About Staking the Plains

The Morning Stake | 2022.06.13

Basketball projections.

Big 12

Dallas Morning News’ Chuck Carlton writes about Cincinnati, Houston, and Central Florida all confirming that they have confirmed that they will be part of the 2023 season, so like NEXT YEAR! And BYU wasn’t tied to a conference, so they’ll be here in the Big 12 in 2023 as well. With Texas and Oklahoma not slated to leave until 2025, this is going to be really interesting and I absolutely love the game of chicken that Texas and Oklahoma are playing with the Big 12 and hope the Big 12 doesn’t budge a damn inch.

The question is whether the Longhorns and Sooners will depart the Big 12 before June 30, 2025. At Big 12 spring meetings last week, school officials for both schools indicated they still focused on the 2025 date.

“That’s the working assumption,” Texas President Jay Hartzell said last week at Big 12 spring meetings. “Obviously the Big 12 is in leadership transition so it’s probably not the time to try to have hard conversations around that anyway. But we’re working around ‘25 as the standard model.”

Leaving early would be complicated with the early exit fee estimated at a reported $76 million. ESPN may want the two schools to leave early and join the SEC but not before 2024, when CBS still has its pick of the SEC’s top TV games. And Fox wouldn’t want to see Texas and OU leave early, at least not without some compensation.


CBS Sports’ David Cobb ranks the top 25 transfers for 2022 and he has Fardaws Aimaq as the 5th best transfer.

Aimaq averaged 18.9 points and 13.6 rebounds for a 20-12 Utah Valley team in 2021-22, and he began flashing his outside shot by hitting 43.5% of his 46 attempts from 3-point range. He was also a two-time WAC Defensive Player of the Year, which makes him a perfect fit for Texas Tech’s gritty defensive system under coach Mark Adams. His all-around game should make him an impact player for one of the Big 12’s top programs.

Terrence Shannon, Jr. is 6th and Kevin McCullar is 19th. I’ve had this thought rolling in my head for a while, but when D’Maurian Williams, the transfer from Gardner Webb, transferred to Texas Tech, it certainly didn’t have the fanfare of other transfers I immediately thought he was a Kevin McCullar starter-kit as I thought that McCullar would be NBA bound. Williams led the Runnin’ Bulldogs with 14.5 points a game, 4.6 boards, 2.5 assists, while shooting 41% from the floor and 39% from deep. He didn’t do that against Big 12 competition, but would it surprise me if Williams was a guy that average 10 points a game because he can shoot so well and now that Steve Green is on board, this makes this that more interesting to me.

ESPN’s Jeff Borzello has his updated top 25 and after being left out the last time, he now has Texas Tech sitting 22nd.

Texas Tech was the first team left out of the top 25 last month, but then the Red Raiders went out and landed five-star recruit Elijah Fisher — who also reclassified into the 2022 class and will suit up for Tech next season. We’ll project him in the starting lineup for now, but Mark Adams could also opt for a bit more experience with Clarence Nadolny or more shooting with Gardner-Webb transfer D’Maurian Williams. Reclassified prospects often take more time to adapt to the college game, but Fisher turned 18 in January and also suited up for Canada’s U19 team. With Mylik Wilson entering the portal, however, the major question centers around the point guard spot. De’Vion Harmon will likely be the primary ball handler, but he has been more of a scorer first throughout his college career. Trust in Adams, though.

I don’t know if I agree with this projected starting 5, but I like the discussion point.

Projected starting lineup:

De’Vion Harmon (10.8 PPG at Oregon)
Jaylon Tyson (1.8 PPG at Texas)
Elijah Fisher (five-star)
Kevin Obanor (10.0 PPG)
Fardaws Aimaq (18.9 PPG at Utah Valley)

I definitely think that Tyson, Obanor, and Aimaq will start, while after that I’m not sure, but wouldn’t be against Williams because he can shoot and Green needs shooters, which means that I don’t think that Fisher starts.


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