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June 19, 2013

Key Red Raiders: Kerry Hyder

MORE: Two at the top for talented LB

Considering the fact that Texas Tech's offense has been the most consistent part of its football program over the last decade, one would think that head coach Kliff Kingsbury would point to that unit as the strength of his 2013 team. Instead, earlier this year, the first-year coach noted that the Red Raiders' front-seven was in a better situation than all other aspects of the team.

No. 10 >>
We continue our countdown of the 10 Red Raiders who will play the biggest role in whether or not Texas Tech has a successful 2013 campaign.
The Basics
Name: Kerry Hyder
Classification: Senior

Position: Defensive Line
Game log: 36 GP / 28 GS
Career stats: 111 tackles, 9 sacks, 22.5 TFL, 9 PBU, 3 FF, 5 QBH

Hometown: Austin, Texas
Prev. School: Lyndon B. Johnson HS
Number To Know
5.5 - Kerry Hyder's 5.5 sacks are the most for an interior lineman at Texas Tech since Dek Bake also posted 5.5 in 2006.
Second Guessing
He is overvalued because...: Texas Tech's defensive front seven is the deepest part of the team and it's possible that Hyder shares more of the playmaking spotlight up front with guys like Pete Robertson and Branden Jackson.

He is undervalued because...: Hyder is a proven playmaker and is one of the most experienced players on the whole roster.
A big part of the success up front is defensive lineman Kerry Hyder. Not only has he earned his stripes with 28 career starts, he's also considered a team leader.

Even though Delvon Simmons' recent departure doesn't impact Hyder's job directly, the Red Raiders need him to come through more than ever on a line that has the potential to be very solid in 2013.

The former Rivals.com three-star recruit from Austin's Lydon B. Johnson High School has exceeded that ranking in his first three seasons as a Red Raider and the upcoming season could be a special one in Matt Wallerstedt's 3-4 defense. As an end, Hyder has more responsibilities; rushing and containing the edges with help from some talented outside linebackers.

But talented is the key word. As defensive ends themselves last season, Pete Robertson and Branden Jackson don't have any real game experience at their new position and they're going to be key allies in run support.

You're looking for Hyder to aid, especially early on, in providing a challenge at the first level for runners.

From a pass rushing standpoint, they don't get much better than the senior.

Hyder had 5.5 sacks and broke up four passing attempts while recording a team third-best 56 tackles, 42 of them solo. Those stats don't include forcing the quarterback to tuck and run or at least moving in the pocket.

The converted end's pass rushing skills will be greatly needed this season as the Red Raiders break in a completely new secondary and he looks the part after a breakout 2012 season.

Furthermore, losing the 6-foot-2, 281-pounder would be a bad thing. Dartwan Bush and Jackson Richards are the only other established defensive ends without having to make major positional adjustments.

If Tech is to field a respectable defense this season, Hyder will be a big part of it.

UP NEXT: No. 8 on our countdown has played every position in the secondary for the Red Raiders.

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