Texas Tech has only three games before the Battle 4 Atlantis
One way that just about every major conference team now gets several quality opponents on its non-con schedule is by playing in an early-season tournament or multi-team event. In recent years, Tech has played in the Maui Invitational, the Las Vegas Invitational, and the Hall of Fame Classic.
This year, it will be the Battle 4 Atlantis where Tech will be tested early in the season. In fact, the Red Raiders will have only three games to prepare for this event before taking on Villanova in the first game in the Bahamas on November 22.
That means that McCasland and his roster featuring seven players who were added to the program this offseason will have to gel in a hurry. Of course, the entire team will be in for a learning curve given the coaching change making this early-season event all the more intriguing.
Will the Red Raiders have enough time to work out the kinks before being part of a super-competitive field at the Atlantis resort? Including Villanova, Tech could face the likes of Arkansas, Michigan, North Carolina, Memphis, Stanford, and Northern Iowa.
Remember that the three games Tech will play in the Bahamas will be important for the team’s hopes of reaching the NCAA Tournament. They will be three of the best resume-building opportunities this year’s team will have and with no Big 12/SEC Challenge opponent on the docket this year, there will be one less high-quality non-con opponent to potentially score a meaningful win over.
Last year, in the Maui Invitational, Tech struggled going just 1-2. Losing the opening game to No. 10 Creighton before topping a woeful Louisville team, Tech would then fall to Ohio State.
That event gave us the first sign that something was amiss with last year’s team and soon thereafter, rumors about drama within the program, drama that happened away from the court in Maui, began to surface. Little did we know that what happened in Hawaii was going to be a harbinger of what was to come as the program fell apart last season due to the lack of guidance from Adams.
This year, there likely won’t be any off-court drama involving McCasland in the Bahamas. But what will be similar will be that this multi-team event will be the first test of the season. It’s just worrisome that there are only three games of preparation beforehand.