Senior cornerbacks Cornelius Douglas and Eugene Neboh have run with Texas Tech's first-team defense throughout spring practice and the first two weeks of preseason workouts. The top backups, though, have been up for debate.
Redshirt freshman Jeremy Reynolds and junior-college transfer Bruce Jones have been as visible as any of the backup corners in August, and they were the only two Tech coach Tommy Tuberville mentioned when asked Friday who had stood out behind Douglas and Neboh.
“Jeremy Reynolds has come on pretty good,” Tuberville said. “Bruce Jones is a guy that’s got to come on for us. He’s got a great vertical leap. He just doesn’t know how to play against big receivers yet, like he’s seen against us.”
Reynolds is listed at 5-foot-9, 175 pounds, Jones at 5-7, 171. Both give up a lot of size when they line up against receivers such as Darrin Moore (6-4, 216) and Marcus Kennard (6-3, 203).
Tuberville said coaches are trying to emphasize to young cornerbacks that proper technique is a must for a corner to survive in the Big 12.
“You can’t go out there and freelance like you did in junior college, like you did in high school,” Tuberville said. “You’ve got to use your body. You’ve got to use your leverage. You’ve got to get a step on the receiver. You’ve got to be able to read routes.
“It’s awfully hard in this league to play corner. We’re fortunate we’ve got some guys with some talent now. We’ve got to get them up to speed on their technique and fundamentals.”