I have said it before, and I will say it again. It is no secret that Mark Adams is filling his staff up with the best of the best. I am here to continue with the rest of the amazing staff for the Texas Tech men’s basketball program.
Sean Sutton – Advisor to the Head Coach / Player Development
Sean Sutton has been a HUGE member of the Texas Tech basketball program in his past four seasons. Sutton has had 24 years of coaching experience, along with his father and brother. The father-son trio has been the most successful combination in NCAA history.
Over the past four seasons with the Red Raiders, Sutton has been the advisor to the head coach. He also has been responsible for player development. Over his career, he has coached or played with 25 NBA players. Sutton has been to 15 NCAA tournaments, nine Sweet 16’s, five NITs, five NCAA Elite Eights, and three Final Fours over his career as a student-athlete or coach.
Sean Sutton brings another set of sharp eyes to see which players are improving on certain aspects and brings a ton of extra skill to these players. Sutton can watch these players grow while also helping them excel in their overall gameplay.
Rick Cooper – Chief of Staff
Rick Cooper was brought onto Mark Adams coaching staff in May, following being the athletic director at Wayland Baptist University since 2014. Before being the athletic director, Cooper was also the head coach at WBU and West Texas A&M!
During his time as head coach, he stacked up 546 victories at both Universities. Cooper had a 152-47 record at WBU and a 394-195 record at WT, earning the all-time winning coach in both programs’ history. WT won the Lone Star Conference Championships under his leadership. His team also advanced to 10 NCAA National Tournaments and an Elite Eight appearance.
He was selected as the LSC Coach of the Year six times, tabbed as the South Central Region Coach of the Year two times, and was the 2011 Clarence Gaines National Division II Coach of the Year. He was also named 2017-2018 Sooner Athletic Conference Athletics Director of the Year.
Cooper brings extreme talent to the coaching staff and his ability to handle anything that comes his way. He and Adams have built a lot of trust in each other and know how to build a successful program together. I am excited to see our team grow with Cooper on the coaching roster.
Tennessee Owens – Graduate Assistant
Tennessee Owens joins the staff as a graduate assistant, after being a former New Mexico State guard! Owens easily became a fan favorite for the Aggies in his two seasons playing for New Mexico State. He averaged 2.1 points in 4.2 minutes per contest while shooting 41.7 percent from behind the arc.
Owen’s role as a graduate assistant includes working out certain players, studying film, and scouting. I believe Owens brings a high basketball IQ as a graduate assistant because he is the son of a professional coach and has seen the game at many different levels. He is fresh off the court as well, so he has that energetic, fresh, young mind like a lot of our current athletes. Owen’s can be a lot like Darryl Dora, in the role of being someone that these players can relate to and come to whenever.
Tyson Batiste – Graduate Assistant
Tyson Batiste joins our coaching staff as a graduate assistant after being a GA at Arkansas for a year. Before becoming a GA, Batiste played three seasons at Central Connecticut and was a captain for two years. He played his final season (19-20) as a graduate transfer at The Citadel where he was also a team captain. Batiste finished 40th in NCAA in assists per game (5.3) and fourth on the Bulldogs’ single-season list for assists (160).
Batiste brings an incredible skill set to the Red Raiders as a graduate assistant. His roles will include film study, workouts with players, scouting during the season, etc. He will be key in helping our players grow in their ability to get assists. I believe Batiste will also serve as a big brother-type role to these players, being able to relate to them and build on the culture of Texas Tech.
Kavin Gilder-Tilbury – Graduate Assistant
Kavin Gilder-Tilbury joins us fresh off playing for the number one league in Germany! Gilder-Tilbury was on fire playing in the Germany league ranking up career-high points, steals, assists, and rebounds. Before playing in the Germany league, he played for Texas State and easily was known as a key player for the Bobcats, again setting career highs every season all around the board.
Gilder-Tilbury brings a range of skills to the table as a graduate assistant. He had a strong ability to put points on the board, rebound, assist, and steal the ball. He will be able to help the players all around in every skill set. His role as a graduate assistant is working players out one-on-one, studying film, and scouting during the season.
Ty Nurse – Graduate Assistant
Ty Nurse returns to Lubbock as a graduate assistant after being a GA at Creighton. Nurse played for Texas Tech back in 2011-2013. In July 2014, Nurse signed with Uni Baskets Paderborn and later in 2016 signed with Halifax Hurricanes. From his time at Texas Tech and internationally, he was a strong player overall in all areas of gameplay.
Nurse brings talent from the college and international level and will be a key member in our players’ development. His role also includes film study, scouting, and player workouts. We will be able to see Nurse bring in many different skills and experiences to help our program succeed.
As we have noticed from most coaches on the staff, player development is KEY, and these graduate assistants bring a lot of different skills and strengths when it comes to player development. I am excited to see what these four graduate assistants produce from our current players and watching everyone grow, coaches and players.