Zero Botched Snaps
It may have been the nerves. Walk-on True Freshman QB Baker Mayfield was playing high school football one year ago. He still does not have a scholarship, yet he's starting for a Big 12 team who features a first-year head coach. Mayfield and sophomore C Jared Kaster failed to connect on more than one occasion against the SMU Mustangs Aug. 30 leading to a few botched snaps. The Mustang defense was not fast enough to recover the fumbles, but it must have took the air out of the Red Raider faithful for a few seconds. Tech must cut out the simple mistakes or Stephen F. Austin may be able to turn the game into a turnover battle.
100 Yards Rushing By at Least One Player
Texas Tech had 48 rushing yards against a dismal SMU defense. The game featured a tie between Mayfield and sophomore WR Jakeem Grant for leading rusher with 16 yards apiece. RBs Deandre Washington and Kenny Williams combined for 16 yards on the ground. Mayfield gained 47 yards in the rushing game, but lost many of those. If Tech is unable to rush against Stephen F. Austin, it will be a long year. If the wind gods take away the passing game too, Stephen F. Austin may pull off the upset.
One player must get 100 yards rushing in order to boost up confidence in the offense. The Red Raiders must find a rhythm and some tempo on the ground.
Force 2 Turnovers
Texas Tech's defense held its own against SMU. The Red Raiders allowed two touchdowns but had many red zone stands that either kept SMU to field goals or no points. However, Matt Wallerstedt's crew forced zero turnovers. That statistic must change. Tech needs to create at least two turnovers against Stephen F. Austin. Lumberjacks QB Brady Attaway was picked off three times against Weber State which was a big factor in why the Lumberjacks lost 50-40. Tech must create turnovers or else the Lumberjacks will be able to control the time of possession.