Texas Tech football remains in the mix for 4-star high school edge rusher

Elite high school edge rusher Michael Riles has cut his list of suitors down to six schools and Texas Tech has made the cut.
Sep 30, 2023; Lubbock, Texas, USA;  A general view of the Texas Tech Red Raiders masked rider statue
Sep 30, 2023; Lubbock, Texas, USA; A general view of the Texas Tech Red Raiders masked rider statue / Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Finding quality edge rushers is one of the hardest pursuits in college football because every program in the nation covets pass rushers. That's one reason why Texas Tech has historically struggled when trying to land high-profile recruits who can pressure the quarterback.

That could be changing, though, as the Red Raiders are squarely in the mix for 4-star edge rusher Michael Riles from Port Arthur, Texas. In fact, on Wednesday Riles released the list of his top six schools and Texas Tech made the cut along with Oklahoma State, Florida, Central Florida, Texas A&M, and Nebraska.

A 6-foot-3, 235-pound member of the class of 2025, Riles has quite the pedigree. According to 247Sports.com, he is the No. 216 overall player in America and the No. 32 player in Texas.

In addition to his top six choices, Riles has offers from the likes of Texas, TCU, Houston, SMU, Southern California, Missouri, and others. Now, he appears closer to making his decision.

Currently, the Red Raiders are working on putting together a rather strong 2025 high school recruiting class. Already with 11 players committed, Tech's class checks in at No. 18 nationally and No. 2 in the Big 12 behind Arizona State.

The class is currently missing an edge rusher, though. In fact, right now, only one defensive lineman, Dylan Singleton, a 3-star prospect from Louisiana, is committed to Tech.

Adding players of Riles' caliber would be a huge step in building Texas Tech into a Big 12 contender under McGuire, who is recruiting at a level never before seen by a Red Raider head coach. Riles grades out at a score of 90 as a prospect according to 247Sports.

To put that in perspective, that would tie him with Stephenville, Texas wide receiver Steven Gentry as the highest-graded player in Tech's current class. What's more, the program has signed only two edge rushers graded a 90 or better during the McGuire era. They are 2024 signee Cheta Ofili of Sachse, Texas, and 2023 signee Isaiah Crawford of Post, Texas.

If the Red Raiders can continue to bring in elite pass-rushing prospects with each recruiting cycle, then the defense could start to really turn the corner under the guidance of D.C. Tim DeRuyter. So keep an eye on Riles' recruitment because he could fill a huge need in the Red Raiders' current recruiting haul.