Quarterback Rankings: NE StatePaper's Samuel McKeown is ranking all of the offensive and defensive units, ranking the quarterbacks yesterday with the Red Raiders checking in at #3 (shockingly ahead of TAMU, who probably has the best QB in the conference):
3. Texas Tech
Projected Starter: Taylor Potts (3,440/22/13) or Sticks (Steven) Sheffield (1,219/14/4)
Strengths: The Red Raiders have two proven starters, each of whom have played in, and won, important games. In a limited sample, Sheffield was brilliant, arguably the Big 12’s best quarterback. But he got hurt during a win at Nebraska and played sparingly thereafter. Potts looks more the part, but throws balls into coverage.
Weaknesses: Two potential starters doesn’t necessarily make one great player. Plus - what does Tech become without Mike Leach to coach the offense? The "Air Raid" system wasn’t complicated, so perhaps Potts and Sheffield don’t miss a beat.
5. Steven Sheffield, Texas Tech
Another small leap of faith here in betting Sheffield wins the starting job over Taylor Potts, who started the majority of the 2009 season. Sheffield's mobility may better suit Neal Brown's variation of the Air Raid, which gives quarterbacks the freedom to tuck-and-run at any moment, but durability has become a concern for the senior, who broke the same bone in his foot for the second time this spring after suffering the same injury last season.
Special Teams Previews: DMN's Mike Graham previews the special teams. Nothing really to note here, except that the special teams did improve, but Tuberville let go of the former special teams coach, Eric Russell, and Tuberville is in charge of all special teams.
More on the New Head Trainer: College Football Talk got some quotes from Mike Leach's lawyer, Ted Liggett, regarding the hire of Arnold Gamber. Not surprisingly, Liggett is asking some of the same questions that we asked yesterday, which is that this seems like an odd hire considering the everything that happened in December. In any event, here's Liggett
"One can taste the irony of this recent hire," Liggett, a graduate of Texas Tech and the university's School of Law, wrote to CFT via email. "Will Craig James demand the new trainer be dismissed based simply on the pending allegations against him? If Texas Tech is so dedicated to protecting their student-athletes from abusive coaches/trainers, etc., why make this move?
As I said yesterday, there appear to be some real questions about Chaz Ramsey, especially the chop-block on Glen Dorsey. If any Auburn fans can give us some more information on what happened, I think we'd all appreciate any additional back-story on Gamber and Ramsey. Again, there is litigation pending (Ramsey sued just about everyone, but his suit against Gamber is still on-going) and we're all innocent until proven guilty . . . right?
Tubs = CEO: AOL Fanhouse's Terrance Harris talked with head coach Tommy Tuberville about changing the culture at Texas Tech, including dressing like a sharp-dressed man:
"I think it's important that the players recognize, 'Here is a guy, he's changing things but he's acting like the CEO of our team or athletic department,'" Tuberville said to FanHouse from behind his desk. "I would love to wear shorts and stuff up here but I am obviously the front figure of selling this program, not just to people who are not Tech fans but to Tech fans right now ... alumni and faculty. I think you need show a sense of CEO pride. I did this at Auburn, I did it at Ole Miss the first few years. I always wore a tie because you never know who you are going to run into. First impressions are always big. My dad taught me that years and years ago.
"When people see me they will say, 'The guy may not know how to coach but he knows how to dress.'"
Former Red Raider in WSOP: ESPN Dallas' Jeff Caplan has a story on former Texas Tech Red Raider, Nathan Doudney (he eventually transferred to Gonzaga after not getting along with Bob Knight, shocking, I know).