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Preview: Oklahoma v. Texas Tech

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The Oklahoma Sooners (9-1, 5-1) v. The Texas Tech Red Raiders (7-4, 3-4)
November 17, 2007 @ 7:00 p.m.
Television:
ABC (Regional)
Radio:
Texas Tech Affiliates
Gamecast:
CSTV
ESPN
Fox Sports
Weather:
Lubbock, Texas
We go back to the original picture that got us the victory against Baylor. Fear the Mustache. Go Raiders . . .
Big 12 Rank Texas Tech Statistic Oklahoma Big 12 Rank
12 62.18 Rushing Offense 191.40 5
1 480.64 Passing Offense 268.20 7
1 542.82 Total Offense 459.60 6
3 42.45 Scoring Offense 45.00 2
11 176.91 Rushing Defense 84.90 1
1 186.45 Pass Defense 226.40 3
2 164.43 Passing Efficiency Defense 179.95 1
4 363.36 Total Defense 312.30 2
5 25.64 Scoring Defense 16.80 2

The final home game of the year. I sure as hell that folks come out in droves because it's going to take a complete team effort to beat the Sooners. With Oregon losing last night, the Sooners will have even more motivation as all they have to do is beat Texas Tech and they are playing for a national championship. That's motivation, but I believe that this is also motivation for our Red Raiders as they have an opportunity to do Oklahoma what Arizona did to Oregon.

WHEN TEXAS TECH HAS THE BALL:

Crabtree has to be special on Saturday night. It's prime time and time for Crabtree to show the nation how special he is. (Texas Tech wide receiver Michael Crabtree (5) leaps over Texas defender Ryan Palmer (13) during the second quarter of their football game in Austin, Texas on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2007. AP Photo/Eric Gay).
Statistical Leaders Texas Tech
Passing Graham Harrell: 421 Comp., 572 Att., 4,878 Yds., 43 TD, 12 Int.
Rushing Kobey Lewis: 41 Att., 156., 2 TD
Aaron Crawford: 34 Att., 138., 2 TD
Receiving Michael Crabtree: 113 Rec., 1,707 Yds., 20 TD
Danny Amendola: 94 Rec., 1,096 Yds., 5 TD
Eric Morris: 58 Rec., 634 Yds., 8 TD
Ed Britton: 40 Rec., 554 Yds., 4 TD
Statistical Leaders Oklahoma
Tackles Curtis Lofton: 112
Reggie Smith: 60
D.J. Wolfe: 60
Sacks Auston English: 9.5
DeMarcus Granger: 3.5
Nic Harris: 2.5
Interceptions D.J. Wolfe: 4
Reggie Smith: 3
Nic Harris: 2
Lendy Holmes: 2

Five Things:

  1. Be More Diverse: Although Texas Tech racked up plenty of yards against Texas, OU may be a different story. I believe the key to be getting Crawford more carries and more involved in the offense. Although Coach Leach isn't a believer in time of possession being a significant factor in a team's success, I'd still like to see a more even distribution of the time.
  2. Use All Four: Michael Crabtree, Danny Amendola, Eric Morris and Ed Britton each need to have significant days. I'd love to see Amendola have a tremendous send-off, but the reality is that in order for this offense to be successful each player needs to play his part. Britton needs to stretch the field on the sidelines, Crabtree needs to create yards-after-catch over the middle and anywhere else he can get the ball and Amendola and Morris need to continue to make great catches over the middle.
  3. No Turnovers: Last week's lone turnover wasn't a killer, in part because the offense was really pretty efficient, but I would love for the offense to make a concerted effort to control the ball the entire game. Mistakes are a killer and the more that Texas Tech can take care of the ball and reduce opportunities for Oklahoma to create points (i.e. punt or turn the ball over on downs) then the better the chance the defense has.
  4. Stop the Rush: The Red Raiders are fortunate that Auston English isn't going to be playing on Saturday, but that doesn't mean that the Sooners aren't still without talent on the defensive front. Perhaps the most important key here is to keep Harrell as upright as he was last week and allow him to make a difference the entire game.
  5. Be Cool: Coach Leach has often talked about how calm and collected Harrell is on the sidelines, but I get the bad feeling that Oklahoma is going to get out to an early lead and we need Harrell to keep it cool no matter the circumstances. I don't think that the officials or any other "off the field" situation is going to affect the Red Raiders.

WHEN OKLAHOMA HAS THE BALL:

Jamar Wall and Chris Parker will need to have outstanding games against the OU defense (Texas Tech defender Jamar Wall (3) intercepts a pass intended for Texas receiver Jordan Shipley (8) during the second quarter of a football game in Austin, Texas on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2007. Texas Tech's Darcel McBeth (7) is at right. AP Photo/Eric Gay).
Statistical Leaders Oklahoma
Passing Sam Bradford: 185 Comp., 264 Att., 2,509 Yds., 28 TD, 6 Int.
Rushing DeMarco Murray: 108 Att., 686 Yds., 13 TD
Patrick Allen: 115 Att., 628 Yds., 5 TD
Chris Brown: 91 Att., 382 Yds., 5 TD
Receiving Juaquin Iglesias: 48 Rec., 705 Yds., 4 TD
Malcolm Kelly: 38 Rec., 695 Yds., 9 TD
Jermaine Gresham: 30 Rec., 406 Yds., 10 TD
Statistical Leaders Texas Tech
Tackles Darcel McBath: 68
Marlon Williams: 68
Joe Garcia: 66
Sacks Brandon Williams: 4.5
Rajon Henley: 2.5
Colby Whitlock: 2.0
Daniel Howard: 2.0
Interceptions Jamar Wall: 4
Darcel McBath: 2
Daniel Charbonnet: 1
Anthony Hines: 1

Five things:

  1. Create Some Magic: This is as an undefinable quality to achieve that I could think of and it has been done intentionally so. I really believe that if Texas Tech is to beat Oklahoma on Saturday night, it's got to be one of those magical nights where things just fall into place. That's not to say that Texas Tech doesn't have a chance, but I think that the stars need to be aligned in order for the Red Raiders to get their victory.
  2. Rattle Bradford: I'm not sure how much Sam Bradford has been rattled this season, but it sure as hell can't hurt. Bradford has been incredible accurate all year and Texas Tech needs for defensive ends to show up and play. Brandon Williams, the benched Jake Ratliff, Sandy Riley and Daniel Howard were noticeably absent from the statistics against UT. The defensive ends had better get some pressure on Bradford during this game and not expose the secondary.
  3. Support the Run: We talked last week about collectively stopping the run but the reality is that Whitlock, Henley and the Jones brothers need help. These guys are young, they are getting beat up and these guys need help. McNeill has to do a better job of getting these guys some help, whether it be from the secondary or the linebackers.
  4. Control the Clock: You would think that this would be said when the Texas Tech offense has the ball, but if the Red Raiders' defense could control their own destiny by getting enough stops so that the clock ratio isn't quite as disparaging as it was last week (i.e. 2:1).
  5. Scrap and Find a Way: Again, not really definable or discernible, but these guys are going to have to be aggressive, have some enthusiasm and run on adrenaline the entire night. Just think, win and you go home a hero.

PREDICTION: I'm not optimistic in my prediction, however, I believe that Texas Tech can get a win, but I hope like hell my prediction is wrong. Oklahoma 42, Texas Tech 40.