After announcing Lee Hays would be departing his coaching staff, Kliff Kingsbury has found a replacement for the offensive line coach vacancy. In comes Brandon Jones who had previously been with the Cal Golden Bears. Jones is a familiar face to Texas Tech.
Jones played center on the offensive line for the Red Raiders and started 22 games during his college career. In his junior year he was named an All-Big 12 honorable mention and his senior year in 2006, he became a Rimington Award candidate. Jones was a part of some significant wins for Tech, including the come-from-behind win in the Insight Bowl vs. Minnesota.
After he received a degree in communication studies, Jones became an offensive line assistant coach for Tech from 2007-2008. During that time, the Red Raiders finished in the Top 25 after both seasons. He coached some great talent in players like Brandon Carter and Louis Vasquez.
After Tech, Jones went on to be the running backs and tight ends coach at Sam Houston State. He then moved on to be the offensive line coach at East Carolina and Cal. At these two stops, he left the offensive line in better shape than when he first took over.
At East Carolina in his first season, the Pirates finished the season ranked 8th in passing, 16th in scoring, and 25th in total offense. At Cal, he turned an offensive line that was ranked 82nd in sacks allowed into one that was ranked 22nd by the end of the 2016 season. Cal's offense, lead by Davis Webb, became one of the best in country.
Now Jones is coming back to where it all started. While Texas Tech was ranked number one in passing offense in 2016, the offensive line allowed 30 sacks and pressure seemed to constantly be on Patrick Mahomes. With a different quarterback in Nic Shimonek, who is more of a pocket passer, the line needs to improve in pass protection. This group also needs to improve in run blocking. Tech was ranked 123rd in rushing and couldn't rely on the ground game to move the chains nearly as much as their passing attack.
Similar to what he has walked into before, Jones has an opportunity to improve an offensive line that needs help. He has some returning talent to help him accomplish this in players like Tony Morales, Terence Steele, and Paul Stawarz. He will also have the pleasure of developing talented incoming freshmen Jack Anderson, Dawson Deaton, and Will Farrar.
Texas Tech is happy to have you back as a member of the Red Raider family Brandon Jones!