Double-T Nation Daily Diatribe | 2011-01-14

Freshmen Ready to Roll: LAJ's Don Williams and DT's Tommy Magelsson talked with RB Ronnie Daniels and LB Blake Dees as they arrive onto campus a semester early than their 2011 signing class comrades.  Daniels sounds like he still wants to play running back and he looks forward to competing:

"The only place I think might have recruited me as a defensive player was Oregon," Daniels said Thursday. "They were recruiting me as an athlete. They were recruiting me hard, but I didn’t want to go there, because I didn’t want them to put my fate in their hands — pick a position for me to play — because I like to score touchdowns. As long as I’m on the offensive side, I’ll be happy."

Snip.

"It’s football," he said. "You’ve just got to get out there and play. Competing with other athletes makes you better and the team better, so I’m looking forward to that."

Daniels is a special player who may be a bit underrated because he's coming from New Mexico, but I tend to think that a player of his size and speed would be more well-thought-of if he had played in Texas.  I haven't updated his profile (see along the right side-bar) in a while, but here's his 2010 highlights.

And Dees knows that he's going to be needed on defense:

"That’s why I came here, because I knew they needed some help at linebacker," he said. "That’s why the coaches wanted me to come in, because they thought I could bring some good size and intensity to the defense."

In the DT article, there's a photo of Dees taking in a photo of Zach Thomas, perhaps that is a good comparison of what Dees is, which is a guy that doesn't have good speed, has decent size, and Texas Tech was probably Dees best offer, but Dees was always around the ball in the film I watched.  Dees might be the least heralded player in the class, but he was always making plays and helped lead his high school team to a state championship. 

Leong to Play in All-Star Game:  Per FOX Sports Arizona, I found a mention that WR Lyle Leong will play in the inaugural Eastham Energy College Football All Star Game.  Congrats to Leong and we know you'll show the scouts that all you do is score touchdowns!

Texas Tech Adds Lumberjacks in 2013:  I don't know why I found this in the Kansas City Star, but the Lumberjacks of Stephen F. Austin have been added to Texas Tech's 2013 football schedule.  Awesome.

Miscellaneous:  Per OC Neal Brown's Twitter, there were 17 players that had a 3.00 or above on the offensive side of the ball . . . hat-tip to RRS.com's Aaron Dickens, per CNBC's Darren Rovell there were 18 college football programs that sold out their entire season, one of those was Texas Tech . . . on the Williams and Hyatt Show free podcast, RP.com's Travis Cram talks about the defensive coordinator search and thinks that a coordinator will be named today . . . RB Baron Batch will start writing for 1340 The Fan in Lubbock to chronicle his hopeful journey to the NFL . . . I think this has been linked as a FanShot, but Wes Welker is funny.  As I was driving home from work, I was listening to the aforementioned Galloway & Co. and they were reading this story from ProFootballTalk about the incredibly witty Wes Welker.  Just go read the story . . . I haven't had time to listen to this, but ESPN's Galloway & Company talked with former head coach Mike Leach yesterday . . .

Up Next | Kansas St. Wildcats (12-5, 0-2)
When | Saturday, January 15, 2011 @ 12:00 p.m.
Where | Bramlage Coliseum, Manhattan, KS

Avoiding 0-3: DT's Tommy Magelssen writes that the Red Raiders are hoping to avoid an 0-3 start to the Big 12 season and head coach Pat Knight isn't sure how to get his players to shoot better:

"I can’t do anything more unless I can call (Kansas State coach) Frank (Martin) and just tell him to back off and play us four against five," Knight said. "But still, the way our guys are shooting it right now, we may have a problem going five against four."

Awesome, there's nothing more that he can do.  Freshman SF Jaye Crockett identifies where his team needs to improve:

Crockett also said rebounding and assists need to get better down the stretch. Tech is going up against the 10th-ranked rebounding team in the nation in the Wildcats. He said watching film of Tech’s recent losses has opened his eyes to what needs to be done.

"I see that we give up too many easy buckets, like second-chance points, offensive boards, and that stuff, turnovers and they score," Crockett said.

Top Big 12 Freshmen:  KU Sports' Eric Sorrentino runs down the top 10 freshmen of the Big 12 and Crockett receives some recognition:

10. Jaye Crockett, Texas Tech
It's been a disastrous season in Lubbock (8-9 overall), but the 6-foot-7 forward has played rather well for a freshman, averaging 5.4 points and 3.5 rebounds per game. Most important, perhaps, has been Crockett's accuracy (50.7 percent) from the field.

Pining for Gillispie:  For those of you who are wishfully thinking about former UTEP, TAMU and Kentucky head coach Billy Gillispie then you need to check out FWST's Mike Jones article on Gillispie and his fall from Kentucky, DUI's and where he's at now.  This sells me more than anything else:

Why should any AD take that gamble?

"I think, number one, we're going to do great in basketball," he said. "I think that's proven.

"Our teams are going to get better in a hurry and create a great deal of excitement. We had the biggest turnarounds in college basketball and the greatest increase in attendance at UTEP and A&M. We're going to get it done academically.

"Those aren't going to be the questions that are going to need to be answered," Gillispie said. "The question that does need to be answered is, 'Are you going to repeat the same mistakes?'

"And the answer is no."

Miscellaneous:  CT's Steve Walintek has his weekly power-poll and you won't believe who is last . . .

Rangers as Red Raiders: Yesterday, the Texas Rangers Winter Caravan rolled through Lubbock and there were a handful of pictures rolling around Twitter (here and here) and the official site of P Derek Holland, 1B Mitch Moreland and broadcaster Tom Grieve working out at Dan Law Field and wearing some Texas Tech garb.  LAJ's George Watson also has a story on yesterday's event.

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