Throughout the summer, we will be taking a look inside the state of the Texas Tech football program. We will analyze each position as a whole and look at the players that have left the team, the current starting players, and how each position is set up for the future. This week, we analyze the wide receiver position that has had its share of unexpected departures but still remains deep.
This position has had a numerous amount of recent stars like Eric Ward, Jace Amaro, and Jakeem Grant. With the pass happy air raid offense, WRs have found themselves the primary beneficiaries. Last season Jonathan Giles was the biggest benefactor putting up over 1100 yards and 13 TDs, however his production decreased at the end of the year. Keke Coutee became the top WR by the end of the year including a monster 220 yard, 2 TD day to finish the year.
Jonathan Giles’ transfer was the big news of the offseason for this unit, however this impact has been overstated. Giles tailed off last year and was moved to the 2nd team offense during spring practices. Tony Brown also decided to leave the program, given his low production from the last two seasons, this wasn’t much of a surprise. As far as the WRs on the roster, there seems to be a solid group of 4 to lead the way. Keke Coutee, Cam Batson, Dylan Cantrell, and Derrick Willies seem to be the guys going forward and each are dangerous threats. Willies and Cantrell’s size will make them dangerous redzone threats while Coutee and Batson will be dangerous threats in open space. The strength of this unit is their depth. Not only do all four starters have the potential to go for 800 yards but the second unit has talent as well. Quan Shorts and TJ Vasher lead this group and will be key in the rotation to keep this unit going. If this team is going to have any success this year, it will be behind this group.
As solid as this group is now, the future is bleak for this unit. Five seniors are graduating and Coutee won’t be far behind. With only a few underclassmen on roster, there will be an influx of WRs coming to Lubbock in the next couple years. Myron Mitchell, a JuCo transfer, will be coming in next offseason, and with all these receivers graduating we will see a whole new group of studs. There will be a major rebuild at this position starting in 2018 so it is important for this unit to strike now while the iron is hot.