Texas Tech didn’t have the best game last week. We don’t need to talk about it; we know what happened.
The Red Raiders need a quick rebound, and there’s a chance to get it today in Morgantown. Texas Tech has won two in a row against WVU, and here’s why they’ll make it three in a row.
Reason #1: Henry Colombi’s Big Play Ability
When Henry Colombi replaced Tyler Shough in the Texas game, he immediately showed off his arm. In just his second drive, he found Myles Price on a deep pass for 40 yards.
He followed that with touchdown passes of 69 yards and 75 yards. Sure, the score was way out of reach for it to make a difference. But, that doesn’t discredit the fact that Texas Tech’s offense vastly improved with Colombi. So much so that Colombi earned a 93.0 grade from Pro Football Focus, the third-highest of any quarterback from last week’s games. He’ll hold the starting job in Shough’s six-to-eight-week absence.
Explosive plays are how you beat teams with formidable defenses like West Virginia. I expect Sonny Cumbie to dial up multiple deep passes plays to Kaylon Geiger and Dalton Rigdon. That’s what Colombi has shown he is capable of doing.
Reason #2: Explosive Offense
My first reason leads me into my second reason, which is about the offense as a whole. Out of all Power Five offenses, Tech ranks fourth in yards per play with 7.6. The Red Raiders can be prone to slow starts, but they can roll once they get going.
Nine of Tech’s 21 touchdowns this season have been plays of 20 yards or more. Yes, that sounds like a cherry-picked stat, but it proves my point that the offense is explosive. No matter what down or distance, the Red Raiders can pull a big play out of nowhere.
Big plays are how momentum shifts in a game. Since nearly half of Tech’s touchdowns have come from long-yardage plays, they can steer all the momentum to their side better than others. That’s important, especially since this Saturday’s game might be a close contest.
Reason #3: WVU’s Lackluster Offense
Texas Tech’s defense is garbage. But, it’s worth noting that West Virginia’s offense is also garbage. Jarret Doege’s passer rating is 136.3, the second-worst out of Big 12 starting quarterbacks. The Mountaineers’ 370 yards per game rank eighth in the Big 12. Yes, Oklahoma has a great defense but putting up only 13 points doesn’t exactly show you’re a potent offense.
Texas Tech’s defense should get some stops against WVU. I know they gave up 70 last week, but WVU’s offense doesn’t come close to Texas’ offense. Look for Tech to get multiple takeaways Saturday.
Reason #4: Matt Wells is Undefeated Against West Virginia
If there’s any team Matt Wells can beat, it’s West Virginia. Despite his many flaws as a coach, he brings his A-game against the Mountaineers. During his coaching tenure, he won both of his matchups against WVU, including a 34-27 victory last season.
Somehow, someway, Wells finds a way to beat West Virginia. A win is desperately needed this Saturday for Tech to get back on track. Conveniently, the Red Raiders play Wells’ favorite opponent.