THE RESULT | NOT WHAT I EXPECTED | So this weekend I was hunting in Throckmorton not-hunting, while my friends hunted for dove. It was good to get away and the good thing is that the friend's house that I stayed at had both cable and internet, which means that I got to watch the game. The other bonus is that the local Throckmortian Mr. Fix-It hat an HDMI cable which means we also watched it on the big screen. I sorta like roughing it. Because it is so late in the day, I won't get too detailed, but I do want to talk about some items that made me happy and some that have me a bit concerned.
OFFENSIVE STAR OF THE GAME | QB Seth Doege was outstanding. As much as he struggled last week, he was really good, not perfect, but really good this week. Leading an offense to almost 600 yards is just fine with me.
DEFENSIVE STAR OF THE GAME | S Cody Davis' 88-yard touchdown return helped turn what was I thought might be a bad situation that could snowball into momentun swinging Texas St.'s way to an absolute game-changer and putting Texas St. on their heels immediately. Davis always talks about making big plays and he did that on Saturday night.
SPECIAL TEAMS STAR OF THE GAME | S J.J. Gaines is going to be really good I think and although he didn't cause the fumble, getting that fumble recovery and putting the offense back on the field was huge in turning the tide.
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WAVES | There were 12 players that caught a pass on Saturday night and Doege averaged 9.9 yards per attempt. The receivers are coming in waves and when you think you can stop one guy, another guy comes up big. We thought that IR Tyson Williams would be awesome this year, and he still might be good, but IR Jakeem Grant stole the show with a juke that set up a 42 yard reception that was largely based on his speed and quickness. WR Javon Bell and WR Darrin Moore both come up big as Bell had 5 catches for 81 yards and a touchdown while Moore had 5 catches for 73 yards and 2 touchdowns. There is not one player that opposing defense can stop. Not right now.
A LOT OF YARDS DEFENSIVELY | I think it's okay to be on watch for the defense. I am waiting to see if the defense is going to crack and I thought we saw a bit of that last night. The defense was pretty good, but I am concerned when Texas Tech plays a team like Kansas St. and Iowa St., a team with pretty good dual-threat quarterbacks that will churn out yards. It was good to see some turnovers Davis' interception and CB Jeremy Reynolds finally getting some burn. But there weren't just a lot of really big plays defensively and Texas St. averaged 4.4 yards a play. I think it's good for the defense to find and see the mistakes defensively now, but this bears watching, just like it did last year. I'd also add that part of the reason why the Bobcats struggled is that Rutherford is a poor passing quarterback, or at least he was last night. I don't know if it would have made a difference if Arndt was in there all game. And to give credit to the defense, they have allowed just 16 points in their first two games and allowed less than 300 total yards for Texas St. I don't know that I would have guessed that going into the season, but I'll take it.
More after the jump.
PASS, PASS, PASS THEN RUN | It was interesting to see that OC Neal Brown intentionally wanted to pass the ball to start the game to open things up with the running game. No running back had a carry until the third series of the game. Brown did a good job of forcing Texas St. to back off the line of scrimmage and make them defend the long ball. Sometimes it isn't always about completing passes, but putting opponents on their heels. OC Brown and Doege put the defense on their heels almost immediately. And had you asked me after the game how many rushing yards Texas Tech had, I am sure that I would not have guessed that the running backs and Doege would have accounted for over 200 yards rushing had Bell not lost that 5 yards on the botched reverse. Just amazing to see 400 yards passing and 200 yards rushing.
A DEEPER DEFENSE | Time will tell, but there was not one player that had more than 6 tackles. There were 30 players that registered some sort of defensive statistic. A lot of players saw a lot of time that they had not previously. I don't know if this bodes well for the future, but it could if there are significant injuries to the defense yet again. If you want some positivity of the defense, and I think there is plenty to be positive about, but DC Art Kaufman ran through a ton of players, and in that first half Texas St. had 197 yards of offense, but in the second half they only had 73 yards of offense. One of two things happened. Ether Texas St. gave up the fight a bit or Texas Tech adjusted. We talk quite a bit about making adjustments during halftime and last year I think the general concensus was that there were almost no half tiome adjustments were made. It's good to see the defense clamp down a bit and the hope is that this carries on through the year.