Although we have a week left until the February 1st signing day, Texas Tech has already done most of their damage for this class. Finishing in the top-25 in the country and making school history as early as Coach McGuire and the staff did was impressive.
Add in a few transfers at key positions, and we can really start to analyze this class as a whole and seeing the approach that was taken.
One key position group that was targeted was the safety position. Three guys were added as high schoolers, and we have one more coming in as a transfer. The safety position in this defense is important because they move around the field and are versatile enough for us to stay in a base formation while being able to drop one of them down into the slot.
Both Jordan Sanford and Brenden Jordan should be homeruns in the secondary. The range that both of them displayed in high school as well as the ability to crash in on the run and take smart angles is something that’s only going to get better. They were given four-stars for a reason and could be a tandem to watch for the next 3-4 years.
The other guy that I am excited about is the C.J. Baskerville, the transfer from San Diego State. He’s the definition of a versatile safety that has plenty of experience and two years left of eligibility. He has lined up in the box as well as at free safety, and has seen a hefty amount of snaps in the slot as well. This is the type of guy that we will need to step up with Reggie Pearson Jr. transferring to Oklahoma and Marquis Waters declaring for the draft.
The other key position that was addressed with the EDGE defender. Isaiah Crawford has been committed to Tech for a while now and has a lot of promise with his 6’4” frame being able to bend around tackles and disrupt the offense. Dylan Spencer is a guy that we stole from some high-caliber schools that would usually beat us out with ease for guys like this. The Red Raiders also added some experience in Steve Linton, who finished with four sacks last year and will add some versatility as a pass rusher.
If I had to pick one position group that I would’ve liked to have seen be addressed more, the Tight End position comes to mind. With two guys already solidified at the position, I would’ve liked to have seen us grab someone in the freshman class that could take a year or two to learn from them and develop in the system. This might be me nitpicking, but Mason Tharp was a guy that we developed behind a solid veteran and he’s started to come into his own and make huge plays for us.
The other position that I think we could’ve addressed more was cornerback, specifically a boundary corner. We’re lucky to be returning the duo of Rayshad Williams and Malik Dunlap, but behind them isn’t much experience. There are some guys that are tweeners who could slide over to that position, but I was hoping to see us find a guy or two in the transfer portal that we could trust to fill in if one of the aforementioned guys were to be injured.
Kobee Minor transferring really hurt our depth as he was poised to see more playing time and become a huge piece of this defense. We have some young guys that I’m excited about, and they will be thrown into the fire this season early and often.
This recruiting class will be the start of things to come for the Red Raiders. I’m looking forward to seeing these guys develop and even see the field in some cases this year. The safety position as well as the defensive line/edge rushers are areas where we might see these guys early because of how talented they are and I can’t wait.