More often than not, college football is not about the X’s and the O’s but the Jimmys and the Joes. Being an elite recruiter will give a program a leg up on 80% of programs before the ball is even kicked off. It was very clear when Texas Tech Atheltic Director Kirby Holcutt hired Joey McGuire, he wanted someone with Texas roots who could recruit the state. McGuire’s palpable energy and passion for recruiting were apparent from the day he took over. But now that he has had a full year to recruit, just how well did the Texas Tech 2023 recruiting class grade out?
Texas Tech 2023 Recruiting Class
Highlights Of The Class
McGuire tapped into those high school roots and relationships as this class was built in the Lone Star state. Twenty-two of the 26 signees played high school football in the state of Texas. It was very clear that McGuire was looking to add depth to his defensive unit. Fourteen of the 26 signees are defensive players. Of the five, four-star prospects he signed all but one of them are on the defensive side of the ball. The positional group that had the most commitments came along on the defensive line. The Red Raiders signed seven defensive linemen. This is also coming off the somewhat surprising news that both Jaylon Hutchings and Tony Bradford Jr. are both returning for the 2023 season. There is no position in the Texas Tech 2023 recruiting class that benefits more from having those two leaders set the example for the next batch of defensive linemen.
The secondary was the next strongest position in the class, headlined by two four-star signees. Jordan Sanford and Brenden Jordan bring different strengths to the back end of the secondary. The offensive line also saw a nice influx of talent. McGuire and his staff signed four offensive linemen, including a four-star in Nick Fattig. Offensively, there was one omission that isn’t terribly surprising given the returning production at that position. McGuire did not sign a single running back in his first full class. But with seven running backs on the roster heading into the spring, including Tahj Brooks, this is not anything to be troubled with.
Most Intriguing Prospect
Of the four players signed to this class, three of them came from neighboring Louisiana. However, the most intriguing prospect was plucked out of Ducan, South Carolina. Miquel Dingle Jr. is a three-star linebacker and is ranked as the 95th-best linebacker recruit in the country. However, it is what Dingle has done off the football field that makes him so interesting. He is listed at 6’1”, 215 pounds, and also ran the track team. He won the South Carolina 5A state title in the 110-meter hurdles, running a blazing 13.68. But he set his personal best time at regionals with a 13.56. That is major athleticism that, with the right coaching, could develop in a future NFL linebacker.
Signing a class that ranks 26th nationally is the best class Texas Tech has secured since 2011. That class remains the highest the program has ever signed finishing 19th nationally, led by seven, four-star signees in the class. The Red Raiders still have not signed a five-star prospect in the history of the 247 composite rankings. In a strange occurrence, Texas Tech finished one spot below Mississippi State and one spot above Ole Miss in the final national rankings. Based on the last two games Texas Tech has played against the Bulldogs and the Rebels, the last thing the state of Mississippi wants to see is a Double T. It was the fourth-best recruiting class in the Big 12. Possibly more importantly, it would rank second in the new-look Big 12.
Just how big of a jump was this class compared to the last decade? The average recruiting class rank for the Red Raiders was 51st nationally. It is hard to find any real major area of concern or misstep McGuire has had in his first full recruiting class. So no one should be surprised when they see what grade was handed out for this Texas Tech 2023 recruiting class.
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