The Injury Bug Bites Texas Tech Before the TCU Game and Daniel Cobb is Reinstated
In the aftermath of Texas Tech Red Raider Football's 49-14 win over West Virginia this past Saturday, the Red Raiders will be without two wide receivers for the rest of the season. Javon Bell broke his foot in practice and Bradley Marquez (pictured, above #4) injured his right knee while covering a punt against the Mountaineers. Head coach Tommy Tuberville said that Austin Zouzalik will help fill the void at wide receiver with Bell and Marquez out.
With the win, the Red Raiders are now (5-1, 2-1) and in a four-way tie for second place in the Big 12 with TCU, West Virginia and Oklahoma. They are also ranked nationally, including a #17 ranking in the BCS.
Tuberville was asked how the team will deal with the national attention after beating top-5 ranked West Virginia, "Well, I hope we learn from last year because we pretty much around the same part of the season did the same thing. We did something nobody else thought we could do and we didn't win another game. We've got to get focused on every day of what we've got to do to get better. We're a better team than we were last year, but we're also a target. When you're ranked as high as we are now and people see what you've done, you're going to get their A‑game. So we've got to bring our A‑game every week and just continue to improve."
In other injury news for Tech, tight end Jace Amaro (pictured, left) is listed as questionable for Saturday's game at TCU. I asked Coach Tuberville earlier today who would play tight end, if Amaro can't play. He said freshman Cameron Wright, from Lubbock Cooper, would take Amaro's place.
Amaro was hit in the side, late in the second quarter after an incomplete pass from Seth Doege and was down on the field for a few minutes before walking off under his own power. Amaro was placed in the hospital on Sunday for observation and was apparently still there Monday afternoon. He tweeted the following from his personal Twitter account:
Starting cornerback Cornelius Douglas is also questionable this week with a knee injury. Coach Tuberville talked about Douglas' status, "He twisted his knee. I don't know whether he can practice this week. We'll just have to wait and see." Bruce Jones saw some action against West Virginia in place of Douglas and may see some playing time against TCU.
Quarterback Seth Doege was very pleased with the offense's performance against West Virginia, "I felt pretty good about it on the field. There were a few looks on defense that I hadn't seen on film that I saw on our film that I was just kind of curious to see what they did and what we could have done. But other than that, I think we played well and we played really hard as a football team."
Doege was also asked about the possibility of not having Amaro on the field this week, "He's a big time player. We for sure are going to miss him, but we can't really worry about it. We have to go with the guys that are going to play this week. We have all the confidence in the world in each guy that is going to play. I fully expect Jace to be ready to play next week. I think he's a tough guy."
Coach Tuberville's players of the week were, "Jace Amaro on offense, Tre' Porter on defense, Olaoluwa Falemi on special teams. We gave it to the entire scout team offensive line. They did a great job last week against our defense to give them a look. Then Chris Payne, defensive scout team player of the game."
This week's game is at TCU and it will be Tuberville's first game at Amon G. Carter Stadium, "I'm anxious to go. I've seen it on film. The stadium looks nice. They've really done a good job with it. I talked to Gary (Patterson, TCU head coach) last year at a golf tournament about it. They're really pumped up about the expansion and all the new things that they've done."
Tuberville also thinks it benefits Texas Tech to have a Big 12 team in the Metroplex, "Gives us an opportunity to go there every other year once more. Even though we're taking one of the other games (Baylor) to that area, I think it's natural that both teams get into it every year, both fans get into it. I probably wish it was a little earlier in the season to have that game earlier in the season or at the end to where you've got that natural rival look, but we have no control over that."
The final note from today's press conference involved, now-reinstated linebacker Daniel Cobb. Cobb was kicked off the team in August after being arrested on a burglary of a habitation charge. However, the charge has been dropped against Cobb and he's been cleared of any wrong-doing. Coach Tuberville said, "There are no charges. There was nothing ever done. He was a hundred percent innocent, and we're glad to have him back on the team." Cobb will see action against TCU on Saturday.
Texas Tech plays at TCU Saturday at 2:30p and the game will be televised on ABC. Countdown to Kickoff with Steve Dale gets underway at 11:30a.