Defensive Preview previews the Texas Tech defense as they head into this weekend's showdown with the Aggies.

Red Raider Defense vs. Aggie Offense

The Texas Tech defense comes off one of their best defensive performances of the year last week against the Baylor Bears. Their effort allowed the Red Raiders to record their first shutout since the 2002 New Mexico game. They stepped up their game in a big way, and bailed out the offense for their lackluster performance. However, if the trends of this season continue, the defense will follow their excellent effort with a bad game this week. Prove me wrong defense, and play lights-out on Saturday against A&M. I'd like to be able to start using the word "Swarm" again.

If there's a word to describe the Aggie offense, it's inconsistent. They have had games ranging from 287 total yards against Baylor to nearly 700 yards against Oklahoma State. McNeal has looked brilliant at times, and downright awful others. Obviously, Reggie McNeal is still a talented player, and cannot be taken lightly. The Aggie receivers haven't given McNeal much help thus far, having made entirely too many drops this season. The Aggies also swear that freshman Jorvorski Lane is a star in the making. The jury's still out for most outside of College Station. He has been splitting playing time with the disappointing Courtney Lewis, and A&M fans are begging Franchione to get the ball in his hands more.

The Aggie offense may have to play their best game of the year if they want to have a chance at winning. They have the speed and ability to make teams pay if their opponents don't bring quite a bit of intensity to the table. However, I don't think the Red Raider defense has forgot about last year's overtime loss at Kyle Field, so it would be quite surprising if they didn't take this game seriously. Still, it's always possible that since everyone has counted A&M out in this one, the Red Raiders might get that overconfidence I hate so much and allow the Aggies to make this a game.

Despite what Aggie fans say, this game is the one that they want to win most besides maybe UT. I guarantee if they were to pull off the upset, the "Can Fran" campaign would lose quite a bit of steam. The thing that scares me about this game is that A&M has nothing to lose, so to speak, and they're going to want to win probably twice as much as Texas Tech will. Then I remind myself how bad their secondary is and how good our receivers are, and my qualms disappear. Nonetheless, here's hoping for a clean game from both teams, and respect from both sets of fans. There's no reason to ruin one of the better rivalries in college football.

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