By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech men's basketball team officially kicked off its third season under the direction of head coach John Pelphrey with its first team practice of the 2021-22 campaign Tuesday evening.
The Golden Eagles head into the new year riding some momentum after claiming back-to-back wins to close out the 2020-21 season. Tech took down in-state rival Austin Peay, 81-76, and followed it up with a great 71-61 victory over long-time foe Murray State in the season finale.
The roster for the purple and gold features 10 familiar faces, led by three-time, All-Ohio Valley Conference Second Team selection Jr. Clay. Joining the junior guard and the other Tech returners are seven newcomers to this season's squad, including five transfers from Division I institutions and two freshmen.
Among the additions to the roster are sophomore guard Diante Wood by way of Alabama and Jacksonville, sophomore forward Daniel Ramsey by way of Xavier, junior forward Mamoudou Diarra by way of Cincinnati, sophomore guard Caleb Christopher by way of Arizona State, and graduate guard John Pettway by way of South Alabama. Freshman forward Isaiah Nelson-Ododa joins the Golden Eagles from Winder, Ga. while rookie guard Bailey Gilliam, a walk-on that served as a manager for the purple and gold last season, joins as a local Cookeville product.
Fans can get a first glimpse of the 2021-22 Golden Eagles Thursday, Oct. 28 when they host Berea in an exhibition contest in the Hooper Eblen Center as part of Purple Palooza. Tech will officially kick off the season with its season opener at Memphis on Tuesday, Nov. 9 and return to Cookeville for its home opener on Sunday, Nov. 14 against Oakwood.
Season tickets for Tennessee Tech men's basketball are now on sale. To order, call (931) 372-3940, visit the Hooper Eblen Center ticket office or visit TTUSports.com.
Photo by Thomas Corhern