Texas Tech Nebraska Report Card

The Texas Tech Red Raiders won one their first home overtime victory in school history Saturday as they out-scrapped the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Come inside as RaiderPower football analyst Mitchell Fish gives his grades to the offensive and defensive units after a game that was much closer than many predicted in the RaiderPower Report Card.

Quarterback: B+

While Graham Harrell wasn't spectacular; neither did he do anything to hurt Texas Tech while they were on offense. The game against the ‘Huskers could draw comparisons to last years loss to Colorado but one of the biggest difference is that Harrell didn't throw three interceptions.

Harrell does have some things that he'll need to address during practice this week, but overall he had a very efficient game.

Running Backs: A-

Who would have thought that there would ever be a game where the Red Raiders would outrush the Cornhuskers, though this was it. Tech rushed for 137 yards including a 49-yard gallop by Baron Batch to set up the Raiders only field goal of the day.

Shannon Woods also had a strong day, though he fell down on an important 3rd down play early in the game. Woods also had a crucial block as Eric Morris scored what would be the games decisive score.

Overall, a very strong day from the running backs including several big catches by Baron Batch.

Offensive Line: A-

While the offensive line did a good job blocking on several key screen plays, they did have some issues at times with Nebraska's pass-rush.

However, they also did a magnificent job of run-blocking throughout the game and helped the Raiders out-rush the Huskers.

Wide Receivers: B+

A solid day from the receiving corps including a somewhat rare 50+ yard reception from Edward Britton, there was also more than one instance where Michael Crabtree had the opportunity to make a big play and was unable to do so, including losing the handle on a pass that was nearly intercepted in the closing minutes of the game.

Defensive Line: B-

Anyone who felt that Rajon Henley missing a game wouldn't be a big blow to the Swarm defense was proven to be completely mistaken. Henley, who is so talented one-on-one when his line-mate Colby Whitlock is drawing double-teams, was not on the field and it showed early and often.

While Richard Jones, McKinner Dixon, and Brandon Sesay are good talent coming off of the bench they were unable to help shore up the run defense early.

Defensive ends Brandon Williams and Dixon were both effective coming off of the edge but the pass-rush allowed Joe Ganz to much time to pick-apart the Raiders secondary.

Redemption was sweet for Dixon, who had a tackle for loss negated late in the game on a questionable Brandon Williams personal foul , as he began to tackle Ganz forcing the game-ending Jamar Wall interception.

Linebackers: C-

The Texas Tech linebackers looked more like the unit circa early 2007 as opposed to the sure tackling unit that has been one of the defense's strengths early this season.

Marlon Williams was consistently exposed in pass coverage by Marlon Lucky while Brian Duncan and Bront Bird both seemed to find themselves out-of-position as often as they were in position.

Overall, the linebackers were about as ineffective as they have been at any point under Ruffin McNeil and will need to work on play recognition throughout the week leading up to a big game at Texas A&M.

Secondary: D+

The Raiders problem at right cornerback has become blatantly obvious as Brent Nickerson, LA Reed, and LaRon Moore were all extremely ineffective at covering anyone of Nebraska's receivers.

Jamar Wall had an atypical day as he struggled against the pass and was actually beaten for Nebraska's touchdown that sent the game into overtime. However, Wall's redemption was not long in the coming as two offensive plays later he intercepted Joe Ganz for the game-sealing interception.

Daniel Charbonnet had several key tackles and actually led the Raiders with nine tackles during the game while Darcel McBath had a very workman like day, quietly notching 8 tackles and nearly an interception to end the game on Nebraska's last drive.

Overall Grade: B-

A win is a win and it's a good thing that style points aren't awarded. While Tech played defensively about as poorly as they have since a 41-10 shellacking at the hands of Missouri last year, they made the big play when it counted to help seal the win.

The offense played a strong game, though they did let go 3 and out on an important series in the fourth quarter.

Donnie Carona has given just about every Tech fan an ulcer any time that he walks onto the field for an extra-point or a field goal, though perhaps this was supposed to be the game that Tech loses thanks to his kicking difficulties this season.

This could very-well be the best thing that could have happened to the Raiders, however, because it is a wake-up call as Tech heads into the most difficult part of its schedule.


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