The Texas Tech coaching staff capped off their recruiting review dinner tour with their fourth and final stop Monday night at the Midland Center in Midland.
Texas Country singer-songwriter and Texas Tech alum Josh Abbott helped set the stage in West Texas with his song “Victory Bells,” a rendition of the Texas Tech fight song.
“It’s a whole new atmosphere,” Tech alumnus Steven Garcia said. “It seemed like the last few years Tech got a little lackluster, and of course the fans weren’t as excited. No one was excited about going to the games. I think I missed more games this last season, unfortunately, than I missed in the last 20 years.”
The majority of the more than 700 Red Raider fans in attendance rose to their feet to take part in the excitement that continues to build around the Texas Tech football program, in this new era of Red Raiders football.
Head coach Kliff Kingsbury introduced each member of his staff, six of whom played for Texas Tech, before turning the microphone over for his coordinators to review the recruits coming in on each side of the ball.
“You guys should be proud of the guys that are coming back to Lubbock,” defensive coordinator Matt Wallerstedt said of the staff Kingsbury has put together. “The boys are definitely back in town.”
Wallerstedt comically presented an anecdote telling how he and his defensive staff guarded all the exits at various high schools across the country, shirtless, to literally fight off other schools for recruits.
“We rolled our sleeves up and went to war for a month and a half, and here’s the guys we put together that will be leaders of our future,” Wallerstedt said. “These are guys that we’re going to build this thing around, guys that will go to class, guys that will get their degree, guys that are going to be ambassadors of Texas Tech and guys that will be leaders in the locker room for us.”
His electric personality brought hundreds to their feet and applause from everyone.
“To see a defensive coordinator like that makes you feel good about what the future is going to bring,” Garcia said. “They bring in the kids that want to work, that want to be on the field, and, as fans, we can’t ask for more than that.”
The Red Raiders are hoping to develop more of an already large presence in the Midland-Odessa area as plans were announced to hold a scrimmage at Grande Communications Stadium in Midland on April 6.
“These guys bring a lot of energy to the table,” Texas Tech alum Joe Brosig said. “There are a lot of younger guys with a lot of energy and I think that will go over real well with the young kids and recruits. I think they’ll take a lot from that energy and show it on the field.”
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