Texas Tech assistant coach Clay McGuire gives update on the offensive line

Speaking to the media, offensive line coach Clay McGuire updated how his position group is coming together so far in spring camp.
Texas Tech's offensive lineman Caleb Rogers (76) yells while he runs out before the Big 12 football
Texas Tech's offensive lineman Caleb Rogers (76) yells while he runs out before the Big 12 football / Annie Rice/Avalanche-Journal / USA TODAY

One of the most important people in the Texas Tech football program this offseason is new O-line coach Clay McGuire. Arriving from Washington State where he had the same position, he has to rebuild a line that will have no returning starters in the same position as last year and four new faces in the starting five.

Thus, it was interesting to see what McGuire had to say after a recent Texas Tech practice when he talked about how his group is developing.

"I think we're coming along," he said. "Like you said, I knew this was going to be a process and we gotta build some continuity and some culture in that room as far as moving forward of how we want to do things here, and like I said I think we take a step forward every single day. I don't think we're anywhere near where we need to be to be where we want to go in this program but I definitely think the kids are buying in and I think they're working hard and I think that we are moving forward."

Caleb Rogers adjusting to life as an interior lineman

The lone returning starter from 2023 is Caleb Rogers who has played both of the tackle positions throughout his Red Raider career. Now, though, he's moving inside to either guard or center and McGuire gave an update on how he's looked during the transition.

"He’s a kid that as far as from a leadership standpoint, of a bought-in standpoint, how much he loves Texas Tech I mean he's been awesome," McGuire said. "He comes out there every day with an unbelievable attitude to go work and compete and do whatever it takes for his team to win.

"So you know our plan is to play him inside at one of the three positions, whether that be center or guard. Most of the reps came and guard this spring [but] he can play center. He's taken reps at center as we've done our off-seasonal work but you know just based on needs and you know just also trying to figure out problem solving as far as things that might come up you know who's going to be, who could possibly be a starting tackle who could possibly be your first backup tackle whatever it may be.

"He's had the opportunity to go bounce out there [to tackle] and he has the ability to do those things and the mindset to do those things. So it's been really valuable for us to have a guy that we can move in and fix problems and do those things and I think for him and his development goals of playing at the next level of having the ability to be an all-five position guy would be extremely valuable for him."

Davion Carter impressing as a transfer

Davion Carter transferred to Texas Tech from Memphis this offseason and it was immediately believed that he'd be a factor for the Red Raiders. So far, it appears that he's impressed McGuire.

"He's definitely going to be an inside guy," McGuire said. "I mean he's a kid that based on stature and you know he's a really smart kid really, really sharp. We started him out first day at center and he did a good job. I think it was going a little fast for him so we tried to slow it down and put him at guard to take some of that off of him…I think he's definitely another kid that could play any one of those three inside positions. He's a really sharp kid really smart and knows football. He's a talented kid. He's got a quick first step. He can get out and run a little bit and everything and so I definitely see him as the inside guy and he'll definitely be competing for one of those positions."

Who will play left tackle for Texas Tech

It is believed that the left tackle battle is Sterling Porcher's job to lose. The Middle Tennessee transfer started 25 games at left tackle at his previous stop. However, he's getting competition from JUCO signee Mauirce Rodriques and a surprise competitor, Dalton Merryman.

"Sterling [Porchier] has done a good job," McGuire said. "Again it's one of those things you know for those two kids they're coming in and we have experience at that position but we don't have experience here at that position. So you know even though they played a lot of games it's one of those things they haven't played a lot of games here in this offense so I thought Sterling’s been doing a really good job of picking things up fast. So you know we just continue to keep you know working you know kind of working our program into those guys and trying to help them come along and be the best football players they can be. And then another kid that we finally got back the other day who has really done some good stuff is the Dalton Merryman kid as well."

Sheridan Wilson continues to impress for Texas Tech

A surprise name to have emerged this spring is sophomore Sheridan Wilson. The Argyle, Texas native has been running with the first team at center in some practices and McGuire says that he is one of the players who has improved the most this offseason.

"Well, the kid that I've been extremely fired up about, and I, you know, latched on to it and have been really proud of is Sheridan Wilson," he said. "You know he's a kid that signed with Texas Tech, he's a red Raider. He loves Texas Tech and it's one of those things that he hasn't had a lot of opportunities here up to this point, you know. I mean from day one, since I've been here, you could have fooled me. I mean, he’s presented himself and carried himself and worked like he's been a five-year starter, a four-year starter here and so I'm really pleased with what he's doing and the leadership role he's taking on and how hard he works and the example he is and he's kind of the epitome of what we're trying to build here."