiase but his basketball skills are a long way from being Big 12 ready.

The worst-case scenario from a roster movement perspective would be Davide Moretti leaving to play professional basketball in Europe, which is a legitimate option.  Named to the All-Big 12 third-team, the sophomore is having a break-out year with nearly 12 points per game.  But his father is a head coach in the Italian professional league and many speculate that Tech’s second-leading scorer would have multiple opportunities to play overseas should he decide to monetize his talents.

How Texas Tech captured Big 12 title. dark. Next

But the good news is that Chris Beard has already proven that he can reload a roster.  And the addition of Terrence Shannon Jr. is further proof that the Texas Tech basketball program is one of the hottest up-and-coming programs in the nation.