Texas Tech head coach Joey McGuire gives final thoughts after spring game

Texas Tech football head coach Joey McGuire met with the media for the final time during spring football where he updated the QB depth chart and talked about which players helped themselves the most over the past month.
Texas Tech's head football coach Joey McGuire pauses during a drill at a spring football practice,
Texas Tech's head football coach Joey McGuire pauses during a drill at a spring football practice, / Annie Rice/Avalanche-Journal / USA TODAY

Saturday, the Texas Tech football program wrapped up its 2024 spring session with another scrimmage. After the practice, head coach Joey McGuire spoke to the media about how he feels the scrimmage and the spring went.

“I’m really happy the way the guys played,” he said.  “I thought there were some big plays early with our playmakers, the guys that we need to go make plays.  And then I think the defense consistently sprinted to the football.

"…I think that this defense, it's going to be kind of the no-name defense and I don't mean that it's like we're not gonna have some big-time guys that are going to make a name but just the depth that gets go on the field so I'm really happy.  We came out really healthy as far as everybody that started the scrimmage was able to finish the scrimmage."

As with any football program, the focus at Texas Tech is always on the quarterbacks, and with starting QB Behren Morton held out of practice to let his sprained throwing shoulder heal, McGuire talked about what he saw from his backup passers. Interestingly, he had high praise for true freshman Will Hammond.

“They did a really good job,” he said.  “I thought early in the game, Will was really on the mark.  I could be wrong, I have to go back and look but you know I think counting the interception, I don't know the ball hit the ground whenever he was out there in the first half…I thought he operated really well."

McGuire was then asked about the depth chart behind Morton. To no surprise, he said that West Georgia transfer Cam Brown has the inside track on the QB2 role.

"No doubt you know Behren [Morton] is number one,” he said. “I think the guy that goes in after that is going to be Cam Brown.  You know, again…you don't want to play a freshman, or you only want to play a freshman in those four games [to preserve the ability to redshirt] and so I think it's you know as you go through Behren and Cam are the two guys if we played tomorrow."

One factor that has worked in Brown's favor is his ability to use his legs. According to McGuire, the dual-threat QB gives the offense an extra dimension that could be valuable.

"And the reason I say Cam is because we've really worked on some different things," he said, "and I mean I hate to bring this up because it's a nightmare for me, but I think you would see a lot of what K-State, the packages they did in that game against us whenever that was really [Avery Johnson's] first extended play, their freshman quarterback.  I think you would see a lot of that style of football whenever Cam is in the game or if he has to come into the game you're going to kind of see a lot of that and so those two guys were the guys that I’d be going one/two."

McGuire provided an update on Morton's health. He sprained his shoulder in game four last fall against West Virginia and then played through that injury all season. As a precaution, he was held out of the final two weeks of spring football to let that injury rest. According to McGuire, that was a good decision.

“I feel really good man,” he said. "He would tell you that he could go play today you know and we have got a great plan with our doctors and different people that are throwing experts as far as how our rehab and everything like that's going. I probably would say after the second or third day of rest, he would tell you he's pain-free."

As for which young players stepped up in the spring, McGuire pointed to some defensive standouts. Specifically, he praised a player who made a splash in the Independence Bowl.

“You know, we saw him in the bowl game, I would say Amir Washington and he's like a bull in China closet", he said. "…so I’m really excited about him you know. I thought…[defensive back] Jalon Peoples just had a really good spring.  He’s starting to really grow.

"The guys that I'm really excited about, like they've come on, is like [defenisve tackle] Jayden Cofield and he had a great spring game and he's really come on.  [Defenisve tackle] Braylon Rigsby and that defensive line room has really come on. And then Sheridan Wilson has had a really good spring you know. The great thing about him is you know he's doing a great job at center and we've got a group of like four or five guys that can play guard and center so excited about that those guys."

In all, it had to be considered a successful spring for Texas Tech. There were no major injuries sustained by any players and the team got to give some important reps to a group of up-and-coming players who will be asked to contribute this fall. Now, we make the long slog through the offseason and the dog days of summer as we await college football's return.