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The Ultimate Trap Game

The Red Raiders can’t become another Cougar Power 5 victim.

NCAA Football: Rice at Houston John Glaser-USA TODAY Sports

“The zany action, the crazy contraption, the fun is catching, it’s MOUSE TRAP.” That wacky jingle is for non other than one of the greatest board games of an 80s or 90s baby’s childhood. As a kid, I would always beat my friends and younger siblings of course, but there’s always that time where I’m not paying attention and underestimate someone who’s playing and they build one of those crazy contraptions to catch my mouse before I get to theirs. This board game may have just been a fun way for kids, like myself, to occupy our times during the summer, but it in turn can teach a valuable lesson is not getting caught in a trap yourself. For the Red Raiders, Houston appears to be that trap.

A ‘Trap’ Game is a game that is played before or after a tough or rival opponent. Teams have a tendency to look past an opponent preparing for the following week's game, or have a letdown after beating a tough or rival opponent.” This Yahoo definition sets the stage for what the Red Raiders are facing. Next Saturday, Lubbock is all geared up for a night time showdown against a familiar opponent. A team that Tech hasn’t beaten since 2008, a team that Tech lost to by just one point, and a team that will be ranked in the top 10. Wild things happen in Lubbock at night when two undefeated teams play, but for that to happen Tech can’t fall into the trap.

This road game to Houston is sandwiched between a revenge game against Arizona State and the upcoming night game against the Pokes. To top that off, this game is given a mundane 11:00 AM start time, the Red Raiders can easily get lulled before this game and get put to sleep.

NCAA Football: Rice at Houston John Glaser-USA TODAY Sports

Most trap games also happen because the team that’s playing is an inferior opponent, unfortunately for Tech, that is not the case. Houston has the luxury of having the country’s best defensive presence in the country in Ed Oliver. Not only that, but transfers Kyle Allen and Duke Catallon have given Houston the skill set of a strong Power 5 team. Houston will be the toughest non-conference opponent Tech will face but with the lackluster performance against Arizona and easy Rice game, it’s easy to expect a lower tier team.

Kingsbury has made it apparent that the team is taking this Cougar squad very seriously and know this will be a big test for conference play, but if Tech isn’t too careful that test can turn into a trap swiftly.