Texas Tech Football Adds Five Signees To 2018 Class


Wednesday was the traditional National Signing Day for high school football recruits and the Texas Tech football program added five players to its 2018 class.

The first Wednesday in February had a different feel for college football fans in 2018.  Traditionally known on the college football calendar as National Signing Day for high school recruits, the February signing period lost quite a bit of luster this year due to the implementation of an early signing period in December for the first time in 2017.

Because of the change, most programs, Texas Tech included, had the majority of their 2018 signing class in the barn long before National Signing Day rolled around.  However, the Red Raiders did add five more signees on Wednesday to help round out the class.

The most heralded of the group was Houston, TX running back Ta’Zhawn Henry.  The nimble all-purpose back is rated as a three-star prospect according to 247Sports.com.  He was the No. 22 running back in Texas and had offers from Nebraska, TCU, Oregon State, Arizona, Baylor and a host of other programs.  Given the uncertainty in the Red Raider backfield this offseason, Henry could be a factor in new offensive coordinator Kevin Johns’ offense this fall.

Henry is joined in the 2018 class by fellow running back SaRoderick Thompson.  The Carrolton, TX product is also rated a three star prospect by 247Sports.  He could be a perfect compliment to Henry in the running back rotation as his 6-foot, 200-pound frame makes him a potential thunder to go with Henry’s lightning.

The rest of Wednesday’s Texas Tech football signees added much need depth on the defensive side of the ball.

The headliner is Xavier Benson of Texarkana, TX.  The 6-foot-3, 200-pounder is an outside linebacker / defensive end hybrid.  His size would suggest that he will be a pass rusher in the mold of current Texas Tech linebacker Tony Jones who made quite the splash in his first year at Texas Tech in 2017.  Don’t be surprised to see Benson redshirt this fall to allow him to pack more weight on his lanky frame.  The presence of Jones, a senior, affords Texas Tech the luxury of developing Benson for a year before pressing him into action.

Another versatile defensive signee is Wagoner, OK linebacker Patrick Curley.  The 6-foot-2, 215-pound Curley helped lead his team to three consecutive 4-A state titles, a run that included a 48-game winning streak. Curley told The Tulsa World that he had offers from Pittsburgh and Kansas State as well as a few others from non-power 5 schools.

Rounding out the day’s haul for the Red Raiders is Hitchcock, TX defensive end John Scott III.

The 6-foot-3, 255-pound recruit is a versatile athlete for his size.  In addition to playing tight end in high school, he is also quite the basketball player.

But Scott will have one job at Texas Tech, get to the quarterback.  Fortunately for the Red Raiders and Scott, there is not an immediate need for reinforcements along the defensive line.  Tech must replace only one starter from last year’s front seven, defensive tackle Mych Thomas, and there are a number of 2017 redshirts ready to make an impact in the defensive line rotation this season allowing Scott to take the year to add even more weight and refine his skills and technique.

Today’s signees bring the Texas Tech football 2018 signing class to 17 players.  The small size of the class, especially on the defensive side of the ball, was expected due to the large number of returning players the Red Raiders have in 2018, most of which are still juniors or sophomores.

Next: Tech Hires Johns As New Offensive Coordinator

Still, the coaching staff is likely to add some late JUCO or graduate transfers to the roster this spring however there is no need to stock up on such players this year as has been the case in years past.  Texas Tech fans should get to know today’s signees and keep an eye on their development over the next couple of years because before we know it, they will be the core of the Texas Tech football program.