SAN DIEGO– Texas Tech safety Tanner Jacobson will get the start in his final football game of the foreseeable future Monday in the Holiday Bowl. Safeties coach Trey Haverty said so after the team’s workout Friday night at UC-San Diego.
The freshman from Southlake Carroll is leaving the program at mid-term for a two-year Mormon mission toBolivia.
“He’s a leader,” Haverty said. “Tanner’s a guy in the locker room that’s always having positive feedback. It’s what you want as a coach is voices like your own in the locker room, and he’s one of those.
“We’re going to miss him, and hopefully in two years he comes back and we get him back older and mature. But he’s definitely going to be missed, because every kid on this team loves him, including the coaches.”
The starting strong safety became a week-to-week call after J.J. Gaines suffered a season-ending shoulder injury six games into the season. Jacobson and Keenon Ward have made three starts apiece at that spot, and Austin Stewart one.
Jacobson was a walk-on true freshman whom co-offensive coordinator Mike Smith predicted in the summer would make an impact. He cracked the starting lineup in September and has 40 tackles.
Haverty said coaches weren’t thinking about Jacobson leaving the program so soon while they were recruiting him.
“We found out when he found out, which was during bowl practices,” Haverty said. “We wish him the best and we’ll miss him, but his beliefs and stuff like that is obviously more important than a football game.”