Friday, September 25, 2009
Texas Tech's health improving
By ESPN.com staff
Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin
All three Texas Tech defensive ends who missed last week's game against Texas will be available for the Red Raiders' game at Houston Saturday night.
Starter Ra'Jon Henley and backups Ryan Haliburton and Brandon Sharpe will be back in the lineup after practicing this week. Henley's health is the biggest concern after he sustained an ankle injury on the first defensive series in the Red Raiders' second game of the season against Rice.
Henley's return would be huge for the Red Raiders, who had surprising success against Texas despite their limited numbers along the defensive front. Defensive tackle Richard Jones and linebacker Bront Bird switched to defensive end to fill the gap against the Longhorns.
"I thought they handled themselves well," Tech defensive coordinator Ruffin McNeill said about his patchwork group at defensive end. "The one thing there was is that they didn't have the 'deer in the headlights look' when we out there. I think that comes from players trusting coaches and coaches trusting players."
The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal reports that starting safety Franklin Mitchem and special teams player Ryan Hale both did not make Tech's travel roster for the Houston game and will not play against the Cougars.