Running Hard

The Red Raiders ran the ball more in the season opener, than in any other game in recent memory.

The Red Raider ground attack proved to be a very effective weapon in the Red Raider's 44-6 win over Northwestern State on Saturday night.

The Texas Tech slate of running backs, led by Eric Stephens, ran the ball 46 times while gaining 179 yards on the ground.

Stephens rushed for 58 yards in 16 carries and two touchdowns, while Kenny Williams had 15 attempts for 75 yards, to lead the team, and SaDale Foster completed his night with 11 carries and 44 yards.

Tech head coach Tommy Tuberville was very pleased by the effort of these three backs, especially Stephens.

"Three pretty good running backs, spread it out pretty good," he said. "It was great see Eric Stephens back getting a couple of touchdowns. But we'll need all three running backs as we go."

Before the game, Tuberville had mentioned he wanted to get Stephens between 10 and 15 carries to ease him back into live action since injuring his left knee against Texas A&M last season.

Stephens proved to make the most of his light workload as he scored the Red Raiders first two touchdowns of the night.

Offensive coordinator Neal Brown and his game plan called for a balanced attack as the Red Raiders racked up 46 carries on the ground and 47 through the air.

One strategy mentioned by Brown was to take pressure off the young guards, Alfredo Morales and Le'Raven Clark.

"We've got to be able to run the ball a little bit more consistent," Brown said. "I thought we showed flashes. We were really, really conservative tonight. I called the game a lot with those two guards in mind. I didn't want to put a whole lot of pressure on them game one. We'll open up the playbook a little bit more."

This is the type of balanced attack we haven't seen in a while under the lights at Jones AT&T Stadium.

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