Kliff Kingsbury has promised to bring the high-flying air-raid offense back to Lubbock as the new head coach of the Texas Tech Red Raiders and that has helped him on the recruiting trail to convince big-time playmakers to sign on. The biggest catch Kingsbury had in his first recruiting class was four-star receiver Devin Lauderdale, a 5-foot-11, 170-pound speedster who looked to have the playmaking ability to make an immediate impact at the college level. We will have to wait, however, to see him at the major college level after Lauderdale failed to get academically eligible to join Texas Tech in 2013.
Instead, the versatile playmaker will greyshirt and enroll at Navarro College next year. He will start his recruitment all over again for the 2015 class and will be sure to be one of the top JUCO targets of the class. If he is able to stay cleared academically, he should have plenty of programs coming after him. Coming out of high school, he held offers from programs all over the country and from every major conference.
While losing his top signee in his very first class as a head coach will be a setback, but don’t expect Kingsbury and Tech to get derailed by the absence of Lauderdale. The Red Raiders signed five other wide receivers in this recruiting cycle, including: Dylan Cantrell, Justis Nelson, Demarquis Polite-Bray, Gary Moore and Carlos Thompson. Cantrell and Moore appear the most college ready of the group and have the size and ability to make an impact during their freshman seasons.
For Lauderdale, this should be a wake-up call to get his studies in order. If he can turn things around and get on the right track in the classroom, his football future could still be very bright down the road.