There’s less than two months before the start of the Red Raider’s football season and less than one month away from the start of official practice. Today, we’re going to talk about a seldom-talked about position, fullback. The classic bruiser fullback of the 1990s and 2000s that was essentially a faster blocker is gone and now, they have been replaced with tight end-like players who can catch the ball or have been phased out completely. The Red Raiders currently have four fullbacks on the roster, two of which played last year and two who I think could make an impact down the road for the team. Who will get the first snaps against Ole Miss on September 1st? That’s what I’m hoping to find out.
#41 Tyler Carr - 6’4” 260 lbs Sophomore, Amarillo, Texas
Carr originally walked on to the team as a defensive end and was originally going to be redshirted last season. With the injury to Mason Reed, who we will talk about next, Carr switched positions and has played fullback ever since. He was the primary fullback the final five games of the season after the injury to Reed and caught 2 passes for 14 yards in the bowl game against South Florida. He comes in as the favorite to get most of the snaps at fullback this year.
#29 Mason Reed - 6’2” 225 lbs Senior, Cisco, Texas
Reed has the experience over Carr but was injured for the second half of last season. Reed came into last season as the starting fullback and kept that role until he was injured. He ran the ball 7 times for 25 yards and caught the ball 3 times for 28 yards and one touchdown this season. Reed has also been an influential player on special teams, getting four tackles this past season. I believe that Reed will be the favorite to unseat Carr from the starting spot early in the season, as Reed is a much more athletic runner and a better receiver out of the backfield.
#40 Connor Killian - 6’2” 235 lbs Sophomore, Keller, Texas
Killian is looking to get his first action as a Red Raider as he was redshirted in 2016 and was injured all of last year, He played tight end until his senior year of high school when he was moved to linebacker. He walked on to Tech for his ability on the offensive side of the ball as well as his deep snapping ability. He will most likely not get any snaps at fullback this year due to the two aforementioned players but he could get some snaps on special teams.
#46 Henry Howard - 6’0” 210 lbs Redshirt Freshman, San Angelo, Texas
Howard is the final fullback on the roster, and the one with the least experience at the position as he was also a linebacker coming out of high school. He is the brother of current Texas Tech defensive end Eli Howard, and will be looking to make an impact on special teams for the Red Raiders this year. I think he will eventually get time at the fullback position as he is an athletic guy who will one day be effective on offense.
This battle will be one of the more interesting ones going into camp. No it won’t be as high profile as the quarterback battle, but it will be an important one going into camp. I think in the end, Mason Reed will win the battle. Tyler Carr will be a good fullback for the Red Raiders down the road and I believe he came in and did a great job filling in for Reed last year but, Carr doesn’t have the athletic ability of Reed and isn’t seen as much of a weapon on offense.
Who do you think will be the primary fullback for the Red Raiders? Let us know in the comment section below!