Texas Tech tight end Jace Amaro is best known for his big-play ability in the passing game as a mismatch for opposing defenses.
But the 6-foot-5, 257-pound sophomore from San Antonio, Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said, was sorely missed as a blocker in the running game during Tech's 31-22 loss to Texas on Saturday. Amaro, who suffered an upper-body injury against West Virginia,
has missed three consecutive games.
"Jace being out has probably been our biggest loss because he gives us the tight end blocking plus the guy that when you put him in," Tuberville said Monday, "you don't know whether he's going to be down tight end blocking or a guy split out playing wide
receiver, which is just as valuable."
Despite being sidelined, Amaro still is the Red Raiders' third-leading receiver with 23 receptions for 394 yards. Amaro also is third on the team in touchdowns with four. Tuberville said he will not know until later this week if Amaro will suit up for
Saturday's game against Kansas.
"They didn't give him clearance last Thursday," Tuberville said, "so he'll be looked at again this Thursday."
Tech's defense too suffered from injuries versus Texas, as the unit was without three defensive backs: Tre' Porter, Jarvis Phillips and Cornelius Douglas.
Texas quarterback David Ash took advantage of Tech's depleted secondary, throwing for 264 yards and three scores. Tuberville said corner Eugene Neboh was forced to play some nickelback in preparation for the Longhorns.
"The Porter one hurt us as much as anything," Tuberville said. "We took Neboh and put him at nickel last week, which he hadn't played much, and then we had to put another corner out who's played very little.
"And that just put us in a tailspin."
Tuberville, however, did confirm that Porter and Phillips would be in uniform when the Jayhawks visit Jones AT&T Stadium. Phillips is returning from an ankle injury suffered during practice last week. Tuberville said Douglas is behind in the recovery process,
making his status for Saturday unknown.
Douglas, as did Amaro, suffered his injury during the Red Raiders' win against the Mountaineers.
By Jose Rodriguez — Special to the Star-Telegram