Change atop any organizational structure is almost always certain to bring about uncertainty. For the Texas Tech basketball program, the departure of former head coach Chris Beard left many wondering what next year’s roster will look like as three players from the 2020-21 team (Kyler Edwards, Marcus Santos-Silva, and Micah Peavy) almost immediately entered the transfer portal once Beard’s plane left for Austin.
What’s more another key member of the Red Raiders, Kevin McCullar Jr., Tweeted on the day Beard left that he had decisions to make. Well, now that associate head coach Mark Adams has been given the reins of the program on a permanent basis, it appears McCullar’s decision has been made. He’s staying in Lubbock.
McCullar Tweeted his decision just moments after the announcement of Adams’ ascension to the throne was made known by college basketball insiders. That’s a huge win for Adamas and the Red Raiders.
You could make the case that McCullar was one of Tech’s two most important players this past season (along with leading scorer Mac McClung). That’s because he does a little bit of everything on the basketball court.
This past season, he was third on the team in scoring at 10.4 points per game. But he was also second in rebounding at 6.3 per game. What’s more, he led the team in defensive rating by allowing an estimate of 89.6 points per 100 possessions.
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A 6-foot-5 guard who can guard multiple positions on the court, the San Antonio native continues to improve as a player and he feels like he could be the type of winning component that is needed for success in the Big 12.
Retaining McCullar also keeps in the fold a key link to the culture that this program has developed over the past few seasons. Always willing to mix it up and do the dirty work that is required for winning, McCullar leads by example and that leadership will be all the more valuable during the transition to the Mark Adams era.
Certainly, there will be some turnover on the roster and we are yet to find out if the three Red Raiders in the transfer portal will return. But the hiring of Adams makes it more likely that they will.
Adams appears to be incredibly popular with his players, both current and former. During the hiring process, he received endorsements from the likes of Keenan Evans, Norense Odiase, and Tariq Owens.
Now, his first job as head coach may be to recruit back the key members of his roster who are on the fence about their future. He got off to a great start in that endeavor on Monday evening when McCullar decided to return for his third year.