ARLINGTON, TX — Things haven’t gone according to plan for Matt Wells at Texas Tech so far.
But Wells hopes that things will be able to turn around on the back of much better quarterback play in 2021.
“I think it’s obvious we need to play better in that room,” Wells said during his Big 12 Media Days press conference. “Top to bottom that room is better than it’s ever been in the three years I’ve been at Texas Tech going into our third season.”
The Red Raiders might be relying on a new face to pull the strings this upcoming season.
After Alan Bowman transferred to Michigan, Texas Tech landed the transfer of former Oregon quarterback Tyler Shough.
A year ago, Shough passed for 1,559 yards and 13 touchdowns, completing 63.5 percent of his passes while throwing six interceptions.
Wells said despite Shough missing the very beginning of spring practice, he’s made an immediate impact in Lubbock.
“Tyler got to Tech for practice three in spring ball and the things that he brings, they’re some things that are hard to measure,” Wells said. “He’s in early, he stays late, he’s a football junkie, he’s a really good leader and fit in with our players almost immediately.”
Shough is battling with incumbent quarterback Henry Colombi, who threw for 1,065 yards and eight touchdowns last year in limited action for the Red Raiders.
Wells expects the quarterback competition to push on through fall camp.
“Henry Colombi, who won a few games for us last season in this league, he had a really good spring,” Wells said. “I’m really proud of Henry. That’ll be a really good battle.”
While the Red Raiders will have a new starter headed into the 2021 season, the other piece to the puzzle will be the introduction of new offensive coordinator Sonny Cumbie.
Wells moved on from David Yost, who held the same position at Utah State, this past offseason and turned to the former Red Raider to help run the show.
“It’s good to have Sony back. He’s West Texas,” Wells said. “He’s been there under several staffs before me. I think the vibe right now is really good with him and the offensive players. They’re excited.”
Cumbie will be able to connect with the quarterbacks, Wells said, which was something he put emphasis on when searching for an offensive coordinator.
“In terms of him and the quarterbacks, that’s part of the reason I do believe I chose him is just his ability to coach and connect with those quarterbacks,” Wells said. “He’s a detail teacher, he’s a technique teacher. He’s done a good job with those guys in the spring and I look forward to the work he’s going to do with them this season.”
The Red Raiders have made improvements on defense, but they’ll need to return to their high level of play at the quarterback spot to have more success in 2021.