Friday, the Texas Tech football program lost 2021 defensive tackle Solomon Wright to Arkansas, further putting a damper on what has been a disappointing summer on the recruiting trail.
Every year, each program across the nation is going to see a recruit or two decommit unexpectedly. Some of those decisions are easy to swallow as they come from marginal players. But on Friday, the Texas Tech football program was hit with a defection that stung.
6-foot, 270-pound Oklahoma defensive tackle Solomon Wright announced on Twitter that he has committed to Arkansas after being pledged to Texas Tech since May. Interestingly, on his announcement, he made no mention of his previous commitment to Matt Wells and Co.
Rated the No. 41 defensive tackle in the nation and the No. 13 player in Oklahoma, Wright also holds offers from Iowa State, Oklahoma State, Kansas, and Missouri among others. He’s coming off a season in which he amassed 124 tackles, including 51 for loss, and 14 sacks to bring his career totals to 263 tackles and 28 sacks.
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This is not the news that Red Raider fans were hoping for on the recruiting trail. In what’s been a disappointing summer, those in scarlet and black are growing concerned about the 2021 class and what it might suggest about the ability of the Wells regime to recruit to Lubbock.
Currently, the Red Raiders have the second-to-last class in the Big 12. What’s even more concerning is that it sits just No. 75 nationally. And with only eight players in the fold, the class is also the second-smallest in the conference.
That was not a concern back in the spring when Wells was on a hot streak. From the start of April until Wright’s commitment on May 1st, the Red Raiders landed six verbal pledges to push the class to No. 4 in the Big 12 and into the top 30 nationally.
But since then, Tech has added just one player, JUCO DT Demeco Roland. Now one has to wonder if Roland’s recruitment picked up as Tech began to sense that Wright was leaning towards the Razorbacks.
WIth Roland in the mix, Tech might still be in a decent position at DT, especially given that starter Jaylon Hutchings has three more seasons of eligibility. But this loss signals something more concerning about the program’s recruiting efforts as a whole.
Remember that Arkansas is a program in worse shape than Tech is right now, at least in terms of what has taken place on the field in recent years. Coming off a 2-10 season that saw head coach Chad Morris ousted after 10 games, the once-proud program has won just two games in each of the past two seasons.
But the Hogs were able to steal this key recruit from the Red Raiders and losing players of this caliber is not something Wells can afford, especially in recruiting battles against programs that are as down in the dumps as the Razorbacks have been. The good news is that he still has time to salvage this class but with Wright jumping ship, the momentum on the recruiting trail continues to head in the wrong direction.