1. Fall camp opens this week. What are you hoping to learn from it? What are your expectations?
Alyssa: After the progress we heard about at Media Days I hope that keeps going. I expect the defense to come together and have significant progress.
Jarret: I like seeing the fresh fish out there, what the new team is going to look like with the new players.
Joe: I hope there are no injuries, particularly on the defensive side of the ball. I hope to learn that the freshman receivers are exceeding expectations and will contribute immediately.
Zach: I'm hoping to learn who the guys are at the outside linebacker spots. My expectations include that the DL will play much better football and that the receiving corps will be improved.
2. There are a handful of pretty competitive position battles to be sorted out between now and Sept. 5. Excluding quarterback, which battle intrigues you the most and why?
Alyssa: Right tackle.
Jarret: Yep, the right side of the offensive line.
Joe: McElrath/Fehoko interests me a great deal. McElrath is the veteran and he has some talent, but holding off a highly motivated Fehoko will not be all that easy.
Zach: I'll go Z-receiver and Dylan Cantrell vs. Reggie Davis. Davis appeared to take big steps forward during the spring but had the marijuana incident go down. He's a guy that's always shown flashes and it would be huge for the Red Raider offense if he could emerge as the answer. Cantrell is almost a lock for a SportsCenter Top 10 moment every game he plays in, but has trouble separating from defensive backs.
3. Tech just keeps stockpiling talent on the recruiting trail. Last week 2017 quarterback Xavier Martin along with 2016 offensive linemen Travis Bruffy and Zach Adams all pledged to the Red Raiders. Of the three, which one grabbed your attention most? Why?
Alyssa: I interview Xavier Martin and he is a really nice kid. He seems all about Texas Tech so I am interested to see how he develops as a quarterback over the next couple seasons he has at Steele.
Jarret: Adams because he's listed on Scout as 6-8, 320.
Joe: Zach Adams, no question. Particularly since the Unnameable One left, along with is East Coast-ace Robert Prunty, we haven't seen Tech working the Mid-Atlantic states, then practically out of nowhere comes a good lineman from Virginia. Caught me a bit flat-footed, I'm not too proud to admit.
Zach: Adams. It came out of nowhere.
4. Tech local media day is Tuesday. Joe and I will be there and have you covered, but if you could interview any coach ahead of camp who would it be and what is the top question you would ask?
Alyssa: I would talk to David Gibbs and ask for his honest answer on where the defense needs improvement during fall camp specifically.
Jarret: Kingsbury to ask him about Kingsbury Cemetery for Centex.
Joe: I'd like to interview David Gibbs and ask him if the number 82 means anything to him.
Zach: I'd interview Mike Smith. I'd ask him what some of the differences in defensive philosophy are between him and Coach Gibbs, and how they've reconciled those differences on defense. I'd also ask him about Pete's role on the defense and whether he will see more time in coverage or rush every down.
5. The coaches poll came out last week. Who is your most overrated/underrated teams on there?
Alyssa: I think LSU at No. 13 is pretty overrated and Michigan State the most underrated, should be in the top 5.
Jarret: Overrated: USC, Underrated: Arizona
Joe: Overrated: Baylor; Underrated: Mizzou
Zach: Overrated: TCU (lost some nice pieces and a whole lot of defensive production; will look a lot like 2012 WVU in my opinion). Underrated: Kansas State (their coach is a wizard).