August 8, 2006

Newcomers make their debut

LUBBOCK, Texas - Texas Tech's freshmen spent their entire summer preparing for their first official practice as a Red Raider. In many cases, stepping out on the practice field today was the fulfillment of a life-long dream.

So, did it live up to their expectations?

"I was committed for a real long time," explained running back Baron Batch, "so finally getting here and getting to work on what I've been waiting for a whole year to do is exciting. It's still not 100% - it's going to change once we get shoulderpads on."

Often times, for newcomers, the first few practices serve as a transition period in which they get used to significant differences between playing football at the high school and collegiate levels.

While that disparity exists at every position on the field, perhaps where it can be felt the most is on the offensive and defensive lines.

"There are a lot of strong offensive lineman here" laughed defensive tackle Rajon Henley. "They're quick, like me. All of them, they're all tough.

"[The Bayou Bowl] helped me out a little bit, going up against people bigger than me, or the same size, but college is a different level."

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