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Double-T Nation Daily Diatribe :: 09.11.09

Odds and Ends

  9/11:  I don't want to ignore the significance of this date, but I don't want to get political either, that's not why you're here, but it is still a significant date and a time to reflect.  I hope you do that some time today.

  Going to the Game:  I'm headed to Lubbock sometime Friday morning and will be there way too close to kickoff but if I don't go to the game this weekend, it's going to be quite some time before I'm able to head that way.  Very excited about the game, although I'm not excited about the chances of rain. 

  CN Writing Guide and Community Rules:  If you ever wanted to know essentially how I feel about community guidelines for DTN and how to write FanPosts, FanShots, etc., then check out Corn Nation's post yesterday.  I'm thinking about copying and pasting the entire thing and claiming it as my own (I'm kidding . . . sorta).

Texas Tech Football

  Swindall to Play:  LAJ's Don Williams reports that IR Tramain Swindall will play on Saturday, according to receivers coach Lincoln Riley, and will likely bump either Adam James or Cornelius Douglas to the third team:  

"He’s practiced a lot harder and a lot better (this week),’’ Riley said. "You see a sense of urgency with him that we didn’t see in camp. I think anytime you’re a guy that’s played some and you get demoted to scout team for three weeks, all of a sudden your effort and intensity and all that magically seems to pick up.

There's also a bit about Matt Baldwin, Captain Leach's agent, in this article, mentioning something about how although he played for Rice in the late 90's, he's cheering for Texas Tech because of Leach.  Really?  There's no school loyalty?  I think now we know why this took a meeting between Leach and Hance to get things done.

Williams also has a recruiting update at the end of the article, noting that the Red Raiders will likely take 1 more offensive lineman, 3 or 4 defensive linemen and a linebacker, although this is the most prevelant part:

Tech’s two oral commitments this week give the Red Raiders 19 pledges for their 2010 class. With Tech likely to sign 24 or 25 players, that leaves five or six spots to fill.

Dallas Madison offensive lineman Javius Townsend (6-foot-4, 300 pounds), who committed to Tech on Tuesday, and Navarro College’s Lawrence Rumph (6-3, 270), who has played both defensive end and defensive tackle, are expected to visit campus this weekend.

According to the recruiting service, Rumph has scholarship offers from Arkansas, Baylor, Missouri, Oklahoma State and Southern Mississippi, but not yet from Tech. He was a high-school teammate of Tech defensive tackle Chris Perry at Keller Fossil Ridge and was credited with 16 sacks as a senior.

  Rock M Nation Dominates the Interwebs:  Rock M Nation has a couple of items that need pointing out, first up is the Week 2 Big 12 Roundtable Recap and in addition to that is the Beyond the Box Score for all week 1 Big 12 games last week and I encourage you to read the whole thing, but the numbers say that Texas Tech must do a better job running the ball:

Tech fell into WAY too many passing downs for this caliber of opponent.  Potts' three interceptions came on 3rd-and-15, 2nd-and-13, and 3rd-and-15.  Granted, he should really learn what passes he should and shouldn't make, but...a 29.4% rushing success rate?  Against North Dakota?  That MUST improve, and immediately.  Tech is obviously not tremendously likely to beat Texas or OSU on the road, and they'll certainly be underdogs against OU at home, but with poor line play and no threat of a run, suddenly trips to Houston and Nebraska become dicey (especially against NU's defensive line), as do home games against Kansas and Baylor.  You have to figure Tech will go 8-4 like they almost always seem to do, but if they can't even pretend to be capable of running the ball, then they're in trouble.

  Freshman Focus on Joel Gray:  LAJ's Don Williams looks at the redshirts this year and LT Joel Gray is up and offensive line coach Matt Moore likes what he has in Gray:

"Joel is just one of those guys that very consistently wins,’’ Moore said. "It’s not always pretty, but he seems to get the job done. That’s the same thing he did in high school. He always found a way to win, and he’s real competitive. He’s athletic, has really good feet. That helps him out a lot.’’

  Owls Look to Rebound:  The Chron's Jeffrey Martin writes that the Owls must rebound quickly from their loss to UAB last week and focus on the Red Raiders. 

"You want to put (UAB) behind you, but you have to remember it in a way," sophomore safety Travis Bradshaw said. "You don't want to have that feeling again, but it's something you also want to use as motivation.

"We were confident going in, and we knew what we had to do. We just didn't execute."

  Rice Finding Identity:  DT's Adam Coleman notes that the Owls are still looking for their identity after losing so much talent last year (Jarrett Dillard, Chase Clement and James Casey come to mind) and Captain Mike Leach (emphasis mine) says that his team would be stupid to look past the Owls:

"If they’re that stupid, we’ve got a lot of problems," said Leach, whose Red Raiders take on Rice at 6 p.m. Saturday at Jones AT&T Stadium. "I mean, we’re only playing Rice this week."

And Leach acknowledged that although Rice lost quite a bit, much like Texas Tech, they manufacture talent and production:

"They’re missing a quarterback from last year, who I thought was a great player, one of my favorite all-time," Leach said. "I enjoyed watching him play. Everybody says ‘Well, they lost so-and-so.’ Well they also coached and manufactured these guys to some point, so there’s nothing to say they can’t do it again."

  Thoughts from Tortilla Retort:  I've fallen a little behind on linking to the Tortilla Retort and dedfischer and RRR have thoughts on the UND game (here, here and here).

  Neglected Audio and Video: KAMC and Fox34 ask the same question, which is if Texas Tech looking past Rice.  Check out the video for the surprising answer.


  National and Big 12 Links:  ESPN's Tim Griffin looks at how effective the Big 12 offenses and defenses are and predicts outcomes for this weekend's games . . . The Rivalry Esq. previews the USC vs. Ohio St. game . . .

  2010 Recruiting Tidbits:  Tonight, quarterbacks Scotty Young and Zack Lee will face off as Young's Denton-Ryan Team will take on Lee's McKinney squad.  Young is committed to Texas Tech and Lee, initially looked at Texas Tech, committed to LSU . . . the first commitment this week, LB Fred Harvey talks about his commitment to Texas Tech:

"The first time I ever talked to coach Simmons, he had told me that whenever they were able to send me a scholarship offer, they were going to do it," said Harvey, who tallied 78 solo tackles and 21 sacks as a junior last season.

"Out of all the schools, (Texas Tech) recruited me the hardest. They made sure I always had e-mails coming from them. ... It's like they were really working hard, wanting me to come there."

  Smart Football on Wes Welker: Smart Football's Chris Brown guest-posted on the NY Times pro-football blog, the Fifth Down and had this about former Red Raider Wes Welker and how he is so effective in New England (I would love for some of our current receivers to read this):

He does this by running every imaginable route that can be run from a depth of about 5 to 15 yards. Although he has enough speed to get downfield, it is his quick feet that are his biggest asset, and he marries them with his precise routes — revealing his art like a great violinist playing his favorite Vivaldi pieces. Keep in mind that Welker stepped in with a low profile and almost immediately earned Brady’s trust simply by getting open, all this in an offense not designed to get the ball to a single guy on a given play, but rather to spread the field and let the expert reader of defenses deliver the ball to the open guy.