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LA Tech Will Rely on Transfers to Improve Team

The pieces were in place for the Bulldogs to improve in 2014, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Louisiana Tech Head Coach Skip Holtz needed just a few transfers to come in and solidify his roster. Turns out, they filled some very important positions.

Houston Bates will be a much needed presence on LA tech's defense.
Houston Bates will be a much needed presence on LA tech's defense.
Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

There are five transfers that will have a huge impact for the Bulldogs. Look a little closer and you can see just how important they will be to Louisiana tech in 2014.

QB Cody Sokol, Iowa.

Everyone needs a quarterback or the offense will simply not work. A dominant offensive line and a premier running back is enough for some of the bigger programs to get by on, but Tech does not have the offensive line to simply cram the ball down the throat of the opposition. Coach Holtz needs someone to lead his offense and Sokol needed a team of his own.

Paul Turner, LSU.

A quarterback can't be very effective if he has no one to throw the ball to and Turner can be the Bulldog's primary receiving threat. The West Monroe, LA native has been Tech's best receiver for the past year and now he gets a chance to show it on the field.

Joseph Brunson, ULL.

Center is another important position on the team. Ruston native Joseph Brunson came home and joined the Tech program last season. He has taken over the center position and will see his first college action in Norman, OK next week. If that isn't enough fun for the 300-pounder, Brunson's second game will be against his former team.

Houston Bates, Illinois.

Brunson and Turner are North Louisiana natives that moved back from South Louisiana to be closer to home. Bates moved back to Louisiana after graduating from Illinois. Like Sokol, Bates has drawn praise for his leadership. His motor is what makes Bates a force on the field and Tech really needs his pass rushing abilities to make a difference on defense.

Derek Edinburgh, LSU.

Edinburgh can't play this year, after transferring in from LSU. The 6'8" offensive tackle followed his former high school coach Jabbar Juluke to Ruston. Juluke is now the running backs coach for the Bulldogs. Edinburgh will be a huge help to the Bulldog's offensive line, especially with Right Tackle Mitchell Bell entering his senior year. In the meantime, Coach Holtz brought in junior college linemen David Mahaffey and Kirby Wixson to help provide depth this year.

Transfers are always a risky proposition for any college program. In Tech's case they could mean the difference in winning and losing. The overall talent on the team is better than last year, but it might not have made a difference in the standings. A pass thrower, a pass catcher, a pass rusher, and some pass protection could go a long way in transforming this team.