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Red Raider Gridiron :: Texas Tech to Open Against Alabama in 2012

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Getting Organized:  April 17th is sneaking up on me and I think we need to get somewhat organized.  I plan on driving up on Friday (from DFW) and then getting to the Jones AT&T stadium somewhat early that morning.  Normally, Texas Tech has a garage sale of all of the items that they want to get rid of from the prior year, which means that you might be able to pick up a TT vs. Ole Miss Cotton Bowl t-shirt.  In any event, I told my wife that I was going to go buy about 20 Texas Tech shirts on the cheap and then bring them to orphanage when I get to Ethiopia.  You can also get some great deals, including old jerseys and things of that nature.

What I need from you, is a head-count.  If you plan on attending the spring game and you also intend on hanging out with other DTN'ers then please leave a comment.  I'd like a somewhat official head-count.  Part two of this process will be to figure out a location.  I know that Raider Doc and maybe someone else has volunteered their tailgate as a DTN central, and if we can get an idea as to where we might be, this would be outstanding.  Again, that's for later in the week, but be thinking about location.

Texas Tech vs. Alabama in 2012:  Hat-tip jeffinhouston for the FanShot, LAJ's Don Williams reports that the Texas Tech Red Raiders will take on the Alabama Crimson Tide in 2012 at Cowboys Stadium the first week of September:

"Coach (Tommy) Tuberville is aware of the game and is in support of playing it,’’ Myers said. "I understand (Crimson Tide coach Nick) Saban is also on board for it. We’re in the talking stages, but we haven’t gotten down to talking contract with it yet.’’

The game would be the first weekend of September 2012, Myers said, and would not require Tech to move a game to accommodate a deal with Alabama.

My gut reaction is that this is a good thing despite the fact that tough non-conference games can be an awful situation, especially if we lose.  I do like the fact that head coach Tommy Tuberville is living up to his promise to play at least one BCS opponent in the non-conference schedule.

Different Strength and Conditioning:  LAJ's Don Williams writes about the different types of strength and conditioning work under Joe Walker, the new coach at this spot, replacing the dearly loved Bennie Wylie.  Here's DT Colby Whitlock:

"They’re sore all the time,’’ nose tackle Colby Whitlock said. "Especially when coach (Joe) Walker first came in. There was three weeks walking around with sore legs. Just some of the different drills and different lifts and techniques we did were really emphasizing our legs and were really something.’’

And RB Harrison Jeffers says that it's all about speed:

"It’s not more running, but it’s more agility and speed work,’’ running back Harrison Jeffers said. "With Bennie, it was more endurance. But with coach Walker, it’s more about speed, quick change-over, how quick you can get out of your cuts,  how quick you can do everything else on the move and how you can think while you’re on the move.’’

Williams also has this bit on the offensive line losing some of their baby-fat:

One place Red Raiders might soon be able to notice a huge difference is at the waistlines of their offensive linemen. Deveric Gallington has dropped from 354 pounds during the 2009 season to his current weight 325. Waddle dropped from 367 after the season to 337 at the moment. Mickey Okafor has gone from 345 after the season to 318.

Waddle said one new twist with Walker is the linemen keeping and turning in food-consumption logs each week during the off-season.

Gallington mentions that some of his weight came off with Wylie, but Walker has kept things up.  In any event, I always thought that the offensive line, especially the guys mentioned, were a bit overweight.  This is good news.

Running Back Competition:  DT's Mike Graham writes about the competition at running back and RB Aaron Crawford is trying to get back into the rotation:

"I’m not a fortune teller, but hopefully I’m going to do my best and work hard," Crawford said after the Red Raiders’ fifth practice of the spring Monday. "Nothing is given, and I’ve learned that over the past two years. You have to take advantage of every opportunity, hopefully just go with the flow and do your best."

Snip.

"I had some minor setbacks," Crawford said. "Everyone goes through that. I can’t complain, I just keep fighting, never quit. That’s the mentality."

I'm happy that Crawford has this attitude.  I know he has a place on this team, he can be a valuable player.

Exclusive, premium and highly guarded content after the jump.

Notes, Notes and More Notes:  The the same Williams article linked above (re. the Alabama game), Tuberville said that QB Steven Sheffield had the best scrimmage:

"I thought he had a pretty good day,’’ Tuberville said. "He was head and heels the best guy at quarterback, but (Taylor) Potts had some (passes) dropped.

. . . Tuberville also was critical of the team after the first scrimmage and expects better effort:

Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said the team didn’t grade out well on the first scrimmage. He said there were too many mental mistakes on both sides and the defense got tired.

"We looked good about 60 percent of the time, and we just kind of shut it down about 40 percent of the time,’’ Tuberville said. "You can’t win championships doing that.’’

. . . Williams also mentions that Tuberville wants to utilize a tight-end at least 15 to 20 plays a game this year and the comments on the LAJ will make your head spin.  For those of us who are a little more rational, Leach did utilize a tight end, maybe not 15 to 20 plays, but he did utilize a jumbo package, with Adam James at tight end and Ryan Hale at fullback.  From everything that I've read thus far, it still appears that the offense is going to remain relatively similar and I'll say this again, the only way the offense would have been exactly the same would be if Tuberville hired Leach as his offensive coordinator . . . Williams also details some of the stars of yesterday's mini-scrimmage and your leaders in the clubhouse are S Franklin Mitchem, WR Austin Zouzalik . . .

This List is a Joke:  FWSW's Steve Hunt ranked the Big 12's best quarterbacks and this guy had Oklahoma's Landry Jones as the best quarterback in the conference.  Ridiculous.  There's no debating that TAMU's Jerrod Johnson is the best QB in the league right now.  He was so much better than Jones, it's not even debatable and I have no idea how this guy could do this.  This must have been a typo.  The two Texas Tech quarterbacks were ranked third.

Video:  DT's Brent Winegarner:

 

And Fox34: