We hoped that Matt Wells and the Texas Tech football program would begin to pick up some momentum on the recruiting trail now that the recruiting dead period is over and that’s what appears to be happening. Saturday, Wells and Co. landed their second high school recruit of the week in Kaden Weatherby, doubling the number of recruits the Red Raiders had verbally committed to their 2022 class.
Rated by 247Sports as a 3-star prospect, the 6-foot-6, 270-pounder is listed as the No. 127 offensive tackle in America and the No. 10 prospect at any position in the state of Colorado. In addition to Tech, he holds offers from Kansas State, Arizona State, Colorado, and Colorado State.
The offensive line has long been a position that Tech has been trying to play catch-up at because of years of poor recruiting. For instance, in the last recruiting cycle, the Red Raiders added only three OL prospects.
That’s the same number that Tech brought aboard in the class of 2020. However, the good news with that class is that one of the two high school prospects Tech inked, Caleb Rogers, has already become a starter at tackle after emerging late last season as a first-team contributor. The other, Larry Moore, has yet to break into the regular OL rotation but he has drawn enough praise from his coaches that we can be optimistic about his future.
In 2019, Matt Wells’ first class as Tech head coach, only two OL prospects signed with the Red Raiders. What’s more, neither Landon Peterson nor Trevor Roberson has given us any indication that they are ready to contribute on the field anytime soon.
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Additionally, in the class of 2018, a group that should be the backbone of this year’s team, the only offensive lineman of the five that Tech brought on board who have contributed anything by the way of on-field performance has been Weston Wright.
The point is that Tech has had paltry numbers on the recruiting trail among the offensive line and to make matters worse, the majority of those linemen have failed to become significant contributors. Hopefully, that will begin to change with the 2022 class.
Also to have recently taken visits to Lubbock as Weatherby did prior to his commitment are 3-star tackle Alvin Ebosele from Coppell, 4-star tackle Jaylen Early from Duncanville, 3-star guard Cameron Williams from Duncanville, and 3-star OL Austin Kawkecki from Frisco. Hopefully, among that group is the next wave of Red Raider linemen who are ready to be more than just roster fillers.
This year, the Tech OL will lose starting tackle T.J. Storment and starting right guard Josh Burger to graduation and could lose starting center Dawson Deaton to the NFL. Thus, replenishing the offensive line ranks is an absolute must this offseason, and picking up a pledge from Weatherby is a nice step in that direction. Here’s hoping that this year’s OL recruiting class turns out to be the rare one in Lubbock that yields significant results as a group because that’s something this program desperately needs.