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Wednesday Morning Notes - Notice Is Served Edition

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DTN News:

I won't be going to Saturday's game against NW State. I originally was going to protest this game by not going at all because it's NW State. With the promotion of McNeill, I was anxious to see what he might do. Now the only hotel rooms available are $200.00 a night. That's more than my meager budget (i.e. wife) will allow. Thus, I'm back protesting. There's no reason why Texas Tech should be playing NW State and I just won't support it. Northwestern? Yes. NW State? No.


You'll also note that I didn't review the defensive performance from Saturday. I was working on the review on Sunday afternoon and the news came down that Setencich resigned, I scrapped the review because now I thought they seemed them immaterial. Besides, every unit received an F. Click.

Texas Tech Football:

LAJ's Don Williams' Red Raiders Football Notebook notes an interesting move in the defense as freshman linebacker Bront Bird will give up his redshirt year and play on Saturday. Here's DC McNeill:

"He made plays Sunday tackling. He's made plays in Thursday night football," McNeill said, referring to the team's weekly Thursday scrimmage for young players. "He's a good player. So we're going to give him the opportunity to make plays and get another athlete on the field."

Perhaps this move is indicative of what we can expect from Coach McNeill: more team speed and playmakers. It's been no secret that Kellen Tillman is my least favorite Red Raider, and I've always thought that part of the reason for my dismay is that he never made plays. Last week, the angles he took on some plays made me want to throw my wife's pug through the TV (I'm kidding, my wife's pug is pretty heavy, there's no way I could throw her across the room).

The bottom line is that notice is being served on each and every one of these men.

Also in the RRF Notebook, Coach Leach somewhat agrees with Coach Gundy and criticizing players and he thinks that Crabtree will be fine after the potential game-winning drop:

"I think part of what makes Crabtree what he is, is he's got a lot of personal assurance and confidence," Leach said. "He's not an excuse guy. I know it sounds odd to say: There's some guys that, that would bother. He's not one of them. He made a ton of plays. We wouldn't even have been in that position (to win) without Michael Crabtree."

LAJ's Don Williams' feature article is on new defensive coordinator, Ruffin McNeill, and what we can expect. Here's Leach on what to expect:

"I think it's just basically good fundamental drills and coaching is what's going on out there," he said. "I think as a team, and defensively in particular, we were hungry for that.

"If you're having a good practice on any side of the ball, you should be able to hear it. You should be able to hear the pads hit and the voices and intense movement. I heard that today. I was impressed with the way the defensive coaches have handled the situation and impressed with the enthusiasm of our players."

Here's Don and Coach McNeill on what they're working on in practice:

The Raiders are still working in helmets and shoulder pads, which is their norm, rather than full pads, but McNeill said there's an emphasis on hitting and wrapping up.

That, and attention to detail.

"As a staff, we wanted to make sure our fundamentals are where they need to be,'' he said.

That being the case, McNeill said the players might not have gotten as many repetitions as usual on Tuesday. More time was spent on making corrections. McNeill said getting players to align properly, a tenet Setencich stressed, is something he will emphasize, too.

I'm still shocked that we're talking about working on fundamentals, like tackling and lining up correctly, but I guess after Saturday, you start at the ground level and build them up. Hopefully, Saturday will present an opportunity for the defense to work on all of these things.


Congratulations to former Texas Tech coach Spike Dykes for being announced as part of the latest class for the Texas Sports Hall of Fame. Dykes will be a part of a class along with San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, Leta Andrews (girls high school coaching legend), Dallas Stars' Mike Modano, former Dallas Cowboys' receiver Michael Irvin, former Dallas Texans' running back Abner Haynes, and former NFL lineman, Jim Ray Smith. Go read the whole article, it's worth your time.

Big 12 and College Football:

SAEN's Tim Griffin ranks the Big 12 teams as well as players of the year, Crabtree and Harrell are 2 and 3 on the offense . . . FWST's Wendell Barnhouse breaks down the Heisman race