This program needs an offensive line overhaul
There’s no question that one of the biggest storylines from the first half of the season has centered around the offensive line. Unfortunately, though, the Red Raiders are still searching for answers at one of the most important position groups on the field.
In fact, regardless of what happens over the next six games, the Red Raiders are going to need a complete overhaul of the line this offseason. Until that gets done, Tech is going to be fighting an uphill battle against almost every opponent.
Remember, McGuire and Co. tried to upgrade the talent at that position this past offseason. Tech brought in Cole Spencer from Western Kentucky and he was expected to be this team’s best lineman but a knee injury has cost him this season. He is expected back for 2023 but his absence this season has been felt even though he’s never suited up for the Red Raiders.
Meanwhile, New Mexico transfer Cade Briggs has been a huge disappointment. Losing the starting center job to walk-on JUCO transfer Dennis Wilburn, Briggs has not seen the field in any meaningful way after being expected to be a key contributor.
Tackle Ty Buchanan has been merely a backup after transferring in from USC. But recently, the redshirt freshman was moved from right to left tackle to compete with the struggling Caleb Rogers for that job. Thus, we could see Buchanan get some meaningful snaps in the second half of the season as he adjusts to life on the left side of the line.
Oklahoma State transfer Monroe Mills has started every game this year at right tackle. That makes him the most impactful transfer OL in the 2022 class. But the redshirt freshman has had some growing pains as he’s received his first opportunity to start at the college level.
So it isn’t as if Tech didn’t try to address the offensive line over the offseason. In fact, three of the starters in 2022 were not with the program last season. But that rebuild has not gone well as the Red Raiders are last in the Big 12 and 127th nationally in sacks allowed. So despite what we see for the rest of the season, it would seem obvious that another attempt to overhaul this position group is in store for 2023.