Top recruit Nimari Burnett leaving Texas Tech after 12 games

NCAA

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP)Texas Tech freshman Nimari Burnett, the program’s first McDonald’s All-American, is leaving the program just 12 games into his career.

Coach Chris Beard made the announcement Thursday, two days after Burnett played a season-low six minutes in the No. 18 Red Raiders’ 82-71 victory over Kansas State.

Burnett, a high school standout in Chicago and consensus top 30 recruit nationally, never cracked the starting lineup in a crowded backcourt while averaging 5.3 points.

Burnett was struggling offensively, shooting 28% from the field and just 17% from 3-point range. The guard’s best showings came in consecutive games before the start of Big 12 play, when he had 12 points against Grambling State and 10 against Abilene Christian.

Texas Tech’s competition in the backcourt grew with the addition of Georgetown transfer Mac McClung, the team’s leading scorer. Burnett also has been competing for playing time with fellow freshman Micah Peavy, sophomores Terrence Shannon Jr. and Kevin McCullar and junior Kyler Edwards.

More AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25

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