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The story behind Texas Tech’s 4 to 1 philosophy

LUBBOCK, Tex. — You may have heard or seen tweets about Texas Tech’s 4 to 1 philosophy.  If you’re like most people, you may not quite understand it.

In the story above from 2017, reporter Andrew Doak explained exactly what it means and why Tech lives by it.  The 4 to 1 phrase that Beard uses that he took from his mentor Bob Knight that has sold his players on his vision for this team.

“It means being more mentally tough than physically tough,” Tech guard Keenan Evans said at the time.

“The mental is to the physical, as four is to one,” Texas Tech Head Coach Chris Beard said. “The first time I heard that from coach I really believed it.”

It’s that same psychological edge that he hopes his team takes flight with, that has NBA players galore.

“In the Big 12, everyone has physical talent to compete, but it’s the teams that have the mental toughness to do it, in a 31 game schedule that will give yourself a chance.” Beard said.

“He’s going to say, it’s going to be tough,” former Texas Tech head coach Bob Knight said. “We’re going to work to be the best team we can be.”

However, 4 to 1 is not just a microcosm of coach Knight’s teaching. Every road game this team takes a 2×4 with them. It’s something Beard said he learned from one of his favorite coaches, Nick Saban.

What that piece of wood represents is being able to play with distractions. To be mentally tougher than your surroundings. Beard explained that if you were to put a piece of wood on the ground and ask some to walk across it, it would be a simple task. However, if you were to place that piece of wood in the rafters and ask someone to complete the same task, not many people would be likely to do it, even though nothing has changed but the environment.

“I think about it with road games. It’s the same game, it’s just the crowd, atmosphere. You have to eliminate that,” Beard said.