Texas Tech Football Things: First Spring Football Media Availability

Some coaches and players were made available for the first time this spring. Spring football is here.

Here is head coach Kliff Kingsbury and my non-transcript, which is admittedly really rough as I had to get the Morning Stake done, plus the basketball recap and this post too:

Kingsbury: . . . the 11 mid-year players has been a big help, I think it’s been productive. If we had a game today, Nic would start, he knows the system inside and out, he’ll get the reps with the 1’s to start. It is his work ethic, talented leader, great thrower of the football, wants to be in complete control, he’s going to play well for us, how hard he works is his best trait . . . we’ll kind of rotate everybody through and then take it from there . . . Cameron Batson is what you want, valedictorian here, has done great in the business school here, have a big role on offense and special teams, a good leader for the team . . . as a program, players included, we didn’t feel like we had a right to wear that logo, wasn’t up to par or Texas Tech standard, and we’ll earn it . . . it will be as a team to earn it together . . . different color shirts: that was an idea that coach Whitt had, different levels, everyone starts at the bottom, you earn it with on the off the field things, the purpose is to single some people out . . . dirty army brown is the lowest level, with grey, white, black and scarlet in-between . . . Ian Sadler is no longer with the team, he will medical redshirt, he played on it all last year, doctor’s orders, he is still in school and graduate . . . mid-year enrollees: having that many has helped, they can lean on each other, we have a good, veteran group coming back, the power of the herd has helped them . . . they will know what to expect, I think those freshman might be a bit wide-eyed, but we expect them to slide back in . . . consistency on offense, can’t have 3 games where you don’t show up, we have to figure that deal out, and being more consistent in practice, precision and detail, have to be better at running back, up front and wide out, can’t leave it up to the quarterback to bail us out . . . Brandon Jones and Jabbar Juluke: they are both former high school coaches, they do a good job reaching players all over our team, that’s been huge for us . . . we had interviewed him the year before, so when the time came, he was a name we had on our short list . . . Terrance Jamison, new defensive line coach: I think he has a young guys, all of those guys will be here for multiple years, coach Patrick did a good job of building that room . . . we’re just going to flip it around, Paul Stawarz, Madison Akamnonu and Terance Steele will be up there, we’ll see where they all fit, Tony won’t go with the 1’s to start, he’ll probably be starting with the 2’s and Stawarz to start at center . . . advice for Patrick Mahomes: the biggest thing is don’t try to talk about things you don’t know, don’t try to act smart and the guys on the other side of the table will call you out on it . . . Travis Bruffy and Bailey Smith: Travis is up to 305 and Bailey is 300, Bruffy is tackle and Bailey at left guard . . .

Yesterday, it was announced that players AND coaches (notice that Kingsbury isn’t wearing a Double-T logo either) could not wear the Double-T logo at the football facility, LAJ’s Don Williams has some more detail on the situation as head coach Kliff Kingsbury discussed:

“As a program, players included, we didn’t feel like we earned the right to represent that logo that means a lot to a lot of people,” Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury said Wednesday. “The way we played certain games and the inconsistency that we showed wasn’t up to par and wasn’t up to Texas Tech standards. So we’re going to earn that this spring, this summer and then going into fall camp.”

And the color of the shirts mean something, so the players start off with a brown shirt and can move up or down from there.

RRS’s Will McKay has an excellent breakdown of Kingsbury’s media session, defensive coordinator David Gibbs and defensive line coach Terrance Jamison. Here’s a small bit from Gibbs, but go read the whole thing.

-I also asked the DC what he thinks about the defensive line unit heading into the spring:

“It’s a good room. It really is a good room. How good of football players they’re going to be has yet to be seen, but a bunch of big body kids that have gotten bigger and stronger since we got here, even though we only signed one defensive lineman, which a bunch of people have informed me about since singing day. We’re excited to watch this group we’ve got go out there, and Coach Jamison is excited. We’ll need all those big bodies, which ya’ll know with going against our offense this spring with as fast as our offense goes. Look forward to watching those guys running around.”

-Coach Gibbs was asked about his “Must see in person” philosophy before offering players. His thoughts:

“Obviously in recruiting, it’s not really about who you don’t get. It’s about who you do get and have on campus, and the process of trying to eliminate mistakes, if you can see a young man practice or do any sort of athletic activity, that only enhances your chance of not making a mistake. We try to hold back, and a lot of people give me slack about it, which I really couldn’t care less. We can’t miss. When you’re trying to rebuild a defense, you can’t have guys, first of all, who don’t want to be there, and second of all who aren’t good enough to be there, and I think we’ve cleaned it up. I think you’ll see a different looking team. Now, at the end of the day we’ve got to go play good, which I’ve said, but at the end of the day I think you’ll be impressed with these new guys we’ve got out there, and hopefully they practice well.”

And how about that quote, “When you’re trying to rebuild a defense, you can’t have guys, first of all, who don’t want to be there, and second of all who aren’t good enough to be there, and I think we’ve cleaned it up.”

Well, that’s saying something. Again, there’s lots there and I can’t summarize it, so go read the whole thing.

LAJ’s Don Williams also talked with linebackers coach Zac Spavital and some of the young guys will receive plenty of opportunity this spring:

Specifically, that has to do with four sophomores: Brayden Stringer and Johnathon Picone, 2016 signees who played last season as true freshmen, and Jamile Johnson and Christian Taylor, 2015 signees who redshirted that fall and converted from defensive backs.

“The thing that’s real noticeable is the weight (gains),” Spavital said Wednesday. “Everybody’s over 220, including Jamile and Christian, who came in as safeties.”

Spavital said Johnson is in the range of 232 to 235 pounds, Picone also is in the 230 to 235 range, Stringer has beefed up to 226 and Taylor’s at 220.

“The two young guys that did not play that much last year that made that transition, Christian and Jamile, I’m excited to see how they handle all the reps they’re going to get,” Spavital said. “And then Brayden Stringer’s a guy that you can either love him or hate him. A lot of places, at 205 pounds, he probably wouldn’t have played, but he played some valuable snaps. He’s got some instincts and an attitude, that true linebacker mentality.


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