OSU-Texas Tech Matchups & Predictions

It is another elimination game for Oklahoma State as the Cowboys finally face another contender in Texas Tech. This time an OSU win not only keeps the Cowboys alive for November but would send Texas Tech into the role of being a spoiler with both Baylor and Texas left on the Red Raiders schedule.

Honestly, my biggest concern going into the game is the road atmosphere at Jones AT&T Stadium. Under Kliff Kingsbury the Red Raider Nation has sprung back into life and students on campus treat their new head coach like a rock star. He's asked for a special atmosphere Saturday night, and he'll no doubt get it.

The Cowboys have to remember how to block out the crazies in Lubbock, or jump out as they did two years ago and take them out of the game. More than likely this game will be too with Tech being more confident and the noise and atmosphere will be around until the end. Quiet at the very end will suffice.

1. OSU safeties Daytawion Lowe and Shamiel Gary
vs. Texas Tech inside receiver/tight end Jace Amaro
This is a huge matchup as Amaro has surfaced as the major ball mover on the Texas Tech offense. He only has three touchdowns this season but he has had a hand in setting up the vast majority of the Red Raiders touchdowns.

He most noticeably does it by catching passes and rumbling through opposing defenses. He gets away with some extra physical advantages at the point of the play because he can. If he is not getting himself some room to make a catch, then he is making room for a teammate as Amaro may very well be the best blocker on the offense including tackle Le'Raven Clark, an All-Big 12 candidate. Of course, Amaro is going to likely be an All-American of some mention at the end of the season.

I do believe that Daytawion Lowe and Shamiel Gary, along with help at times from linebacker Shaun Lewis and nickel Lyndell Johnson, will do a credible job on Amaro. They are physical enough and very athletic in matching up with him. With Amaro you have to hope you can contain him because you won't shut him out.
Advantage: Slight to Texas Tech inside receiver/tight end Jace Amaro

2. OSU wide receivers Charlie Moore, Tracy Moore and Jhajuan Seales
vs. Texas Tech cornerbacks Bruce Jones (Boundary) and Ola Falemi (Field)
The suspicion is that Texas Tech is going to load the box with seven or eight players after giving up 277 rushing yards and 220 yards of that after contact last week to Oklahoma and with Oklahoma State coming off a 342-yard rushing effort at Iowa State.

They'll look at tape of recent games and likely won't find anything to fear from Oklahoma State in the passing department unless they go all the way back to the UTSA game in San Antonio. That suspected, then Oklahoma State is going to be dared to throw and they will need to. The Cowboys can throw and they will likely have nice big windows to throw into with the majority of the Red Raiders stacked inside.

Those Tech cornerbacks are not real tall as Jones goes 5-7 and Falemi is listed at 5-9. Charlie Moore is a legit 6-2, Tracy Moore is right at 6-2, and Jhajuan Seales is easily 6-2. That means Jones is giving up seven inches and Falemi is giving up five inches. Our advice is throw it up and make sure the ball isn't thrown short. All three can jump pretty good and thinking with a basketball theme the Cowboys need to make sure they win the jump balls.
Advantage: OSU wide receivers Charlie Moore, Tracy Moore and Jhajuan Seales

3. OSU offensive tackles Daniel Koenig and Brandon Garrett
vs. Texas Tech defensive End Kerry Hyder
Hyder is short for a defensive end but also heavy set for a defensive end. He looks a little different out there on the edge, but he is the best defensive playmaker that Texas Tech has with over 10 tackles for loss and a couple of sacks. He is a senior and he is an angry senior that was very frustrated with recent seasons in Lubbock. He will no doubt remember the butt kicking that he has taken from the Cowboys the past several seasons, especially the last two.

It will come down to Daniel Koenig, who plays well with his mean streak, and the newbie on the line in Brandon Garrett as Hyder will line up on either side. In pass rush situations both Cowboys need to use those long arms and get Hyder tangled up. For run plays look for some angle help as the Cowboys make sure he doesn't get penetration to stop a run play before it has a chance to get started. This is a down and dirty battle that the Cowboys need to win.
Advantage: Too close to call

Oklahoma State-Texas Tech Prediction
This really comes down to a search for confidence. The Red Raiders had to look at the number "98" in their locker room all week as Kliff Kingsbury put it there to remind them about the margin of victory by the Cowboys the last two seasons (66-6 in Lubbock in 2011 and a 59-21 win in Stillwater last fall).

Tech needs to overcome that dominance that Oklahoma State has had over them as the Cowboys have won four in a row in the series. Oklahoma State's inferiority problem is more recent and just relates to the loss at West Virginia and some funky, yet winning efforts leading to a much improved running game and a blowout win at Iowa State last week.

The Cowboys will be in good shape if the defense controls Tech's offense and the OSU offense can muster up its mojo to some decent level. They will have to throw the ball some with success. If those things happen the Cowboys win, but obviously, we think it is close. You think Kingsbury's motivation with the "98" signs was to get the Red Raiders to play OSU closer?

No. 12 Oklahoma State 31, No. 15 Texas Tech 30

Big 12 Predictions
This Week
(Rankings are from USA Today Coaches Poll)

No. 12 Oklahoma State 31, No. 15 Texas Tech 30
This game features a good on good matchup of OSU's defense and Tech's offense. I like the Cowboys defense and I feel that matchup outweighs the OSU offense vs. the Tech defense. OSU must handle the Jones AT&T environment.

Texas 35, Kansas 16
Longhorns play this one sleepy but are just alert enough to do what is necessary to win. Kansas counting the day to Nov. 23 and a trip to Ames with a chance to break their conference losing streak.

Kansas State 42, Iowa State 27
Bill Snyder loves to run the football and the Iowa State defense after last week is an open invitation. Wildcats John Hubert goes over 200 yards and Sams comes close. Kansas State rushes for 360 yards over the Fieldturf.

TCU 28, West Virginia 13
Mountaineers are offensively, and especially scoring, challenged. Another headset or two get destroyed and TCU's Pachall wakes up a little in his second game back.

Last Week - Straight Up: 4-1; Against the Spread: 4-1
For the Season - Straight Up 41-10; Against the Spread: 20-22

Last Week - Review
No. 13 Oklahoma State 31, Iowa State 10
Actual Score: Oklahoma State 58, Iowa State 27

No. 9 Texas Tech 28, No. 12 Oklahoma 24
Actual Score: Oklahoma 38, Texas Tech 30

Kansas State 28, West Virginia 20
Actual Score: Kansas State 35, West Virginia 12

No. 5 Baylor 48, Kansas 10
Actual Score: Baylor 59, Kansas 14

Texas 26, TCU 24
Actual Score: Texas 30, TCU 7

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