April 22nd Practice Report

The Texas Tech Red Raiders practiced under an intense West Texas sun with temperatures nearing 95 degrees as practice wore on. Two parts of the team are starting to suffer attrition while another unit great depth, especially during the team portion of practice. Come inside for the RaiderPower practice report from Wednesday April 22nd.

Practice Observations

• To get right into it, the defensive line is in trouble. Brandon Sesay was out again today, likely concentrating on academics. Brandon Sharpe and Daniel Howard were also absent. For those counting, that left two scholarship defensive ends (Ryan Haliburton and Sandy Riley) and four scholarship defensive tackles (Chris Perry, Rajon Henley, Colby Whitlock, and Richard Jones). A unit that had such amazing depth last season is suddenly looking very thin.

Lyle Leong practiced, though on in the non-contact portions, while Baron Batch was also held out of practice for the second day in a row.

Harrison Jeffers torched the defense again today, this time on a 40 yard touchdown from a screen pass. Jeffers broke a half-dozen tackles on the way to the end zone and flashed some of his sprinter speed.

Marlon Winn as again absent from practice, making the starting unit (from offensive right to left) was Chris Olson, Mickey Okafor, Shawn Byrnes, Brandon Carter, and Terry McDaniel.

• An interesting move in the second team offensive line, David Neill was the second string left tackle and looked very good at that position. Neill has played across the offensive line and it seems that he might have found a niche playing tackle.

Cody Davis and Franklin Mitchem are beginning to look like Big XII safeties.

• Chris Wallace, the long-tenured scout team linebacker, had a strong day of practice.

Taylor Charbonnet spent some time with the starting defensive unit today, and looked very good. Charbonnet still has a case of the "drops" from time to time, but if he can get his hands on an interception cleanly there is no one in the Big XII that can catch the speedy corner.

Adrian Reese looks so different from what he was able to do at the start of Spring practice, it is an almost amazing transition. Reese had several brilliant catches during today's practice, including a phenomenal catch down the sidelines for almost 30 yards.

• Ed Britton also had a good day. It is nearly comical watching Britton and Reese as they rotate through. One short and speedy, the other tall and uncoordinated, but together they could form one of the most dynamic receiving duos in the Big XII.

Detron Lewis had another strong day of practice. His ability to catch the ball with his hands is astounding to watch.

Taylor Potts and Stephen Sheffield both had better days of practice today. Sheffield also threw a brilliant pass as he was rolling right back to his left to a wide open Cornelius Douglas.

Blake Kelly had a quiet day, but he should see the field as the "swing" slot receiver, playing both H and Y. Grant Walker did something similar in the 2007 season.

Austin Zouzalik is also forcing his way into the rotation, either at Y or H. Tramain Swindall seems to have the starting nod at H locked down while Zouzalik, Kelly, and Adam James are vying for back-up time at that position.

Awards

Offensive player of the day: Adrian Reese

Catch of the day: Detron Lewis with a tough catch in the middle of the field.

Defensive player of the day: Taylor Charbonnet

Defensive play of the day: Chris Wallace blasting running back Harrison Jeffers in the backfield for a loss.

Quotes

"Why jump a $5 route to give up a $20 route?!?!?!"- Defensive Coordinator Ruffin McNeil

"Knock his belly button up to his throat Easy Ed."- Head Coach Mike Leach


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