The new Coach Knight brought back the player introductions of old, by turning the lights off and playing an intro highlight video that had the crowd out of their seats before tip-off.
"My whole goal is to get the fans to enjoy the game," said Pat Knight. "I don't care if only 10 people show up. I want them to be the loudest 10 people. I picked out both [intro songs]. I picked out Rocky. And House of Pain Jump Around. You can't help but to get going with that song.
The excitement in the air led to a determined effort by the players, giving Coach Pat Knight his win as head coach at Texas Tech.
"[The intro] felt great," said Alan Voskuil. "It got the crowd into it. I love Pat. He is the one who recruited me and it felt good to get this win and do something for him for once."
Kansas State, currently sitting in first place in the Big 12 and ranked 22nd in the nation, came into the game with a 7-1 conference record and were looking to continue their stellar play as of late. The Wildcats had won 8 of their last 9 games coming into tonight's contest.
The Red Raiders, determined to keep their unbeaten record at home, came out firing.
Led by junior sharp shooter Alan Voskuil, who had 19 first half points and shot a perfect 4-4 from behind the arc, Texas Tech built a 40-28 halftime lead.
Texas Tech extended their lead to 22 points with 13:55 left in the second half, but the Wildcats would not go away quietly.
Led by superstars Michael Beasley and Bill walker, Kansas State cut the Red Raider lead to 4 points with 5:33 remaining but would get no closer.
"We just wanted to make it hard on them and make it uncomfortable for them," said Coach Knight. "When you have 2 NBA players on your team, they're going to make a run. In the huddle the players were frustrated and I told them ‘that kid could be the #1 pick in the draft, don't worry about it.'"
Bill Walker and Michael Beasley finished with 27 and 22 points respectively.
Martin Zeno made several key free throws to close out the game, giving Texas Tech their 3rd win of the season over a ranked opponent.
Martin Zeno, who was fighting off a flu, ended the game with 16 points.
"I didn't think he was going to play today," explained Coach Knight. "I was sitting here all day worried about not having Zeno for K-State. The poor kid was on an IV all the way up until warm-ups."
With the win over the Wildcats, Texas Tech remains unbeaten at home and is sitting at 4-5 in conference play.
Next up for Texas Tech is a home game against the Oklahoma Sooners on Saturday, February 16th.