Matt Wallerstedt is the first and only defensive coordinator thus far in the Kliff Kingsbury era. A defensive coordinator never managed to stay the same under Tommy Tuberville and the position did not feature a tremendous amount of success under Mike Leach.
“That’s big for them, two years having the same defensive staff in place with the same terminology,” said Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury at Monday’s Big 12 Football Media Day.“I can tell this spring they weren't thinking as much. They were actually flying around with the football.”
The Red Raiders will have solid depth at linebacker and have added some newcomers to the corps including freshman Dakota Allen and running back Kenny Williams. Williams could see significant time in all three phases of the game this season.
Tech linebacker Sam Eguavoen believes players are truly competing for starting positions.
“It’s really nice. It makes practice go smoother. The ones and twos, you really can’t tell a difference between them, just because everyone knows the scheme. They know the tricks of the trade.”
The last defensive coordinator to remain at Tech for more than one season was Ruffin McNeill, who is currently the head coach at East Carolina. McNeill became the interim head coach for the 2010 Alamo Bowl after Mike Leach was fired.
The current Pirates coach interviewed for the head coaching position at Tech, but was beaten out by Tommy Tuberville. Tuberville was never able to hold on to a defensive coordinator for more than a season with each one leaving for different reasons.
Eguavoen spoke about the comfort zone that comes with having the same coordinator for more than one season.
“We’re all comfortable. We have a good relationship with him. I mean, I can talk to him one-on-one. He’s a really great coach. He breaks down film for us. He lets us understand the game. We know what the plays are, the scheme and everything, so now we can just work on our technique and fundamentals and just become better players.”