Excitement was in the air on Tuesday afternoon when Tubby Smith was formally introduced as the new head basketball coach at Texas Tech.
Interim President Lawrence Schovanec said Tubby Smith’s record of success as a head basketball coach speaks for itself.
“He’s an educator who cares deeply about his student-athletes and developing them for success beyond basketball,” Schovanec said. “I have no doubt that he will, as we say here at Texas Tech, build fearless champions.”
Smith agreed to a six-year contract with Texas Tech, which will make him the 16th head basketball coach in school history.
With 22 years of head coaching experience under his belt, Tubby Smith said he believes in the future and success of the Red Raider basketball program.
“We’re familiar with the area, and we know the potential here,” Smith said. “All these things come together to form the opinion that we can win here, and that’s why we’re excited about this opportunity.”
Smith said one of his goals is to build the Texas Tech basketball program into one of the top programs in the country.
“That’s not going to be easy, and it’s going to take hard work,” he said. “I think the identity and the talent that we have here is a good start.”
“I’m hearing nothing but great things about these guys and the energy and effort that they were putting in, “ Smith said. “Especially the leadership that you had with Chris Walker; I know we can build on that.”
Throughout the duration of his time spent coaching, Tubby Smith obtained a National Championship at Kentucky, made four Elite Eight appearances, nine Sweet Sixteen appearances, and 17 trips to the NCAA Tournament.
His most recent coaching position was at Minnesota, where he spent six successful years.
Smith and his wife, Donna, said they were sold on Texas Tech almost immediately after being contacted by Kirby Hocutt.
“I feel like I have a lot to offer and a lot of energy and good years left in me to coach,” Smith said. “It’s really wonderful being a part of the Lubbock community and the Texas Tech University family.”