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Kingsbury says he 'didn't get many specifics' for why Mayfield left program

Tech coach caught off-guard by quarterback's departure

Posted: December 13, 2013 - 4:00pm  |  Updated: December 14, 2013 - 1:23am
Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury addressed on Friday the departure of freshman quarterback Baker Mayfield. (Stephen Spillman)  Stephen Spillman / AJ Media
Stephen Spillman / AJ Media
Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury addressed on Friday the departure of freshman quarterback Baker Mayfield. (Stephen Spillman)
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Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury says he had no indication that Baker Mayfield was disenchanted until shortly before the freshman quarterback left the team this week to pursue a transfer.

“I didn’t get many specifics for why he was leaving,” Kingsbury said Friday during a post-practice session with the media. “I just knew that he wanted to leave. We wanted him here. He knows that. He knows how I feel about him. But if he feels (leaving) is the best thing for him, then that’s what he needed to do.”

Mayfield started seven games this season for a 7-5 team, throwing for 2,315 yards and 12 touchdowns. He left the team Wednesday, telling media outlets in his hometown of Austin that he will seek a transfer.

There were no reports of Mayfield being unhappy until late Tuesday, and Kingsbury said Wednesday was the first he was aware of it.

Mayfield cited “miscommunication” with the coaching staff as a reason for his departure, which Kingsbury on Friday said “was news to me.”

“I couldn’t be a bigger fan of Baker Mayfield and will cheer him on wherever he ends up,” Kingsbury said, “and am proud of what he accomplished, winning Big 12 freshman of the year. That’s something that’s great for the entire program.”

Mayfield spent this season as a walk-on, but Kingsbury said the former Lake Travis standout was going to be put on scholarship.

Asked how the team took Mayfield’s leaving, Kingsbury said, “They’re a resilient group. Everybody liked Baker. Coaches liked Baker. But if he felt there was a better situation elsewhere, that’s what he needed to do.”

The departures of Mayfield and Clayton Nicholas, a redshirt freshman who had not been in the mix for playing time, leaves Tech with only Michael Brewer and Davis Webb as scholarship quarterbacks.

The Red Raiders are in position to add a third on national signing day, having a commitment from Whitehouse standout Patrick Mahomes.

Kingsbury said he will not look to add a second quarterback for the upcoming signing class.

“You’d like to have five (quarterbacks on scholarship),” Kingsbury said. “That’s the ideal number for what we do. But we’re happy with where we’re at, and we’ve done it with three before.”

The Red Raiders are getting ready to play No. 16 Arizona State (10-3) in the Holiday Bowl on Dec. 30 in San Diego, Calif. It’s unclear at the moment who would be an emergency, third-string quarterback behind Brewer and Webb.

Tech coaches took former Randall quarterback Collin Bowen as a preferred walk-on in the summer, but Bowen was moved to outside linebacker at midseason.

Kingsbury said he hasn’t decided whether Brewer or Webb will start against the Sun Devils. Mayfield started the first five games of the season, Webb the next five and Mayfield the last two.

Brewer played sparingly this season, largely because he suffered a back injury in the summer. Kingsbury has said he didn’t have time on a week-to-week basis in practice to get Brewer game ready, at least not to the extent that Mayfield and Webb already were prepared.

In the last two games, losses to Baylor and Texas, Brewer played and Webb didn’t. Kingsbury said that should not be taken as an indication that Webb had dropped to third on the depth chart.

“I thought he played great, and he didn’t drop back to third,” Kingsbury said. “We put Mike in to get him some reps and see where he’s at, really, after coming off that injury and that was late in game situations and we thought he could get some good reps.

“They’ve all completed great, all three of them throughout, and now we’re down to two and we’ll see how it shakes out moving forward.”


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As head coach he's supposed

As head coach he's supposed to know; certainly has enough paid staff around him to keep him informed.



He's suppose to know what? No, sometimes you can't know, especially when you're dealing with kids.


Run for the hills!!!!! Burn

Run for the hills!!!!! Burn Lubbock down!!!! A freshmen quarterback duo is transferring from a division 1 program over playing time!!! What a catastrophe, this has NEVER happened before in the history of the NCAA!... :)

Seriously guys we're fine. It's always disappointing to lose guys that were once wearing your colors (coaches like Cumbie included) but it's an inevitable part of athletics today. These kids have only 4 years to make a name for themselves and the modern day motto is "gratification now at all costs" it seems...Baker, good luck to you wherever you land. I hate to see you go, but good luck none the less.

Anytime you get competition, guys will leave. Anyone else remember a popular choice at QB by the name of Chris Todd????!!!! I remember hearing his name chanted in the student section to replace a struggling sophomore named Graham Harrell. Todd transferred to mediocrity at Auburn, Graham worked hard and stayed through to be the all-time great QB we've had here.

So don't panic Raider nation, we'll be fine. This is nothing new and DEFINITELY not something you should "dump the coach to not be a bad punch line" for. Our future is good, absorb the upcoming wrinkles, and it's smooth sailing ahead!

Wreck 'Em!


RedRaider07, from a 90 Tech

RedRaider07, from a 90 Tech grad thank you for an educated voice of reason. Too many folks on these comment pages lack any sense of reality.


Shawn7969 & hdbg62

According to both of you, Tech's AD should have known what Tubby was planning. Because, a good boss or leader always knows everything going on around them. BS Good luck Sonny whatever you end up.


It is not about last yearr

It is not about last year. Who started and who didn't. Its bout next year. Brewer was the one that missed the most time. None of which was his fault. Mayfield was hot early, then Webb for a few games, and the QB position came unrevelled at the end due to inexperience.

So this bowl game is the beginning of spring football. In my, view someone was going to leave eventually. If not this year then next. All three were to good to be stuck on the same team. I felt that Brewer looked the most confident at the end. He did not have happy feat and always went thru his progressions. So Mayfield made a decision. All 3 were never going to play at the same time.


Has anyone else heard

Has anyone else heard anything about Mayfield transferring to TCU? I read that Kingsbury said no other Big XII schools could receive his transfer, however, when I was on the TCU campus the buzz is about him coming in. Supposedly because Baker was never officially on scholarship, he is free to transfer wherever he chooses and that Tech can not limit him....I don't know for certain but does anyone else know of this being true?



Sorry to say once more this coach has not a clue or just does not know the rules. He can do as he wishes, plus he will most likely be able to get an expectation and not lose a year of eligibility if he wishes. Kliff biggest mistake was never offering him a scholarship. Since he was a non recruited walk on plus a non scholarship player he is free to do as he wishes. To bad kliff ego was to big not to offer mayfield one of those many non used scholarships. Just an offer would have forced mayfield to get a waiver. I have seen this before in tech over and over again ever since I graduated in 1965. Tech just trash winning coaches and hire loser after loser for years. Until they get another winning coach and it starts all over again. I am afraid we might even be worse than the late 50s and early 60s teams. I hope not but if a coach does not know simple easy to find rules like these. I might be old fashioned but head coach used to be the buck stops here type of people. Who always knew what was happening on their team. Most younger fans dont remember that good old days were 5,6 or 4 wins a year was a good year and a bowl game was a once or twice a decade occurrence until Dykes and Leach . Think about this from 1938 until 1998 we went to 23 bowl games in 60 years. People might have had their hopes up BCS game that Coach Leach. Take a look at what he did do 10 strait years of bowl games and some of techs best teams. Those 10 bowl games in those ten years equal almost 30% of all tech bowl game. Tech i am sorry will never ever be in a title game face it. Just look at Baylor 9-1 big 12 champs and the BCS gives the the chump game. While giving a OU the big money making game vs Alabama. Even when Baylor destroyed OU. Even if baylor went 10-0 they would be no better off and next year they can pick who ever they want no qualifiers.


sorry about all the typing mistakes its not as easy when you are almost 70. Dont call me a leacher i was a tech fan when 3 or 4 wins was a good year. Stayed a tech fan watching almost 25 losing seasons. You think this year was bad or tubby was bad you seen nothing.



Some of those post were out of line but this paper is doing it a disservice by not allowing criticisms of coaches and its selective rule enforcements Coaches should not be protected from non vulgar criticisms. Players should not be protected from non personal and insulting evaluations. They do get paid the big bucks for a reason and terms of use need to be enforced equally. Insults are uncalled far and childish no mater how funny or intelligent the person thanks they are. One thing i have learned in almost 70 years of life is that you can never judge a book by its cover.


I highly doubt that Kliff

I highly doubt that Kliff didn't know about the NCAA rule regarding transfers, and our future is very good. Everyone is saying don't judge a book by its cover, but that's EXACTLY what you guys are doing to Kliff right now....that statements a two-way street! He's had one year and not even a full year of recruiting to get the needed personnel.

"Tech i am sorry will never ever be in a title game face it. Just look at Baylor 9-1 big 12 champs and the BCS gives the the chump game. While giving a OU the big money making game vs Alabama. Even when Baylor destroyed OU. Even if baylor went 10-0 they would be no better off and next year they can pick who ever they want no qualifiers."

How much $$ is Baylor getting from their bowl game compared to ours? How much $$$ has Baylor cashed in on since RG3's Heisman campaign? Oh, and Baylor is poised to make a national title run next year....future looks good for them! Are you truly saying that BAYLOR can do it but we can't??? Really????

History is right though...mid major teams will never go to a conference title game (ahem OSU...Duke...K-State...) or win/compete for a national title (Florida pre-Spurrier, Florida State pre-Bowden, pre-Phil Oregon, etc. etc.).....



its not about the money that the school makes thats chump change and it gets spelt by the conformance. The NCAA and TV makes a killing. I am judging kliff by his results not looking though rose colour but as all my bosses judged me and yes i worked for the same chemical engineering for 35 years. We won 7 game against teams that went 2-8 and 1-9 in the big 12 and the only winning team we beat was texas state. He let the freshman of year go along with another qb. Leaving us with 2 maybe 1 QB for next year. He said mayfield would not be able to transfer to a big 12 team and he was wrong about that. So after starting this year with 2 qbs because of tubby now because of Kliff we have 2 or 1 for next year. That is not knowing his job and in the real world if i ever told my boss that i did not know what was happening or why people were leaving in my division i would be terminated without a question. Lucky kliff works for tech and they only fire winning coaches.


Baylor 2014

I think you would be right if the big 12 is as weak as it is this year. Thats a big if 2013 was the weakest big 12 in some time. Baylor got lucky in that i dont see UT OU OSU or KS Iowa tcu or maybe Wvu being as young and weak as they were this year.

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