A three-star prospect who chose Tech over more than 25 other offers including Arky, Auburn, A&M, Baylor, Oklahoma State and TCU. Keys has three years to play two.
Quick reaction: Monster pickup for Tech here. Keys' size, speed and athletic ability gives Tech a lot of options as to where to play him. Theoretically he could play either safety spot, corner or even LB. I like him at safety because of his tackling ability, coverage skills and instincts. He is very physical at the point of attack. He is also a very dangerous return man and could help out on both kick and punt coverage teams. This is the type of athlete you want to see Tech land to help turn around the D.
Devin Lauderdale (5-11, 175, 10.6-100), Navarro College (TX)
A three-star prospect, rated as the No. 51 WR of the 2013 class. Lauderdale originally signed with Tech out of high school, but was forced to spend the 2013 season at Navarro College. Lauderdale appears to be ready to go for 2014. He has four years to play three.
Quick reaction: Tech is getting a speedy playmaker to insert into a potent offense. With Eric Ward gone and the possibility of both Jace Amaro and Bradley Marquez moving on, Tech needs some receivers to step in and produce. Lauderdale is more ammo for Kingsbury's arsenal. He's capable of both taking a short screen, making defenders miss on the way to the house or simply beating corners off the line on routes down the field. Lauderdale will see the field no matter who returns, in my opinion, and will make an immediate impact.
OL Dontae Levingston (6-4, 285), Santa Monica College (CA)
Levingston is a three-star prospect who chose Texas Tech over Kansas and others. His signing softens the blow of losing commit Drew Sarvary to Florida earlier today. Levingston has three years to play two.
Quick reaction: Levingston is an athletic lineman, capable of getting to the next level for blocks on linebackers and defensive backs, but can pack an extra 20-25 pounds on his frame. He should come in and immediately challenge for a starting position and will at least add depth to a group that struggled at times in 2013.
DT Keland McElrath (6-5, 290), Coahoma CC (MS)
McElrath is a three-star prospect who committed to Texas Tech in early October and signed with the Red Raiders over offers from Kentucky, West Virginia and Western Kentucky. He has two years to play two seasons.
Quick reaction: McElrath gives Texas Tech some much needed depth on the defensive line. He's actually light on his feet for his size and shows good hustle tracking ball carriers down field. The bottom line is every defensive lineman is going to have to produce for Tech next year if they are going to end the annual swoon which has seen Big 12 opponents gash the Red Raiders on the ground. McElrath is an important piece to the puzzle.
Marcus Smith (6-3, 300), Highland CC (KS)
Smith is a two-star prospect who chose Tech over UAB and Western Kentucky. He committed just last weekend, shortly after visiting Lubbock. Smith has two years to play two.
Quick reaction: Perhaps Tech's biggest need is at defensive line with the departures of Kerry Hyder, Dennell Wesley and Dartwan Bush from an already undermanned group. Smith shows plenty of push at the line of scrimmage, with the ability to occupy double teams. Smith and many more big bodies are needed if Tech is to contend down the stretch in the Big 12 next season.