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Red Raiders will look to find holes in a tough Longhorn defense on Saturday

The Red Raiders offense will have to cut down the mistakes against a solid veteran unit

NCAA Football: Alabama at Texas Austin American-Statesman-USA TODAY NETWORK

In years past we’ve had some epic offensive performances from both the Red Raiders and Longhorns. Both teams have had explosive offenses and have found ways to take the top off of the other teams defense, whether it’s a close game or a blowout.

This year seems like it’ll be a defensive battle, which is shocking to say. Both teams have been great on the defensive side of the ball, and each team has faced one of the best quarterbacks in the country as well. Texas contained Alabama’s Bryce Young for most of their matchup, and the Red Raiders are fresh off of making Devin Leary look pedestrian.

Syndication: Austin American-Statesman Aaron E. Martinez/American-Statesman / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Longhorns will be without their leader DeMarvion Overshown for the first half after he committed a targeting penalty in the second half of their matchup against UTSA last week. This will be huge because outside of him their linebackers aren’t anything to be worried about and this could open up more space in the running game. Even when he returns to the game, I still believe that our running backs are capable of making the plays necessary to help us win.

Their defensive line as a whole has graded out well against the run, besides a few big plays from Alabama they haven’t been beaten all that much. They haven’t allowed a whole lot of yardage but that could be due to them being up by a lot against the other teams that they have faced. Byron Murphy II and Keondre Coburn have been two of their best guys in the interior, and will look to control the line of scrimmage and let the linebackers do their best to flow around easily.

NCAA Football: Alabama at Texas Austin American-Statesman-USA TODAY NETWORK

Barryn Sorrell and Ovie Oghoufo are the main edge rushers and have been solid presences defending both the run and pass. Each of them have at least a sack on the year and will look to take advantage of some weaker tackle play that the Red Raiders have displayed over the past couple of weeks.

As for their defensive backfield, they play really solid as a unit but don’t have anyone that stands out to me. They haven’t faced a tough challenge yet this year (yes, that includes Alabama) and have their hands full with the weapons that Tech has outside and in the slot. If whoever is at quarterback for the Red Raiders can distribute the ball efficiently, it will be a long day for the Longhorns secondary.

Overall this will be a solid chess match between the two teams. I am of the belief that while the Alabama performance was good for their defense, we can still take advantage of them in all facets of the game and find success early and often. They’re going to miss Overshown in that first half, and we’re going to need to take advantage of his absence.