Quarterback Taylor Potts, who played tentatively in Tech's opener against North Dakota, showed poise and enthusiasm in his second outing as the Red Raiders' top signal caller, throwing for seven touchdowns.
Potts finished the game with 456 yards on 36 for 57 passing. He also corrected last week's mistakes, avoiding throwing any interceptions or taking a sack.
Potts' go to man was junior wide receiver and former Abilene HS teammate Lyle Leong who caught 9 passes for 117 yards and 3 touchdowns.
When asked about his connection with Leong, Taylor explained that they have a great relationship on and off the field.
"Leong is one of my best friends," said Potts. "We've been friends since elementary school, and I don't see that changing anytime."
One area of concern for Tech coming into the game was their running attack. Rice stifled the Red Raiders' running backs early with their tough 5-2 defense, but Texas Tech was able to exploit the Owl defense on several screen passes.
True freshman running back Eric Stephens was the recipient on one of those screen passes and took the ball 34 yards for the first touchdown of his career. Stephens also had a 93 yard kickoff return for a touchdown that was called off for a personal foul, but Stephens showed amazing athleticism and agility on the run.
The Red Raider defense was equally as impressive, finishing the night with 6 sacks.
Senior Marlon Williams added a one-handed interception in the fourth quarter.
Head coach Mike Leach was impressed with the improvements the Red Raiders made in the game against Rice.
"I thought we played very well in the second half," said Coach Leach. "I thought we had a lot better tempo. Now we just need to take what we that second half and build on it."
One of the downsides during the game for the Red Raiders was losing two of their top players, junior WR Detron Lewis and senior defensive end Rajon Henley. Henley went out in the first quarter and Lewis exited the game in the second.
Neither returned to the field, but both injuries appeared to be minor. They were likely held out for precautionary reasons with the Texas Longhorns looming on the schedule next week.