2010 Record | 4-7 (1-5 in Southland Conference)
Returning Starters | 13 (6 offense, 7 defense)
Key Losses | The Bobcats leading rusher, Karrington Bush has graduated and ran for 704 yards and 6 touchdowns, as well as leading receiver, Da'Marcus Griggs, who caught 65 passes for 920 yards and 6 touchdowns. Linebacker Marcus Clark, the teams' 3rd leading tackler.
Key Additions | This preview may be the least informative preview in the history of ever. I do know that coach Dennis Franchione signed 24 players to his 2011 signing class. You'd imagine that the JUCO signees would have the most significant impact and there are a handful of tight ends that signed as well as WR/QB Shaun Rutherford, who played for Fran's son at Blinn CC as a receiver, but can play quarterback, who could make an impact at quarterback or at receiver.
Impact Offensive Player | Begins and ends at the quarterback spot and the Bobcat quarterbacks struggled during the spring game. Tim Hawkins was awful, completing 3 of 11 passes for 68 yards and of those 68 yards, 59 of them came on one pass. Hawkins did rush for 65 yards so that's good. The aforementioned Rutherford was better, completing 11 of 24 for 115 yards and rushed for 17 yards. It wouldn't surprise me to see Rutherford start against Texas Tech.
Impact Defensive Player | During the spring game LB Joplu Bartu was the unofficial MVP had 6 tackles and 1 sack. I'll go with that. Plus, this guy is excited that the linebackers received an "A-" in Dave Campbell's Texas Football despite the fact that I think that two starters graduated.
|Texas St. Bobcats
|@ New Mexico Lobos
|@ Kansas Jayhawks
|Texas A&M Aggies
|Kansas St. Wildcats
|@ Oklahoma Sooners
|Iowa St. Cyclones
|@ Texas Longhorns
|Oklahoma St. Cowboys
|@ Missouri Tigers
Yes, the offense is a bit behind the defense, but as the article notes, Franchione had to get things situated in a short period of time, so it's somewhat understandable, but from all accounts, the offense has not yet impressed.
From Texas Tech's perspective, I'd think that the Red Raiders have too much depth for this to be much of a game. And if the Texas State offense struggles, especially the fact that the Bobcats don't seem to have any sort of passing game should be a huge boost to the ego of a Texas Tech secondary that struggled so much last year. The toughest thing will be the defense needing to stay at home for the zone-read or quarterback option plays that I don't think Texas Tech will see very much for the rest of the year. They won't be able to just tee-off on a passer, that's not what type of offense I think Fran is going to run. I think he's going to try to keep it close and try to play a lot of ball-control. Still, I don't think that the Bobcats will be able to cover all of the Texas Tech weapons.
Offensively, the Red Raiders should have more than enough firepower to score early and often. Although I'm sure that this will be worked out within the next month or so, I think some players need to separate themselves at the receiver position. There's a lot of options and I'm not necessarily opposed to playing 8 receivers, but I think this offense works best when there are a couple of receivers that are able to dominate. I also would like to think that this is where the offensive line needs to start off on the right foot by getting to the second level and helping the running backs break some plays and consistent pass protection for a quarterback that's still a bit green.
I'm attaching a Fan Confidence Poll for you to vote on how you feel about this first game. Vote 100% if you feel absolutely confident about Texas Tech beating Texas State or 0% if you think Texas Tech will lose.