The Texas Tech University Red raiders basketball team competes in the highly competitive Big 12 Conference alongside perennial powerhouse programs like the University of Kansas and the University of Texas. While the Big 12 is predominately known around the country as a football conference the grouping of 12 teams from seven states (Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Texas) consistently sends 5 or 6 teams to the NCAA Tournament every March. In several respects the success the Big 12 has in football (having appeared in 7 of the last 10 national championship games) overshadows the accomplishments on the hardwood where every season teams such as the Texas Tech Red Raiders step-up and make a significant impact on the school basketball landscape.
Located in the West Texas city of Lubbock the Texas Tech Red Raiders and their 30, 000 students (24, 000 undergraduate and 6, 000 graduate) are usually related to their football program regardless of the fact that the basketball has received a similar level of success. Through the years the process have won 5 conference tournaments and 6 regular season championships during their time in the now defunct Southwest Conference (dissolved in-may, 1996). The Texas Tech program has an impressive 14 NCAA Tournament appearances to its credit and it has had the distinction of sending about a dozen players on to play professional excellence in the NBA.