Texas Tech will host this weekend
Texas Tech this week will host another Big 12 basement dweller in the Baylor Bears. Both teams come into this game below .500, with Baylor currently standing at 1-4 in conference play, which is nice since Texas Tech now sits at 1-5 in conference play. Both teams are coming off losses, with Baylor narrowly losing to the number 17 ranked Iowa State Cyclones.
When watching the game between I-State and Baylor, I noticed a few things. Baylor stayed in this game because they could intercept Brock Purdy three times, and one of those was a pick-six. Secondly, Baylor’s defense struggled mightily against Breece Hall, mostly when he ran to the outside and caught the football. Lastly, when inside the five-yard line, their favorite play is to put a tall receiver or tight end to the left and have him run a deep slant to the middle of the endzone. They scored twice off of this same play.
Texas Tech Fails to Commit
What to note from Texas Tech’s embarrassing loss to TCU is that the defense played well for most of the game. If the Red Raiders offense would’ve played the way they did against WVU, there’s no way they lose the game. The offense that was used against TCU was boring and not effective at all. The repeated screen passes and mid-range throws did not work as intended. What was working was running the football. The only problem is that Tech didn’t commit to the run. Xavier White ran the ball just six times and got 43 yards. That is 7.2 yards per carry; when stretched out to 20 carriers, it would give him 144 yards rushing. That would have easily kept the game much closer and opened up the screen and mid-range pass game that the offensive coordinator David Yost wants to implement. Running the football would also have protected Henry Colombi, who was sacked five times, and three of those came early in the first quarter.
Tech Has an Advantage
When you look at this matchup between Tech and Baylor, it becomes clear that Texas Tech has the advantage, but will we use those advantages? Tech needs to run the ball to the outside off tackle and use Baylor’s inability to set the edge. Once the defense starts to play that run game, we should use our big guys on the outside. Vasher is coming off an injury so working him back into the offense is a must; the range and jump ball ability he brings makes the offense so deadly. Erik Ezukanma proves that he is a monster every week and that he can single-handedly take over a game. Finally, KeSean Carter, or as I like to describe him, “The Juggernaut” since he will not go down from just one guy and will drag the pile with him for even more yards. Tech needs to get back to what we do best, stretching the field and bombing people over the top.
Texas Tech Has a Chance Against Balyor
Baylor will try to keep it close like they did with I-State, but all Tech needs to do is force their quarterback Charlie Brewer outside the pocket, especially to his left. When outside the pocket, Brewer makes most of his mistakes and his mechanics seem to go right out the window. We don’t even need to sack him but get him out of the pocket, and our guys Zach McPhearson and Thomas Legget should have big games.
What Tech Needs to Do
What Tech needs to do is not turn the ball over, run the ball, and throw it deep. Those three things on offense are all it will take to win this game. Baylor is not nearly as explosive, so don’t give them short fields and watch the lead grow. This game should be a blowout win for Tech, but it won’t. I don’t trust this staff to run the right offense, and so I see this game coming right down to the wire again. Luckily, there seems to be some magic inside the Jones that makes Texas Tech play better, so I’m going to go with my gut and give Tech the win 24-21 over the Baylor Bears. The game is scheduled for 3:00 pm CT and will be televised on FS1.
Article by Ryan Scott, sports journalist intern.