Kansas @ Texas Tech: Offensive Preview

RaiderPower takes a closer look at what the Texas Tech offense needs to do to put points on the board against the Jayhawks

Although the Texas Tech offense was flawless in their first two outings, they had a bit of a hiccup early against Indiana State. Their first drive ended in a three-and-out, which was partly due to some conservative playcalling. Surprisingly, Cody Hodges did not start out the game with the deadly accuracy that Tech fans had become used to. Cody threw his first interception of the year, but managed to force a fumble on the INT return which Tech recovered. I'm not even sure that said play should count as a turnover, but it will go in the books as one nonetheless. Also, the Tech receivers did not have their usual success, which could possibly be attributed to limited playing time for most of the starters as well as shorter routes being run against the Sycamores.

Thankfully for Red Raider fans, Hodges & Co. got it together quickly, and managed to once again score 49 points in the first half. The most encouraging part of the game for the Red Raider faithful was the offensive balance that Tech showed. The early difficulties in the passing game forced Tech to put the shift the focus towards the running game, and Taurean Henderson did not disappoint. In only ten carries, Henderson amassed three touchdowns and 141 yards. Part of the credit for the running success goes to the Red Raider offensive line, who finally stepped it up and had an excellent game in both pass and run blocking. Overall, it was pleasing to see that in the event that one unit struggles, others step up to the plate. That's what being a team is all about, and is one of the many reasons this year's Red Raiders may be the best group in years.

Looking ahead to Tech's home game against the Kansas Jayhawks, it appears on paper that the Red Raiders should easily win this one. However, we all know games aren't played on paper, and Big 12 opponents are never a joke. This is especially the case with KU, who is arguably the most underrated team in the conference. Their defense is a talented group that has already managed to force six turnovers this year. Also, no opponent has accumulated 400 yards of offense on them yet. When compared with the creampuffs of Tech's non-conference schedule, the Jayhawk D is leaps and bounds above the competition that the Red Raiders have faced so far. TTU's offensive performance this week will be indicative of whether or not the Red Raiders can put up the same impressive numbers against a "real" team.

So does Tech have what it takes to dissect a good defense? It would certainly appear so at this point, but this game should force Texas Tech to either put up or shut up. Talentwise, the Red Raider offense has improved from last year, but the Kansas defense has as well. However, if the Jayhawks can continue forcing turnovers and keep the Air Raid off the field, this game could be a spoiler for Tech's season. This should be a better game than some people think, and will be one of the better matchups in Big 12 conference play this weekend.


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