Opponent: Texas Tech
Nickname: The Red Raiders
Kickoff: October 12th, TBD
Location: McLane Stadium
Conference: Big XII
Head coach: Matt Wells
Last year’s record: 5-7
Notable outcomes: Lost to Baylor 35-24; beat Oklahoma State 41-17; lost to Oklahoma 51-46
Key losses: Dakota Allen, LB; Antoine Wesley, WR; Clayton Hatfield, K
Strength: Offensive line. The Red Raiders return four of their five starting offensive lineman from a year ago. The group did a good job of protecting the quarterback in the air raid attack, but there’s room to improve in the running game.
Weakness: Defensive ends. Most of the Red Raiders’ pass rush pressure came from the linebackers with the ends not getting a whole lot of push. That will need to improve this season with the new defensive schemes that will be implemented.
Prediction: I think a lot of people are underselling Texas Tech this season. Matt Wells is a good coach and the air raid should remain pretty strong with offensive coordinator David Yost:
If you can get past him looking like Harry from Dumb & Dumber he is actually one of the premiere offensive/quarterback minds, coaching the likes of Brad Smith, Chase Daniel and Blaine Gabbert at Missouri and Justin Herbert at Oregon. So I don’t anticipate the offense to drop off much. Likewise Matt Wells had some strong defenses at Utah State, which could put the Red Raiders over the top if they can more consistently perform on that side of the ball. Texas Tech was very close in a number of critical games, including a 5 point loss to Oklahoma and a 6 point loss to Texas. Slight improvements with a roster full of returners (and healthy QBs) could make this a dangerous team. Baylor gets the home field advantage and will also be solid team but this game scares me. I’ll give Tech the slight edge in a shootout.
56-51 Texas Tech