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Texas Tech Sunday Morning Notes - Best Athletes Out There Edition

Double-T Nation News:

I skipped out of town on Friday night with my brother-in-law (on a whim) and went to my father-in-law's deer-hunting-place (it's not a lease because he owns the property) near Bogata (East Texas) and when I got back yesterday I decided to not even touch the computer for an entire day. I had scheduled the defensive back preview to post Saturday at noon (sometime on Thursday), but it wasn't ready, as I intended to work on it on Saturday morning. Oh well.

Texas Tech Football:

LAJ's Don Williams has a number of articles as I try and catch up a bit. First, the team arrived in Dallas yesterday and Captain Mike Leach says that the team needs to focus:

"We need to do a really good job of being focused when we get back together," Tech coach Mike Leach said. "I think everybody wants the same thing, but you kind of count on your older guys to set the example and have the discipline to do it, because as you go away, you do have to get right back at it and have good work. That’s part of the deal with bowl games."

Williams also runs down the practice schedule and public relations stuff, as well as a breakdown of what Texas Tech is expected to make from the Cotton Bowl.

Williams also has a nice article on Rylan Reed initially signing a letter of intent with Arkansas and then head coach Houston Nutt, but Reed opted to play baseball with the Chicago White Sox. Here's Nutt on Reed:

"Rylan Reed, we’ll never forget,’’ Nutt said during a post-practice news conference Saturday afternoon at SMU’s Ford Stadium. "Mike Markuson was recruiting him, and I never will forget (Reed) walking in the room, how tall he was. I couldn’t believe that he was a pitcher. About 6-foot-7. I don’t think he weighed nearly as much as he does right now when we first met him."

Snip

"I just remember this really great young man that was going to have a great future," Nutt said. "We didn’t know if it was going to be tight end, tackle, but we knew he was going to be a big-time football player, because he was athletic, strong, quick and just (had) great character. His mom was awesome. What a great lady, and we really thought we had him, thought he was coming with us."

Last but certainly not least, Williams' Red Raiders Football Notebook mentions DE Brandon Sesay missing practice yesterday because of some flight issues and other odds and ends.

FWST's Trae Thompson and Dwain Price has a Cotton Bowl Notebook and Price has a feature on sophomore linebacker Bront Bird and his decision to forgo his redshirt last year. Here's defensive coordinator Ruffin McNeill on his decision:

"When coach named me coordinator, my first thought was, 'Well, let’s get the best players and best athletes out there,’ " McNeill said. "Freshman or not, we were going to play Bront.

"He said, 'I don’t want to come off a redshirt if I’m going to just be on special teams.’ I told him you’re going to be playing."

DMN's Bobbi Roquemore writes about Ole Miss being ready for the Air-Raid offense and some other news and notes. Here's Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt:

"That's a tough chore for our DBs," Nutt said. "Graham Harrell, their quarterback, has only been sacked about eight times. Their receivers are just outstanding, strong and big. Coach Mike Leach's system, they understand it and know what he wants. They know what they're doing, and they execute."

Texas Tech Basketball:

LAJ's Jeff Walker writes about Nick Okorie's return to the lineup tonight as the Red Raiders face Stanford the Cardinal. Here's trainer Jon Murray on Okorie:

"Nick should play and Prince will try to practice (Saturday) and see how it goes," Tech trainer Jon Murray said.

Also, assistant coach Chris Beard previews the Cardinal:

"They’re a little bit more perimeter-based," Tech associate head coach Chris Beard said. "More important than losing the Lopez twins, though, is that they have a new coach and a new system. They play more pressure, more man-to-man and try to create their offense off their defense.

"They are very experienced with the three seniors in their starting lineup. Those guys have all been through the battles."

San Jose Mercury News' Darren Sabedra profiles Junior Knight and is impressed that a Knight is taking the time to talk to the media.