Indispensable: absolutely necessary.
This is not a team's most valuable player or a team's most important player, but players on a team that we can't live without. We're going to run through the top 10 most indispensable Texas Tech Red Raiders. Here's the countdown:
Player: Jonathan LaCour
Quick, name the starting punter for our beloved Red Raiders . . . Give up? Grant Berg is your starting punter, and that's not necessarily a knock on Mr. Berg, but Captain Leach didn't announce open tryouts at the beginning of spring practices for no reason. Coach Leach does not make it a habit to offer scholarships to kickers and punters, but he did with LaCour and with good reason. There's no one else to punt the ball.
As a senior last season, Alex Reyes averaged 45 yards a punt and punted an average of a little more than 3 times a game. For those of you who don't think that a punter should make my list of the top 10 most indispensible players, then think about the prospect of giving up 10 yards each time Texas Tech punts the ball. I'm not completely certain that Berg would only manage 35 yards a punt, but if he does, over the course of a game that 30 yards. That's 30 yards that I think our defense will need.
LaCour averaged 40 yards a punt without the strong West Texas wind at his back and pinned opposing teams inside their 10 yard line 7 times last year. I don't think there's any doubt that LaCour has the pedigree to play on a Division I level, but it's that he's going to have to do it the minute he steps on campus. That's got to be a little scary. I'm hoping that LaCour isn't phased at all by 60,000 fans yelling at him when he's punting from the endzone.
This kid, at some important point during this next season, is going to have to be clutch, which perhaps makes him more indispensable than any other Red Raider because there's not much behind him.