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Texas Tech Faces Coaching Decision
March 14, 2013
Wendell Barnhouse is a nationally-known and respected columnist who has spent over 20 years covering collegiate athletics. He has reported from 25 Final Fours and more than three dozen bowl games and has written about the Big 12 and its schools since the conference's beginning. Barnhouse will be updating the Big 12 Insider on happenings and behind-the-scenes information about the conference.

Texas Tech's 91-63 loss to Kansas in the quarterfinals of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Men's Championship ended the Red Raiders' season. It's not clear yet if it ended Chris Walker's tenure as the team's coach.

Walker was named interim coach just days before practice started in October, taking over for Billy Gillispie who lasted one season as Texas Tech's coach. The Red Raiders were out-gunned from a talent stand point and finished 11-20 overall and 3-15 in Big 12 play.

The decision for athletic director Kirby Hocutt - give Walker the job full time or hire a new coach. If he chooses the latter route, it would be the school's third coach in three years.

"We've got to get this right," Hocutt told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal after Thursday's game. "We've got to take our time to get it right. That being said, we're going to look for the best candidate forward. That's a process I hope can move as expeditiously as possible. We're planning for that to be the case. Chris Walker will be a part of that process. He's earned the right to be a part of this. He's done an unbelievable job with a difficult set of circumstances.

"We'll move as quickly as we can. At the same time, there's probably never been a more important decision for Texas Tech basketball than what we face right now."

Hocutt didn't say what sort of time frame he has regarding the coaching decision but he said he wants to move "as expeditiously as possible."

Walker, who spent 17 years as an assistant coach before being named Texas Tech's interim head coach, can only wait for a decision.

"I've done all I can do to make the case," Walker said. "But, again, the one thing I am is very appreciative of the opportunity that I received from the university, and I'm very thankful for Kirby for having confidence in me and giving me a chance to prove myself as a coach.

"And, again, my goal was to make sure that I made those guys the best men, the best students and the best players they could be. And I honestly believe that we achieved all three of those things."

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