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August 17, 2012

Wolf Diamonds Storylines

1. Camp continues. Texas Tech football is beyond the halfway point of camp and will go through another scrimmage Saturday morning.

The competition between the Red Raider offense and defense has been good on most days and it is clear the defense has more depth than a season ago.

But it's time for the Tech offense to take control of the team. The Red Raiders' strength this season will be the offense so it is natural the unit should ultimately get the upper hand in practices. After a very poor performance in a scrimmage, a performance where the defense truly whipped them, expect the offense to respond and begin an upward trend in consistency.

Seth Doege, like almost every quarterback does, struggled early in the fall camp practices as he got his timing down with his receivers. Timing and throwing motions change when people put their pads on so it takes some time to adjust. Doege is now fully adjusted and needs the offensive line to block and the receivers to catch.

The running game is about where it was a season ago before Eric Stephens was lost for the season.

The Tech offense should not take another step backward through the rest of fall camp and it would definitely be pleasant if the unit can piece together a complete performance in Saturday's scrimmage.

2. Survived the depth crisis. The Red Raiders were in panic mode less than a week ago when first team right tackle Terry McDaniel and first team left guard Beau Carpenter sustained concussions, two backups were out with concussions as well and Brian Thomas was struggling with conditioning and acid reflux issues.

Thomas has left the team, but the offensive line's frail depth situation is back to about as good as it's going to get this season.

If there was any good news in being forced to work out with McDaniel and Carpenter for a brief amount of time, it was the emergence of James Polk who strung together a few good practices filling in for Carpenter at left guard. Jared Kaster also filled in adequately at center as Alfredo Morales got bumped up to play with the ones for some amount of time.

Depth is going to be an issue this season at offensive line but there are a few more capable backups than what met the eye on the depth chart on the first day of fall camp.

3. The final week of camp. Tech will enter its final week of camp Monday and it's a big week.

With no classes until Aug. 27 the football staff can keep the players longer and the idea is that the players are solely focusing on football. That means this is the optimal time to insert the most complex parts of the playbook and practice it on the field.

The Red Raiders' Sept. 1 game against Northwestern State is coming quickly and most of the playbook should be taught by the conclusion of fall camp on Aug. 24.


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