Well, I think we’ve sorta clarified what we need a bit better now that the December signing day is over and done with and also now that we know that Keke Coutee is declaring for the NFL Draft (I’m happy for him and I hope that he does really well. Get drafted high and get paid.). Let’s go.
- Receiver is obviously a need, a significant need and truthfully, it was apparent with Coutee staying at Texas Tech and also with him leaving. I wonder if this means that Texas Tech will dip a bit more into the JUCO ranks for receivers. The only one that I know of is Tristen Wallace, the big receiver (6-3/235) who was committed to Ohio State, then signed with Oregon, was moved to receiver from quarterback, left Oregon and landed at TVCC in Athens. He’s caught 29 passes for 474 yards and 8 touchdowns.
- Former TAMU player Kirk Merritt is currently at EMCC, the former home of Dakota Allen for a year. Merritt is originally from Louisiana, and you wonder if someone like Juluke would have any interest in in Merritt. Before we get all excited about Merritt, he allegedly exposed himself to two football staffers, pled no contest and received two years of deferred adjudication. This worked great for Allen, but he was a known commodity for Texas Tech, while Merritt is not. Merritt (6-0/210) caught 52 passes for 628 yards and 4 touchdowns, while also providing some help in the punt return and kick off return categories.
- Another player that isn’t getting as much notoriety is Mike Williams (5-10/175), an inside receiver also from EMCC who caught 30 passes for 669 yards and 7 touchdowns. Williams is a December graduate, isn’t rated and has decent highlights. This might be a good depth option at the very least and from what I can tell, doesn’t come with the baggage that Merritt comes with.
- Obviously, pretty much every position on defense is going to need some help, maybe except for the secondary where the coaches took four freshmen last year (three additional JUCO guys in Vaughnte Dorsey, Octavious Morgan and Jaylon Lane). I feel like that’s a pretty good spot.
- Otito Ogbonnia (6-4/290) from Taylor in Katy was recently offered by Notre Dame and I still think Texas Tech has a good chance at him. Ogbonnia’s highlights are quality and for me, he would be a priority. He’s big tackle and I could seem him playing some end because of his height. He’s similar to Nelson Mbanasor in terms of his size and how he can play.
- A few coaches are following a defensive end Dylan Sanchez (6-3/24) from Fort Bend Marshall. This is an interesting case because he’s not rated and he doesn’t have a ton of highlights, but he’s a 2019 guy so it’s not for anything this year, just putting it on your radar.
- I think things continue to look good for all-purpose back Ta’Zhawn Henry (5-8/175), although he was offered by Nebraska over the Christmas break. An injury curtailed his senior year and I think he’s better than most folks give him credit.
- I’m not sure what you all are thinking in terms of other position groups, but it sure would be nice to see at the end of the February signing period: four defensive linemen; two linebackers; three secondary players. Remember that Kingsbury said that the class was going to be 20-22 and there’s already 12 signed up. I’m not sure if they were counting the scholarship loss of Coutee, but that may give them another scholarship that they didn’t have last week.
- Guys I know nothing about but have offers on the defensive side of the ball that are currently not committed: LB Isaak Togia (6-1/200; Garden Grove, CA); DT Shabazz Dotson (6-4/250; Cedar Hill, TX); DE Dorian Gerald (6-3/255; Santa Clarita, CA); DE Otito Ogbonnia (6-4/285; Katy, TX); DB JaQualyn Green (6-0/168; Arlington, TX); DB Cam Jones (6-2/187; Mansfield, TX); DB Antonio Gage (6-0/177; Dallas, TX); DB Eddie Smith (6-1/180; Slidell, LA); ATH Jaelyn Nolan (6-3/185; Brownfield, TX).