Texas Tech football: What Tech still needs to add in 2021 recruiting class

LUBBOCK, TX - OCTOBER 20: The Texas Tech Red Raiders take the field before the game against the Kansas Jayhawks on October 20, 2018 at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas. Texas Tech defeated Kansas 48-16. (Photo by John Weast/Getty Images)
LUBBOCK, TX - OCTOBER 20: The Texas Tech Red Raiders take the field before the game against the Kansas Jayhawks on October 20, 2018 at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas. Texas Tech defeated Kansas 48-16. (Photo by John Weast/Getty Images) /

Halfway through the 2021 recruiting cycle, there remains plenty of work for the Texas Tech football program to do.

Every program’s recruiting class ebbs and flows during the course of any given recruiting cycle.  That’s why the current dry spell that the Texas Tech football program finds itself in is nothing to lose sleep over.

But the fact remains, there is a ton of work left to be done for Matt Wells and his staff.  And right now, their recruiting haul is among the lowest-rated in the Big 12.

With only eight players committed to the class of 2021, the second-fewest in the Big 12, Tech’s class sits at No. 9, ahead of only TCU, which has a mere six commits at this point.  What’s more, the Red Raiders haven’t picked up a 2021 commit since the first day of May when Oklahoma DT Solomon Wright picked the Red Raiders as his future team.

We can’t blame the current coronavirus pandemic on this slowdown either.  That’s because, in April, the first full month of the nationwide stay at home movement, Tech landed five members of the 2021 class.

The good news is that a wave of commitments is likely on the horizon and summer is typically when a host of high school prospects make their college decisions in order to get that out of the way prior to the start of their senior season.  That should ring true even in the oddest of summers, which 2020 is proving to be.

So where should we look for Tech to focus the rest of its recruiting efforts?  By looking at the numbers already in the mix, it’s not hard to figure out.

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One of the most glaring needs is along the offensive line.  Currently, Tech has just one lineman committed, 3-star tackle Jack Tucker from Argyle.

But with Tech almost certain to lose starting right guard Jack Anderson to the NFL after this season and tackle Zach Adams entering his senior year, Tech needs to bring some talent into the program.  That’s especially true being as the Red Raiders have signed just a total of five offensive linemen in the last two recruiting classes.

However, there are only five uncommitted players along the o-line who have offers from the Red Raiders according to 247Sports.  Thus, don’t be surprised to see a flurry of extra offers to linemen this summer.

Also critical for the Red Raiders is the running back position, which is yet to be addressed in this class.  Fortunately, there is a 4-star talent heavily in the mix at that spot.

According to Jarrett Johnson of RedRaiderSports.com, Tech is in the lead for Rockdale, TX RB Cam’Ron Valdez, the No. 50 player in Texas and the No. 17 running back in the nation.  This is the player Red Raider fans need to keep a close eye on because, as we discussed a few months ago, Valdez might be the most important recruit left on the board for Matt Wells and Co.

Running back is going to be an area of concern until Tech finally builds back up its stockpile of talent at that spot.  After not signing an RB in the 2019 class and only one in the class of 2020, the Red Raiders have just three scholarship RBs on the roster at this point.

Tech also needs to add two more receivers, one on the outside and one in the slot.  That’s never been tough for the program to accomplish in the “Air Raid” era and there are currently 18 receivers with offers from Wells, seven of which are not committed.  The good news at this position is that the only receiver already on board for the Red Raiders, Jerand Bradley, is a 4-star talent and the No. 48 player in Texas.

On the other side of the ball, there is a ton of work left to do.  In fact, the only spot Tech has sowed up is defensive end.  Tech still may bring in another DT to pair with Wright and when that happens, the DL recruiting will be in great shape.  In fact, being as the team now plays just a three-man line, the recruiting efforts on the defensive front might already be wrapped up with three players in the mix.

But those are the only three defensive players Tech has on board at the moment.  Therefore, the Raiders will likely look to add three linebackers and preferably four defensive backs.

Currently, there are 14 linebackers (seven outside and seven inside) with offers from the Red Raiders.  However, only half are uncommitted and the program’s top LB target, Collin Oliver, recently committed to Oklahoma State.

But it’s been in the secondary where Tech has handed out offers like candy on Halloween.  247Sports shows 30 DBs with offers from Tech, half of which are still in play.

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Thus, it’s likely to be a busy summer for Wells and his assistants, even if the normal summer recruiting circuit and evaluation period is shut down.  Therefore, it feels like another tidal wave of recruiting activity is destined to hit shore in Lubbock and when it does, the Red Raiders recruiting class will look vastly different than it does now.