NewsChannel 11 spoke with Texas Tech students shortly after the announcement that the university and coach Mike Leach did not come to a contract agreement. Students we spoke with say they're surprised the two sides couldn't hammer out a deal.
Now, with an uncertain future for who will lead the Red Raiders football team, we asked students if they think the announcement will hurt recruiting efforts to bring the best football talent to Lubbock. "I assume that it's going to be detrimental to the team," student Samantha Gaddis said.
"Yes, because I've only ever heard of Tech football after Leach came," student Chad Hensley said. "Yes, I think that especially a lot of receivers, they like his system, and if we bring in a new coach, there's no guarantee we're still going to run the spread offense," student Andrew Hodge said. "Especially with a new coach, it never goes good the first season, so I think that could hinder our recruiting a lot," Hensley added.
"Not really, as much publicity as Tech has brought this year, I think that many high school football players and other transfer students will find great outcomes in coming to Tech," student Monique Enih said. "Our team could either do okay without him or not do okay at all," Gaddis added.
Some fans rallied to keep Leach, Tuesday outside Jones AT&T Stadium. About 60 people showed up with signs and chants of support outside of the TTU Athletic Office. Coach Leach even spoke to fans after returning from his trip to Wales on Saturday to see a rugby match, and Sunday's trip to the Daytona 500.
"The biggest thing that attracts our recruits here and attracts our players here and makes it exciting to coach here is you guys in the stands, and we are excited about being involved with you folks so one game after the next," Leach said. He told fans he looks forward to coaching next season.
He didn't comment on a new contract. Instead, he said that right now he figures he's just going to finish out his current contract.
Coach Leach Declines Texas Tech's Contract Offer
The deadline for the contract negotiations ended at 5 p.m. Tuesday and, according to a statement from Texas Tech's athletic director, Coach Leach declined Tech's offer.
Leach speaks to supporters at rally
On Tuesday dozens of supporters gathered at Raiderville to show their loyalty to Coach Mike Leach. NewsChannel 11's Katie Bauer has more.