With all of the hype that this team had coming into this week, its safe to say that all of it has gone away. The FIU game was supposed to be the coming out party for this offense, but they had trouble getting started and have lost Tyler Shough until November.
The grades for the offense will end up being okay, but I will certainly be taking into consideration the slow start that they had. While the defense is to blame for a majority of this abysmal performance, the offense had their fair share of terrible plays.
Tyler Shough left in the middle of the game with what turned out to be a broken collarbone. Up until that point, he had a rushing touchdown and an interception so he wasn’t really making an impact.
In came Henry Colombi. Although I am not going to praise any performances from this team in a blowout like this, it was nice to see that someone was trying to get us back into this game. He finished with three touchdowns on some very well thrown balls and he wasn’t afraid to keep taking shots as the game was pretty much out of reach with the defense not being able to help out the offense at all.
With Shough missing time now, Colombi will have every opportunity to right the ship and help this team achieve a winning season that would ultimately put this game all the way behind us. Donovan Smith also ran for a touchdown which was nice to see.
Running Backs: C
This position group was non-existent on the ground and in the passing game. With Tahj Brooks being a last-second scratch it would’ve been nice to see Sarodorick or Xavier take over, but that just wasn’t the case. This is in part due to the offensive line being bad all-around, but you would’ve liked to have seen Xavier play a part in the passing game.
Tahj is clearly playing the best out of the bunch right now, so when he’s healthy it’ll be nice to see if Thompson can establish himself as the lead back or if Tahj has taken over that role entirely.
Wide Receivers- A
This group made so many plays that its hard to be mad at them. Young guys were making big time plays and 4 guys had over 50 yards through the air.
Loic Fouonji’s touchdown catch was an incredible display of athleticism, and seeing Kaylon Geiger lead the receivers in yards again was promising as well. While a lot of these plays came during a point where the game was out of hand, the guys still made plays and were working hard to get behind the defense.
It was also nice to see them do this with Colombi at quarterback, which shows that hopefully there isn’t some crazy drop off in production with the imminent quarterback change.
Tight Ends: C-
Whether or not it is their fault for not getting open or the game plan for not giving them opportunities, this position group has been disappointing despite besides last weeks performance.
Mason Tharp had 1 catch for 7 yards, while Travis Koontz was a non factor. You can’t even say that they helped in the running game because the running game was also bad. Not utilizing these two key guys is something that blows my mind because they’re the type of guys that can win the mismatches on the key downs that Texas Tech seems to have trouble converting.
Offensive Line: D
This offense seems to go as the offensive line goes, and this unit was not helping anyone for most of the game. Run blocking was an issue for the second week in a row, and while they didn’t give up too many sacks they still weren’t doing a good job in giving the quarterbacks time.
There’s no way to tell if this group will improve as the season goes on, but it has to if the Red Raiders are going to be anywhere near the top half of the Big 12 picture. Building up the confidence against West Virginia is what needs to happen in order for these guys to get back on the right track.
Play Calling/Game Plan: C-
Slow starts have unfortunately become a common factor in each game this season. You’re not going to win many games against the best in the Big 12 if you allow a team to get ahead without any resistance from the offense.
The big throws by Colombi when the game was out of hand was nice to see, but how much of that was the play call compared to the Longhorns knowing that they couldn’t be stopped on offense. While the game plan was nowhere near as bad as the defense, it was still tough to see Tech get mauled this bad by a Texas team that isn’t really all that good on the defensive end.
How much will the game plan and play calling change with Shough now out? Hopefully not too much as Colombi showed you what he could do when given the opportunity.