With the start of the season right around the corner, I'm excited about a number of things heading into the season and I oftentimes think about what I'm most excited to see this year. These are the things I'm excited to see this year and absolutely will love to see what you're excited to see. The topics that I'll cover are the offense in general, the defense in general, the special teams, the newcomers and the veterans.
Wesley Is Only a Sophomore
One of the the things I was a bit surprised at when the 2011 roster was released was the fact that DT Dennell Wesley is only a sophomore (here's Wesley's DTN profile when he committed). I usually get a bit down on JUCO players because they only have two years to make a significant impact and more times than not, those JUCO players either tend to disappoint or just make an impact in their senior season. Wesley is the only 300 pound defensive tackle on the team. The biggest player besides Wesley are Pearlie Graves (285) and Chris Perry (286) just to give you an idea as to the type of spot that Wesley can fill. Wesley is a true noseguard and if he's in shape, he should be in the rotation relatively quickly. And if Wesley can take a double-team offensively, it should free up a defender to make a play. I'd also add that I've given way too much love to Leon Mackey before ever playing a down, but if Wesley can be a one or three technique tackle, he might have just as big an impact as Mackey, but won't receive the headlines.
Osunde Is Better Than Most Walk-Ons
CB Happiness Osunde (Osunde was formally "Junior" and his name now is "Happiness". This is the definition of awesome.) originally committed to Minnesota from Kilgore J.C., but if you remember back when Osunde committed, Osunde allegedly posted Facebook messages regarding a judge not letting him go to Minnesota and something to do with his past. I've never followed up on what that might be, I guess I don't have the time or inclination to do so. Either way, I don't know about any sort of situation regarding Osunde, so I'm just going assume that with Osunde being in Lubbock, this could benefit both Texas Tech and Osunde. I think that Osunde isn't your average walk-on as he has pretty good measurables for a cornerback and had been offered a scholarship at Minnesota. I mentioned in his profile that Osunde doesn't have a problem stepping up to support the run and he does play off the ball as a cornerback in JUCO, which I think is good for what he's going to be asked to do at Texas Tech. I could certainly envision a situation where Osunde is an integral part of the secondary for this year and next.
More after the jump.
Durham Gets One Year
How does the playing at Central Oklahoma University compare to playing in the Big 12? That's the big question for Giorgio Durham, who was COU's defensive back of the year, had 8 interceptions and 66 tackles. Here's Durham's YouTube just so you can see his athleticism:
You can see some athleticism, but it's against incredibly suspect competition and it's tough to figure out if Durham is as good as he is or if the competition is that bad. I have to think that he has to have some talent and Durham ended the spring as the second-team free safety. This is also a situation where Durham has one year to impress and make an impact as he's a senior this year. I don't know how well he'll translate, but he's obviously in the mix and if he's motivated, then perhaps he makes a big impact on this team. The one downside for Durham is that he's currently injured so he's got to get better in order to see the field.
Now it's your turn. Tell me what you're excited to see from some other rarely considered newcomers this year.