Kliff Kingsbury and Eric Morris have been comparing notes and swapping ideas at least as far back as 2010. They’ve developed a tight bond, even if their careers as Texas Tech players didn’t overlap.
So neither expects much to change this season with Morris’ promotion from Tech co-offensive coordinator to offensive coordinator.
“We’ve done the same thing since I was a graduate assistant at Houston,” Morris said. “He does his entire script for the week. I do my whole entire script for a week, and we’ll meet on it and see what ideas we like and don’t like and discuss it together.
“We’ve been doing that for a long time together.”
The only difference, Morris said, is Sonny Cumbie was in on the discussions last year. In Kingsbury’s first season as Tech head coach, Morris and Cumbie shared co-offensive coordinator duties, Morris coached inside receivers and Cumbie took outside receivers.
When Cumbie left in December to join the TCU staff, Kingsbury made Morris offensive coordinator and receivers coach. Kingsbury still has final say and signals in plays.
Kingsbury said there’s little different about how the offensive staff prepares.
“It didn’t affect it,” he said. “I put a lot of the scripting, a lot of things of that nature, on myself, so it didn’t affect the day-to-day. It put more guys (receivers) in coach Morris’ room. That’s the only change.”
Kingsbury said it was much more significant to the Red Raiders’ operation that he hired a full-time special teams coach, Darrin Chiaverini from Riverside (Calif.) City College, to fill the vacancy left by Cumbie’s departure.
Kingsbury’s Tech playing career ended in 2002, and Morris came aboard as a slot receiver and return man in 2004. They were on the same offensive staff together for two years at Houston — in 2010, when Morris was a quality control coach and Kingsbury the quarterbacks coach and in 2011, when Morris was a graduate assistant and Kingsbury the co-offensive coordinator.
“Year in and year out, we think alike and become more and more comfortable with each other,” Morris said, “throwing ideas at each other and constantly talking about what we like during games. He’s obviously the primary play caller, but gets more and more comfortable with me each and every year.”
Kingsbury said it was “a smooth transition” in the spring. The most practical change might be that Morris coaches all four receiver positions now instead of two.
Game day will remain unchanged with Morris upstairs in the booth and linked up with Kingsbury on headsets, same as last season.
“He gives me, as far as us doing the whole recruiting process, I do all the organization and say-so on our offensive recruiting, which is a little bit different for me now and then,” Morris said. “But yeah, most of the same stuff that I’ve been doing with him for a long time is what I still do now.”
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