Texas Tech defensive coordinator Matt Wallerstedt was on with 104.3's The Bottom Line and I thought it was high-time to do a non-transcript of that interview. Keep in mind that this is not a word-for-word transcript, it's me typing and trying to keep pace so these are not actual quotes but it is close.
Before we get to the non-transcript, I wanted to post something that I had been saving for a bit and it was from an interview with Co-DC / LB coach Mike Smith about the type of defense from an interview from near National Signing Day. If you want a bit of insight as to the actual type of defense, these are the notes that I took:
DOES NOT LIKE: Play a lot of over front with quarters coverage.
DOES LIKE: Multiple fronts. Keep it likable and learnable. Will run with field and boundary cornerbacks. The boundary corner will play the short side of the field and is usually a bigger cornerback and more physical. Most likely will not be as quick. The field corner will play the side side of the field and is going to be smaller but quicker.
Wallerstedt confirms the multiple fronts below, so I think that means that you'll see a mix of 3-4 and 4-3 looks on the line and you'll see a stand-up defensive end or outside linebacker that can do multiple things. The portion about Smith not liking the "over front" has to do with the 4-3 over and here is a terrific post about that from Bob Sturm's blog, but written by David Newberry. I'll be referencing this later in the off-season, but it is really worth your time. You can essentially expect to see a 4-3 Under, which is what the Dallas Cowboys and Monte Kiffin will be running this year rather than the 4-3 Over, which is what I think Texas Tech ran last year. The difference is subtle, but if this is something that interests you, check it out.
Let's get to the non-transcript.
Matt Wallerstedt: I think it is to get their mind at ease, five bases in five years, and obviously another transition, a lot of verbiage, a lot of work to do. Art did a lot of work in the right direction.
The Bottom Line: What you have coming back and the returning talent.
MW: The front seven looks good. Obviously not been through spring ball. Anxious to see how the ILB do. The support cast from the NG and DE, Kerry Hyder, Delvon Simmons and Branden Jackson. We look the part up front. We're going to be multiple, we're going to dictate the tempo, defensively, in the coverages, in the front. We have question marks in the safety position. Tried to get that addressed with two JUCO signees and the kid out of Port Arthur Memorial, , will be a factor. Look at the back four, we really have to make sure we have everything addressed and obviously in this conference with the ball being in the air so much.
TBL: Ton of excitement, how has that excitement manifested on the recruiting trail?
MW: Emotion and enthusiasm is contagious. The kids feel it in house here is a whole different ball game than what they have had the last three years internally. Going into people homes with 6 Red Raiders with ownership and pride and wanting to get to Championship level football. A lot of people excited and want to keep momentum going.
TBL: You had to be recruited, what was it that made you accept this opportunity?
MW: May have been more drama, may have drug out with the wife with her mom and little brother who had just moved to College Station, first opportunity to be close to them since her step-father passed away. Career wise, this is where we wanted to be. Just working through my wife's personal issues.
TBL: Relationship with Kingsbury and thoughts on his future?
MW: Great relationship. Lot of mutual respect. Had played against Kliff at Air Force got me tied to Sumlin in the first place. Type of guy that Kliff is, competitive, fiery, going to work around the clock to get things done, what he did with Casey Keenum and Houston's offense, plus what he did with Johnny and offensive personnell at A&M. We feel like the Big 12 is ripe for picking. I think whereas in the past UT and OU may have been out in the front, I think they've come back to the pack, we're excited to be in the mix and be a frontrunner.
TBL: What has been the attitude of the players?
MW: Similar situation especially with defense at TAMU, the attitude, the kids are going to class, aggressive in the weight room. Nothing but positive feedback from Chad Dennis our strength coordinator and his staff. The guys are excited, the guy that was in charge before maybe not really wanting to be here, two feet in. They know the ownership we're bringing in and are going to be here for a while. Looking forward to spring ball at the end of March.
TBL: Five DC's in five years, is that the biggest transition?
MW: Never quite this drastic. I feel for them, they are just going to have to have blind faith, told them on the front end just give me and the staff the chance to build trust. It is hard to build trust over night, it is built over the course of time. If you have great staff chemistry, this situation reminds me to Wyoming, with Dana Dimel and Mark Stoops, the chemistry was out of sight and we took the thing out of sight.
TBL: Nice to have a guy like Hyder?
MW: He's solid, he's been phenomenal, has come to us and asked us what we can do. We are leaning on him and Wesley. I think that will filter back to the second and third levels. It's not peaches and cream any time there is a transition. There has not been nearly as many as A&M last year, but the guys that do want to test the waters, internally, they are helping control the locker room here.