Robert Jennings enters transfer portal leaving another hole in the paint for Texas Tech

Robert Jennings has entered the transfer portal after making significant strides in the 2023-24 season.

Texas v Texas Tech
Texas v Texas Tech / John E. Moore III/GettyImages

Saturday, it was reported by multiple outlets that Texas Tech sophomore forward Robert Jennings has put his name into the transfer portal for the second year in a row. Assuming he does find greener pastures this time, Grant McCasland and Co. will have another significant hole to fill in the paint this offseason.

This season, Jennings appeared in 31 of Tech's 34 games. Averaging 12.3 minutes per game, he posted 4.4 points and 3.3 rebounds per contest.

While his statistical improvements were modest over last year when he posted 2.7 points and 1.9 rebounds per game, at the end of the season, Jennings looked like he had turned a corner.

After being nothing more than a spare part early in the season, Jennings was thrust into the starting lineup in February after Warren Washington went down with a foot injury suffered against Kansas.

From February 17 through the end of the season, Jennings would make all but one start in Washington's place. During that span, he averaged 19 minutes, 6.7 points, and 5.2 rebounds per game.

In that stretch, he put up 13 points and five rebounds on the road at Iowa State and 10 points and seven rebounds against BYU in the Big 12 Tournament quarterfinal win. Along the way, he helped the Red Raiders survive without Washington and reach the NCAA Tournament.

However, Jennings seems to have a limited ceiling as a player. At only 6-foot-7, he's going to give up significant height to other post players almost every game.

What's more, he lacks a true offensive game. Unable to create his own offense because he lacks the ball-handling and shooting abilities required to do so, he relies on dirty work and on his teammates to get his points.

While there will always be room for players who are willing to do the dirty work on the court, ideally, it would be preferable for a player with Jenning's game to be a couple of inches taller and about 20 pounds heavier than the Desoto, Texas native is.

We saw his limitations in the NCAA Tournament first-round loss to NC State when he was unable to match up with the Wolfpack's 6-foot-9, 270-plus-pound tank DJ Burns. That day, Jennings was incapable of providing much resistance in the lane as the Red Raiders were dominated down low.

Still, with Jennings in the portal, Tech is now short on post players given that Washington has exhausted his eligibility. Thus, one priority for Grant McCasland this offseason will be finding big men to go to battle in the lane.

Jennings wasn't ever likely to be a star for the Red Raiders but he was a useable piece for the program. He is a player that can contribute to winning teams and he leaves a significant hole in the Red Raider roster next to the hole that Washington's graduation had already left.

There are now at least six open scholarships for the Tech coaching staff to fill. That means the upcoming days and weeks will be critical for McCasland and Co. as they again have to rebuild their roster from almost the ground up.