Pressers. Texas Tech held their coach and play press conferences yesterday and DoubleTFaithful will be here later today to pullquote the items from head coach Kliff Kingsbury, IR Bradley Marquez and LB Sam Eguavoen. Also speaking were coordinators Matt Wallerstedt and Eric Morris and I did do a non-transcript for both coordinators as there was some news there that I wanted to cover.
Matt Wallerstedt: I think after watching the tape, it is never as bad and never as good as it seems. I think the kids played really hard, Obviously, they ran the ball more than we want to give up. The total number was 178 with 53 rushes and our goal was 3.3 or less and we held them to 3.3 on the evening. So you look at that stat, it doesn't look like we did a good job against the run, but did better than we thought. The last two drives put a bad taste in our mouth. Our inside linebacker got picked, went to the well calling man one too many times, we got rubbed off and got a cheap one on the sideline. The third and 9 on the next drive, played zero coverage, Justis Nelson got beat deep for 52 yards. We're living and learning.
Eric Morris: Obviously a lot of mistakes on film. The outside guys, a couple of those guys had the deer in headlight look. Bradley Marquez graded out as the best receiver on tape, played 65 snaps, he's a great point of reference in my room. It's [Davis Webb's] 7th start, obviously, he made a couple of wrong decisions, he'd love to have both of those throws back, we haven't seen those throws in camp. He settled down and put the ball on the money a couple of times. Reginald [Davis] got tired, his technique broke down and his footwork was bad. Dylan [Cantrell] needs to play more. D.J. [Polite-Bray] and Devin [Lauderdale] did a lot of good things. We've got to get them more consistent. We'll throw Cameron Batson at outside receiver and see if he can go a little bit.
As an aside, when and if you get to read or watch the Eguavoen presser, he sounds awful, truly disappointed about how he and the defense played. You could tell he's taking this hard, that's a good thing. Let's get to the news.
* In Kingsbury's press conference, he said that DT Rika Levi was day-to-day and the damage wasn't as bad as initially thought. It wouldn't surprise me at all if Levi sat out the UTEP game to get fully healthy and be ready by Arkansas. Honestly, both UTEP and Arkansas run a ton, so it would be really help to have him both weeks, but I'd rather have a fully healthy Levi in two.
* Cameron Batson is going to play inside and outside receiver. I think Morris and the offensive staff are pretty much done waiting for guys to try to get open, especially on the outside. Batson is a smart kid and can probably handle learning both inside and outside spots.
* As noted above, the coaching staff wants to put in Dylan Cantrell more this week.
* We don't get to see or hear all of the coordinator interviews. It has always been this way and there is no transcript of them (most of the time) and felt like Wallerstedt was very much trying to keep the positivity flowing with the comments that were on video. I've usually maintained that a head coach has one time to go to the well to just ream his team per year. If a coach does that more than once a year, players usually go deaf to the idea of a coach just being mad all of the time. Players tune that out if that's what happens. I agree with Wallerstedt in that it's okay to be disappointed, but not mad. Not after the first game. He's probably got to save that bite at the apple for later in the season. My initial reaction was to just be angry and mad, but it's not the time for that. Not yet.
Notebook. The LAJ has a notebook of things and there are some things that were added that weren't included in the video that we got to see. Wallerstedt spoke about the issue with having Levi out:
"Demetrius Alston's giving us everything he's got at that 3-technique (defensive tackle), but truly he's a defensive end," Wallertstedt said. "Jackson Richards gives you everything he's got and he's 270 pounds. With those two in, we're playing aggressive and hard, (but) still getting moved around like we saw last year."
Here's the thing that I just don't understand. If these players are really out of position at the spots they are at, then why are they continuing to line up in those spots? If Alston is really a defensive end, are all of the other defensive tackle options that poor that forces Alston to play defensive tackle? Texas Tech is clearly getting overwhelmed at the line of scrimmage. This is the most frustrating thing for me is that guys have and are playing out of position and I guess what is being said is that the back-up options are that much worse that they can't make an impact.
Also of note is that LB Chris Payne was in a jersey and on the sideline on Saturday and is on track to graduate. Payne could be a late-season add when he recovers from his torn Achilles' that he suffered in the spring.
Miscellaneous. News broke yesterday that Texas QB David Ash will not start again BYU and you're looking at Tyrone Swoopes or Jerrod Heard playing. If there is an ounce of humanity for anything, if a kid is showing these types of issues for two years in a row, someone has to step in and shut it down for the player. It's just a game . . . you'll see a ton of Big 12 power rankings this time of year and the SAEN has their Big 12 rankings with Texas Tech at #7 . . . Sports on Earth Dave Brown has a week one notebook for all of college football and it was good to read (with a Texas Tech mention and not in a good way) . . .