The Morning Stake

The Morning Stake: April 21st

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Texas Tech Baseball

Full-on preview and weekend thread coming up later this morning.

Texas Tech Basketball

The LAJ looks at big-man Malik Ondigo, who is visiting Texas Tech today and over the weekend. Ondigo has Texas Tech, along with Purdue, Boston College, Colorado and Nevada as his top five remaining schools:

“They’re really interested in me,” he said of Texas Tech. “Coach Beard, in his first year in the Big 12, got some big wins and that’s impressive. The Big 12 is hard to play in and get wins.”

Ondigo said his visit will run from Friday through Sunday. During that span, he’s expected to meet with the coaching staff, take in an Oklahoma State-Texas Tech baseball game and hopes to meet a few players from the current Red Raiders squad.

“They have a great recruiting class coming in and great academics, too,” Ondigo said of the research he’s done on the Red Raiders. “I’m excited to see the type of style they play and see what else I can learn.”

Texas Tech Football

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 LAJ’s Don Williams talked with Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt about the new ban on satellite camps and that this will hurt Texas Tech:

“I think the summer camp piece of legislation, while I believe in the big picture of college football that will be a positive, it’s a disadvantage to Texas Tech,” Hocutt said, “given the fact you can only have camps now located on your campus or in your playing facility.

“Obviously, there has been an advantage to us to get into the Dallas-Fort Worth and the Houston markets with satellite camps, that now we’re not going to be afforded the opportunity to do that. That was one that, while I understand the rationale behind the legislation, will have a less than positive effect on Texas Tech.”

The other thing that’s mentioned is that Kingsbury would like to see a cap on the staff sizes, as some programs non-field personnel, such as analysts, seems like an unfair advantage (he’s not wrong) and that does seem like something that should be uniform.

ESPN’s Max Olson looks at RB Da’Leon Ward as a player “on the spot”:

The rookie rushed for 98, 93, 97 and 82 yards in his final four games last season and became the first freshman to lead the program in rushing since 1999. He proved to be a shifty back and a hard runner who brought more balance to an offense that was content to throw the ball 50 times a game.

“Our biggest deal was, let’s work on more explosive plays,” coach Kliff Kingsbury told reporters this spring. “He was good at that 5-, 6-yard gain. We need 10- , 15- , 20-yard gains in the run game. That’s been our emphasis with him. Let’s improve our speed.”

Also from ESPN’s Max Olson, as he talked with IR Keke Coutee, who says his goal right now is to break Michael Crabtree’s record of 22 touchdowns in a season:

“Any one of them can really have a big day on any given day, based on coverage and what we’re getting offensively,” coach Kliff Kingsbury said. “Keke is definitely a guy we’re going to try to push the ball to more this year with his ability. But this is a very solid receiving corps. Any one of them can hurt you if you’re trying to take away somebody else.”

The last time the Red Raiders took the field, it was Coutee’s day. He burned Baylor for 221 yards on eight catches in a 54-35 victory, highlighted by a 35-yard touchdown grab he hauled in like an outfielder and an 80-yard spinning catch and run for another score.

“It’s a perfect offense for me. I couldn’t play in a better offense,” Coutee said. “We’ve been the best offense in the nation two years in a row. For a small guy like me to be able to run around and make guys miss, this is the perfect offense.”

ESPN’s Mel Kiper, Jr. says that Patrick Mahomes is just a fun player to watch:

Patrick Mahomes, Texas Tech: This kid is just entertaining — he has no conscience when it comes to throwing the football. Now, that means he’ll throw some picks (he had 25 over the past two seasons), but he’ll also throw some 60-yard touchdown bombs. Mahomes (6-foot-2, 225 pounds) is not going to dink and dunk down the field like a lot of spread quarterbacks; he’ll throw it downfield early and often. Over the past two seasons, he had 137 completions that went for 20 yards or more, which ranked No. 1 in FBS (likely first-round pick Deshaun Watson was No. 2 with 129, and 2018 prospect Mason Rudolph was No. 3 with 120). Projection: First round, maybe as high as Arizona at No. 13.


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