In what ended up being the quietest National Signing Day that I can ever recall. One where there were no flips, good or bad. No surprise commits and no drama.
Maybe the plan all along.
In looking back at the 2015 season, it was one where we saw very little emotion from head coach Kliff Kingsbury. His only outburst was against Arkansas, where after the game, Kingsbury commented that Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema said that he would whip any spread team’s ass at a high school coaches convention and Kingsbury took personal offense for something that he helped pioneer with Leach and progress on his own, both here and at Texas A&M. Not to mention, it was in front of Texas high school coaches, obviously Bielema wanted to influence those that help recruits make decisions about where they go to college.
That was the highlight on our end. No outrage and very little celebration, maybe we saw a smile crack after beating Texas at home on some terrific and awfully gutsy play-calling.
There were no splashy uniforms this year. There were only throw-back uniforms, perhaps appropriately, there were only throw-back uniforms. No grey/gray. No hombre.
The only other uniform surprise was all red, which really isn’t all that big of a surprise considering the namesake.
Once the season ended, there were three defensive coaches that were let go almost as soon as the season ended. Their replacements have taken some time to find and finding them has maybe been a bit bumpy, but there’s been been almost no swirling rumors or wild speculation about those position coaches.
Then, the silly-season began, I thought for sure that we would hear stories from the recruiting trails about Kingsbury dabbing with all of the high school players. More tired quotes about how Kingsbury is so good looking that he’ll flirt with your mom and make everyone blush and the national media gets a kick out the whole story because that’s what happens. Kingsbury is a Ken-doll more than a coach, one where they want to highlight the things that are seemingly unimportant rather than the coaching aspect of who Kingsbury is.
In retrospect, 2015 was about shedding some stereotypes more than anything else. There were certain things that Kingsbury could control in 2015. The way he presented himself. The way that he presented the team. The way the team acted in the media. Those things he could control and at least for 2015, Kingsbury was done with the flash of being the young and hip head coach. That went away. Knowing Kingsbury from afar, this move in 2015 was almost assuredly calculated on Kingsbury’s part.
The youngest and hippest head coach in college football didn’t do the latest craze, dabbing. If I had to guess, it most likely was not because he didn’t know what it was, but probably because he told recruits that if they want young and hip, that coach is gone. Young and relatable and hard-working. Yeah, that’s right here.
For me, it seemed like that without question, Kingsbury needed to change some things and it started at the top. It was time to put away those superficial things that don’t mean very much and focus on the most important things as much as possible.
Of course, Texas Tech couldn’t shed the bad defense stereotype (because it was true for the umpteenth year in a row), but I think Kingsbury and this team grew up quite a bit from the summer to the season. And now, we get multiple coaches, who are friends, fired at the end of the season, a entirely new strength and conditioning program and hopefully a new outlook and some consistency with what David Gibbs had done last year.