Texas Tech brought in 18 scholarship newcomers this season, about half of whom have already played. This is another installment of a series in which we update the progress of freshmen who are redshirting and some other players for whom Tech coaches have expectations.
Name: Trace Ellison
Class: True freshman
Position: Offensive guard
High school: Frisco Centennial
Texas Tech quarterback Davis Webb will transfer to Bowling Green to follow new Falcons head coach Mike Jinks, the Toledo Blade reported Saturday.
Webb has 46 career touchdown passes and a Holiday Bowl offensive outstanding player award, but lost the quarterback job to Patrick Mahomes II, who has started the Red Raiders’ last 16 games.
The Blade did not name or quote any sources.
Tech has not allowed Webb to do media interviews all season, most recently Friday, when requests for him were declined.
Texas Tech defensive coordinator David Gibbs, never one to not be candid, summed up the win-now nature of coaching college football in the current landscape.
On Friday, Gibbs praised his three former assistants who were fired two weeks ago, while acknowledging they were easier for Texas Tech to sacrifice than he is.
“Those three dudes are good football coaches. I’d hire them all again,” Gibbs said of Mike Smith, Kevin Curtis and Trey Haverty.
Jinks' hiring, three firings alter players' outlook
Texas Tech running back Justin Stockton felt a little odd Thursday going through a football practice without Mike Jinks nearby.
For most of Stockton’s high school career and all of his college career, Jinks was there to tell him when he messed up — and congratulate him for all the big plays he made.
Just the same, Stockton said he’s happy and proud for Jinks taking the next step in his coaching career. Earlier this week, Mid-American Conference champion Bowling Green hired the Red Raiders’ running backs coach to be the Falcons’ head coach.
Texas Tech finished second in the FBS in scoring during the just-completed regular season, with a resurgent rushing game playing a part.
Le’Raven Clark and DeAndre Washington reaped the benefits.
The two fifth-year seniors were named first-team all-Big 12 on the team picked by the league’s head coaches and released Wednesday by the conference office. Jakeem Grant made the second team at two positions.
Texas and Arkansas fans combined to set a Texas Bowl attendance record last year with the biggest crowd in the game’s nine-year history.
The mark might be in jeopardy already.
Early sales for this year’s game between Texas Tech (7-5) and LSU (8-3) have Texas Bowl officials anticipating another big turnout.
“We’re over 60,000 total’s been sold for the game to date,” David Fletcher, the game’s executive director, said late Tuesday. “That is inclusive of team allotment. My understanding is both schools are either close to or through those at this point.”
Zach Thomas’ football pedigree contained a lot of wasn’ts, enough to scare off most programs.
As it turned out, all the things he didn’t bring to the table didn’t offset everything he did well.
Thomas, the two-time all-America middle linebacker at Texas Tech, received the ultimate recognition Tuesday night. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame during the National Football Foundation’s annual awards dinner at the Waldorf Astoria New York.
After he’d assembled his first staff 36 months ago, Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury said he wanted assistants who were highly motivated to become head coaches themselves.
That was worth bearing in mind Tuesday when one of his charter members departed.
Mike Jinks, Kingsbury’s running backs coach the last three seasons, is leaving to become head coach at Bowling Green, taking over a 10-win conference champion team headed to a bowl game.
Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt on Thursday plans to ask the university’s Board of Regents for final approval of Jones AT&T Stadium’s north end zone redevelopment, including one significant modification.
Instead of outdoor club seats extending off the north end zone building, Hocutt said the athletic department will ask for loge seating instead.
Kliff Kingsbury deferred to LSU coach Les Miles.
The Texas Tech coach doesn’t know too much about old-school veer offenses that used to dominate the college football landscape.
So, when asked Tuesday about comparing today’s prevalence of the spread offense to the way the spread or wishbone used to be run, he just looked over at Miles.
Dec. 29 at the Texas Bowl won’t be the first time for LSU coach Les Miles and Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury to square off.
Miles is 1-5 in games against Tech — 0-2 as Oklahoma State’s offensive coordinator from 1995-97 and 1-3 as the Cowboys’ head coach from 2001-04.
The Red Raiders were 2-0 with Kingsbury playing quarterback against Miles-coached teams. Kingsbury threw for 440 yards and four touchdowns in a 49-30 victory in 2001, then threw for 425 yards and four TDs in a 49-24 win the next year.
Young receiver trying to catch up after two position switches
Texas Tech brought in 18 scholarship newcomers this season, about half of whom have already played. Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve been updating the progress of freshmen who are redshirting and some other young players for whom Tech coaches have expectations.
Name: Michael Coley
Class: Redshirt freshman
Position: Inside receiver
High school: Irving
Seven games into the football season, Texas Tech players didn’t picture themselves stumbling before the finish line.
Nor did LSU expect to go from undefeated to the fringes of the Top 25.
The Texas Bowl opponents might not have a lot in common, but they do share this: Both programs want — and need — to end on a high note after three-game losing streaks derailed their seasons.
Branden Jackson stands 6-foot-4 and weighs 272 pounds.
But, the Texas Tech defensive end knows tackling 6-2, 230-pound LSU running back Leonard Fournette isn’t going to be easy
“It is a great challenge and they are going to run the ball and it is going to be fun tackling a guy built like me and seeing how it goes,” Jackson said Sunday after it was announced Texas Tech would face LSU in the Texas Bowl on Dec. 29 in Houston.
Micah Awe wrapped his arms around Leonard Fournette and threw the 230-pound LSU running back to the ground.
Fournette was stuffed at the line of scrimmage.
“I woke up and I was like ‘Did we just have a bowl game? Was that Fournette? Wait that wasn’t real life,’” Awe said.
But, it might have been a premonition.
Sunday afternoon, Texas Tech found out it was going to play LSU in the Texas Bowl on Dec. 29 (8 p.m.).