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Red Raider Gridiron :: Injuries Hit and Lewis Injured in 2009


The Hits Just Keep Coming:  I promise, I don't sit somewhere behind a huge curtain where I generate news and topics and more news, it just happens.

Injuries to Defensive Line:  KAMC's David Collier reports that both DT Colby Whitlock and DT Myles Wade will be out of the spring game.  It appears that Wade's injury is an knee injury and Collier has video of Wade on crutches, but there's really no way to tell about the severity.  DT's Jose Rodriguez has a bit more on Whitlock's injury, where he apparently hurt his jaw one day, came back to practice, and then it started to hurt.  Here's head coach Tommy Tuberville:

"We lost Colby Whitlock the other day and he’s out," Tech head coach Tommy Tuberville said after Wednesday’s practice. "He’s having surgery (today) and we’re kind of beat up."


"Hurt his jaw," Tuberville said. "A little worse than that. He didn’t even know it, he practiced with it. It happened during the scrimmage. Four days later, it starts hurting. It’s just one of those things. A little different."

Lewis Questions Treatment of 2009 Injury:  LAJ's Don Williams writes that IR Detron Lewis questions how he was handled by the former staff after being injured in 2009, a hamstring injury.  Here's Lewis (emphasis mine):

"I think I would have been better if I would have sat out,’’ the Red Raiders’ inside receiver said. "Texas was the next game; I wanted to play that (week). But all the other ones, when I was just limping around, wasn’t a hundred percent, was just jogging my routes … . As a coach or a head coach, you should want to sit one of your best players down to get healthy, but obviously that wasn’t the case, so I just kept playing.’’


"It bothered me the whole season,’’ he said. "I mean, I never got to a hundred percent because I was asked to play every game. Somebody didn’t want me to sit out, so I just played the whole season being hurt or being a certain percentage besides a hundred. The bowl game is the best I felt probably the whole season besides the first game when I wasn’t hurt.’’

This is exactly why folks will never be able to move on from the Leach fiasco.  Whether you like it or not, there are two distinct sides to this argument, and the most vocal of members of DTN do not side with the administration, but there is another side, and I guess you can throw Lewis into that mix, that although Leach recruited him and expected Lewis to replace Crabtree in production, it appears that he may have been ready for the Captain to leave.  As mentioned above, it's issues like this that continues to pour salt on wounds that makes Texas Tech fans even more divisive.  I don't know that there's anything that we can do about it and I'm guessing that the national news angle will be that with the Lewis injury, he had a history of ignoring injury problems.  The only people that know the truth are the people in that locker room, and let's not forget that the player has a duty to properly disclose his injury.  Lots of angles to take here and Lewis addresses the issue of the people outside of the lockeroom:

Asked whether he was irritated that Tech followers didn’t know specifics about what he was dealing with, Lewis said, "Yeah, but that’s the thing: Those are outsiders. They don’t know. I really don’t worry what other people have to say. People behind the walls know I was hurt the whole season. I was hurt, and that’s why I didn’t have the year I expected last year.’’

I also found IR coach Sonny Cumbie's comment on Lewis interesting as well:

"I think there’s a lot of potential, a lot of good things in his future, as long as he continues to work hard,’’ Cumbie said. "He’s been fairly coachable. He listens to some of the instruction that myself and coach (Neal) Brown (provide) … . It’s not a deal where we know everything. We’re just trying to help him. We’re trying to help him get better at the little things of running routes, and I think he can have a great senior season.’’

"Fairly coachable"?  " . . . listens to some of the instruction . . . "?  I'm going to do my best not to read too much into these comments, but Cumbie is a smart guy and I think that there's some coaching going on here in the press and although I do not doubt Lewis' injury it sounds as if Lewis may not be the most coachable or willing student.  Someone tell me if I'm reading this incorrectly.

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Defensive Backs Improving:  DT's Adam Coleman writes that the defensive backs hope that the spring and summer practices allow them to continue to improve.  Sophomore DB D.J. Johnson is excited:

"I think the pressure is probably going to be on those offenses," Johnson said. "The way we’re running it, it sets up a lot of failure for other offenses, so it’s going to be fun."

Incumbent starter S Cody Davis says that there are no starters:

"I think I put enough pressure on myself just to do good," he said. "You know, with the new staff, it’s a new slate. No starters are picked out, so I’m just going to try to get out on the field first, and then seeing what I can do with that."

And CB LeRon Moore knows that the defensive backs must be ready to play immediately:

"We’re all just going to continue working technique," he said. "Watching film, having an install every day. You just try to keep it fresh because you can’t be relearning when fall comes because in three games we’re going to play Texas.

We’ve got to come in it running, hitting the ground running in the fall."

Notes, Notes and More Notes:  LAJ's Don Williams notebook says that redshirt freshman Derrick Mays is moving from wide receiver to inside receiver.  Here's WR coach Tommy Mainord:

"For what we’re doing with our inside receivers, I think he’s going to fit us well there,’’ Mainord said Wednesday. "We don’t know yet. He’s gone over to (inside receivers coach) Sonny Cumbie’s meeting and is starting to approach that. So time will tell.’’

. . . I thought that Mays was supposed to be this burner on the outside and I wonder if this is a case where Mays may have the speed, but not the technique to play outside.  I'm not sure about this move . . . the defense apparently had a pretty good day yesterday and here's Tuberville:

"Offensively, we didn’t execute as well, but I thought it had something to do with the defense,’’ Tuberville said. "Today’s the first day we kind of let the defense go back and forth from zone to man (coverage) and really not (let the offense) know what was going on. But both teams competed well.’’

Special Teams Progress:  DMN's Mike Graham writes that special teams coach, Tommy Tuberville, is pleased with the progress of those guys we so rarely talk about:

"We're not too bad," he said. "I think our punters are doing well, we were a little worried earlier about our deep snapper, but our deep snappers have gotten much better. Our backup deep snapper got hurt and he didn't get a lot of work. Matt [Williams], our field goal kicker did well.

"There's a lot to special teams other than what we've worked on, but those are the things we wanted to get done in spring. We've got a lot of work to do in two-a-days."

Sounds like Tuberville likes Williams as the field goal kicker.

QB's Adjusting:  ESPN's David Ubben writes that the younger quarterbacks are adjusting after the injuries to Taylor Potts and Steven Sheffield.  Tuberville says that the senior quarterbacks will not be set back because of their injuries:

"It won’t set these guys back at all. They’re experienced and they understand it and they’ve been going to all the meetings and they’re at all the practices," Tuberville said. "I think it’s just going to set them back in their conditioning a little bit, but they’ll have a lot of extra work to do in June and July."

Tubs also talked about Seth Doege and Jacob Karam and their improving decision making:

"Quarterbacks have to understand the game and both are like coaches on the field, they’re eager to learn. Both have a lot more to learn than the two seniors, but I’ve been very impressed with their demeanor around the other players and their line of scrimmage communication skills, and their decision making," Tuberville said. "Both have really improved their decision making after the ball is snapped. You can’t teach that. You try to teach it, but it has to become natural for them."