Offense looks to bounce back against struggling Texas Tech defense

Drew Lieberman

Kansas State shut out Texas for the first time Saturday in over a decade. 

The Longhorns only accounted for 196 yards offensively and never possessed the ball for more than 40 percent of the time of any quarter.

“We just didn’t execute; that’s the bottom line,” sophomore quarterback Tyrone Swoopes said. “We didn’t execute, so, when you don’t execute, it puts you in a really tough position to win.”

Texas only possessed the ball 10 times, and all but two of those possessions ended with a punt. The Longhorns moved the ball less than 10 yards on six of the drives and failed to convert on two red zone opportunities.

“If you watched me on the side line, I was frustrated the whole time,“ senior wide receiver John Harris said. “Just doing those quick three and outs — that’s not us.”

For Texas Tech’s defense, Saturday was also a day that they would like to forget. The Red Raiders surrendered 82 points to No. 10 TCU, which was the most allowed in program history and the most scored ever in a Big 12 conference game.

“If I’m a coordinator, and I just gave up 82 points, then you’re trying to figure out, ‘Hey, how did this happen?’” head coach Charlie Strong said. “You’re looking at your players on defense, and they’re really feeling down because they’re giving up that many.”

But Tech’s defensive issues have lasted most of the season. Entering Saturday, the Red Raiders had allowed 44 points per game in their losses and over 460 yards per game in their first seven contests.

In contrast to the Tech defensive struggles, the Longhorn offense has been almost non-existent in their losses. Entering Saturday, they had mustered just over two touchdowns in defeats and were nearly shut out in their losses to Baylor and BYU.

“You have two teams coming off of a loss,” Strong said. “If I’m sitting there at Texas Tech, [we’re] probably figuring, ‘Hey, have this team coming in off a loss, so we need to go play well because we were embarrassed.’ Both teams were embarrassed last week.”

While the Longhorns failed to move the ball effectively and score points, that may not be the case this weekend. The Red Raiders defense has surrendered at least 21 points in every contest and 30 or more points in six of the eight games played so far.

Despite how badly Tech’s defense is statistically, the Longhorn players are anticipating maximum effort to compensate for last weekend’s beating.

“They are going to come back with a level of pride and a sense of urgency to try to forget about that loss and just try to move forward as a defense,”
Harris said.