Defense Shines in Scrimmage

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NCAA.com Wire
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August 26, 1998

LUBBOCK, Texas - The defense shined in an early morning scrimmage for the Texas Tech football team at Jones Stadium. The low impact, 84-play scrimmage focused mainly on determining second and third team player placement. Now, the team will set its sights on preparation for the Saturday, Sept. 5 opener versus Texas-El Paso. The Red Raiders have a final situation scrimmage scheduled for Saturday at 7:45 a.m.

"This is the last team scrimmage we will have," head coach Spike Dykes said. "Everything else we do will be geared toward preparing for UTEP. Its been a good two-a-days. We feel like we have a lot accomplished. Our young guys have come a long way in a short time, and our veterans continue to do well. Were ready to get started playing someone else besides ourselves."

The first-team offense and defense faced off for only 12 plays on the day. Defensive ends Montae Reagor (Waxahachie, Texas) and Taurus Rucker (Denison, Texas) both recorded two sacks on quarterback Rob Peters (Katy, Texas). Raider Keith Cockrum (Goldthwaite, Texas) had a near interception of Peters on the 12th and final play of the first team.

"I was proud of the first team defense," Dykes said. "I thought they out played the offense today. It was encouraging to see the way they got after it today. The did really well."

On the scrimmage, the three defensive units combined for 13 sacks including one in the end zone for a safety. The defense also had two interceptions as Jamaal Crisp (Dallas, Texas) and Paul McClendon (Stamford, Texas) recorded picks.

Offensively, Matt Tittle (Flower Mound, Texas) led all quarterbacks with a 5 for 7 day passing for 67 yards. Tittle connected on the longest pass of the day hitting split end Tim Baker (Borger, Texas) for a 41-yard play. Second-team tailback James Easterling (Crowley, Texas) led all Texas Tech rushers with 74 yards on five carries. He recorded the longest run of the day with a 50-yard carry.

On special teams, Jaret Greaser (Amarillo, Texas) hit a 44-yard field goal and was perfect on his one extra-point attempt. Chris Birkholz (Temple, Texas) missed a 53-yard attempt, his only try of the day.

In other team news, junior transfer tailback Shaun Carr (Sweetwater, Texas) will wear No. 35, the number formerly occupied by sophomore tailback Ricky Williams (Duncanville, Texas). Williams will wear No. 2 for the 1998 season. Also, sophomore cornerback Brian Giddens (Tyler, Texas) has changed from No. 10 to No. 21 for the season.

Good news on the David Simmons (New Braunfels, Texas) injury. Simmons has been discharged from the hospital after suffering a spinal cord contusion during practice Monday. Doctors will continue to monitor his progress and conduct additional tests.




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