California Love: TCU headed to San Diego as an 9th seed in NCAA tournament

TCU+basketball+celebrates+after+hearing+their+name+called+as+a+9th+seed+in+the+2022+NCAA+tournament.+%28Photo+courtesy+of+gofrogs.com%29

TCU basketball celebrates after hearing their name called as a 9th seed in the 2022 NCAA tournament. (Photo courtesy of gofrogs.com)

By Colin Post

Five months ago, Mike Miles made it clear that this TCU team was different.

“We’re a lot better, I feel like this team is more focused, more focused on the main goal, and that’s winning,” Miles said on Nov. 15.

At that point, the Frogs were just 2-0 with wins over only weak nonconference opponents, and there was no real evidence that this TCU team would build on their 12-14 record from 2021.

But Miles was right.

For just the second time since 1998, TCU basketball was selected for the NCAA tournament on Sunday afternoon, entering as an 9th seed.

“Me and him [Eddie Lampkin] came in here with a plan to get this team to the tournament,” Miles said. “That’s what we do, but we, obviously couldn’t do it without the help of our teammates.”

Part of the South region, the Frogs will take on 8th seed Seton Hall on Friday in San Diego, California, at a time to be determined.

After finishing 20-12 this season, TCU makes the NCAA tournament for just the 9th time in school history and the 2nd time under head coach Jamie Dixon.

“We’ve got to raise our standard. We’ve got to raise our bar,” Dixon said of his message to the team.

The Frogs were last in the NCAA tournament in 2018, where they fell to Syracuse 57-52 in their first game.

TCU set program records over the course of this year with five ranked wins and eight Quad 1 wins. They also tied or their best Big 12 regular season finish (5th) and tournament finish (semifinals).

On Thursday, the Frogs came back from a 20-point deficit to beat No. 22 Texas 65-60 in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 tournament.

Following the tournament, Miles became the first Frog to make the Big 12 tournament All-Tournament team after averaging 13 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 3 assists in the two games.

“Our ceiling is, obviously, we want to win a championship, but it starts with Seton Hall,” Miles said. “We want to do something that’s never been done at this school.”

Looking for their first NCAA tournament win since 1987, TCU will depart as a team for San Diego this Wednesday.