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Texas Tech Friday Morning Notes - They and Them Edition

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DTN's Top Six:

  1. The Big Picture with some very cool photos from the 2009 Dakar Rally (hat-tip US).
  2. My little brother shared it, so I am too . . . Disco Ballers, a portable party.
  3. Big 12 Men's Basketball Outlook from Bring On the Cats.
  4. Smart Football with a good look at the deep crossing route.
  5. Genius. Corn Nation, "The Return of Bradford, Tebow, and McCoy - The Equivalent of College Football Hell on Earth".
  6. ESPN Big 12 blogger Tim Griffin empties out the mailbag.

Captain Mike Leach vs. The Contract

The AP's Kristie Rieken writes that everyone but him is still working on the infamous contract:

"They’re still working on it," he said. "Just trying to make it competitive within the conference."

I'll let Reiken take it from here:

All indications are that Leach wants to remain in Lubbock, but when asked if there was a question of if he’ll sign the extension, the quirky and outspoken coach answered: "There is right now. We’re just waiting for them to get it all worked out."

Ever noticed that it's always about "they" and "them" working on the contract? It's never about "me" or "I"? I'm incredibly bothered by all of this, but I think I'd just be rehashing what's already been said so much better by you guys.

Declaring for the Draft

ESPN's Mark Schlabach writes that Texas Tech is one of the losers from the NFL draft declarations:

Not only will Red Raiders coach Mike Leach have to replace record-setting quarterback Graham Harrell next season, but his team will also be without Crabtree, a redshirt sophomore, who entered the NFL draft.

Crabtree was arguably the greatest receiver in Texas Tech history, finishing his career with 231 receptions for 3,127 yards with 41 touchdowns in 26 games.

The Red Raiders also lost junior defensive end Brandon Williams, who led the Big 12 with 13 sacks last season. While Crabtree was expected to turn pro, Williams' decision reportedly caught Texas Tech's coaches off guard.

Darcel McBath and Louis Vasquez

DT's Adam Coleman has a piece on seniors Darcel McBath and Louis Vasquez playing in this Saturday's East-West Shrine Game and Vasquez is making an impact, at least according to Chad Reuter from NFLDraftScout.com, via Sportsline:

OG Louis Vasquez, Texas Tech: When you talk about line play in coach Mike Leach's Texas Tech offense, people think of wide splits and pass protection. But Vasquez is not a finesse player by any stretch of the imagination. He proved to scouts that he can fire off the ball from a three-point stance (which he didn't do much in Tech's pass- and draw-happy offense) and dominate tackles in the power running game.

Final Rankings

ESPN's Big 12 blogger Tim Griffin writes that the Harrell-to-Crabtree connection was the season's best moment, also included is kicker Matt Williams' incredible story, and the Red Raiders check in at #3 of the final Big 12 Rankings.

Texas vs. Texas Tech; 01-17-09 @ 3:00 p.m.; United Spirit Arena

DT's Alex Ybarra looks at tomorrow's game against Texas and remembers Texas Tech's improbable win against Texas last year. Sophomore guard John Roberson sounds ready to play:

"We're coming off a loss too, so I mean we're gonna be hunting them just as much as they're hunting us," said Roberson, who averages 14.4 points and 6.1 assists per game. "So we just gotta come out and just stick to our game plan and execute, so we should be good."

And Ybarra and freshman center Robert Lewandowski note that the Red Raiders hope to have back Trevor Cook and Damir Suljagic:

Freshman center Robert Lewandowski said finding a way to win the rebounding battle may be a little easier for Tech with the return of forwards Trevor Cook and Damir Suljagic.

"Obviously, we're continuing to work on defense," he said. "The Baylor game was a big step up on defense. We did it really well for most of the game, there was a few let downs in rebounding and stuff like that. I had a few slip ups. That's something we work on every day, defense and rebounding."