Texas Tech basketball enters year five under Chris Beard, and it's shaping up to be a doozy. And by doozy, I mean that this season is going to be a wild ride so you might want to hold on tightly.

The preseason NIT event that Texas Tech was scheduled for has reportedly been canceled, along with every other ESPN-owned event. The college basketball world was the first to be majorly affected by the coronavirus pandemic last spring when the conference tournaments were all shuttered.

Now, the non-conference games in 2020 are in trouble of not happening.

With the uncertainty surrounding the non-conference schedule for the Red Raiders, the Big 12 has announced the home and home round-robin schedule that's been described as an 18-round fight by Chris Beard. If you want to have an NCAA tournament, you have to play some games.

The Red Raiders will open conference play in Lubbock against the Kansas Jayhawks on December 17th, 2020. The United Supermarkets Arena will not be full, but the home-court advantage will still very much be alive.

After that, the Red Raiders will head to Norman, Oklahoma to play the Sooners on December 22nd. Those two games are generally played in early January, but were moved up to allow more time for coronavirus schedule complications.

The toughest stretch of the schedule might be the final three games of the season, with Texas Tech heading to Lawrence, then Stillwater, before playing the Longhorns on Senior Night in Lubbock.

"Every season there are 10 teams that are NCAA tournament teams in the Big 12," Beard said on texastech.com. "It's a tough conference every year. This year is no different with teams that can make the Final Four and win the national championship. There is a standard of excellence in this conference. You're going against the best every night and always have to be ready to fight. It's tough and exciting. We intend to be a part of the fight to win the championship."

There will be one week left intentionally open after the end of the regular season in case makeup games needing to be played. The Big 12 Men's Basketball Tournament is scheduled for March 10th, 2021 through March 13th, 2021 in Kansas City.

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