LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - For the first time in over a decade, the Red Raiders will play the Baylor Bears in Waco.
Currently, the Bears are ranked No. 22 in the nation and are 5-0 on the season.
So, here are my three keys to victory for Texas Tech to go into McLane Stadium and beat the ranked Bears:
Limit the Bears running attack: This season, dual-threat quarterbacks have been effective against the Red Raider defense. (Specifically, Khalil Tate and Jalen Hurts.) But, last week against Oklahoma State, the Red Raiders limited Spencer Sanders on the ground but still gave up 219 yards and three touchdowns. In fact, the Red Raiders have given up three touchdowns on the ground to all three power-five schools they have faced, this year. So, I would expect the Bears to feed the rock to their homerun threat John Lovett all day, while featuring some running plays for their quarterback Charlie Brewer.
Duffey has to stay consistent: Last week against Oklahoma State, Duffey made his first start of the year and actually played his best game of the year. Against the Cowboys, Duffey had 424 yards through the air, was a part in five touchdowns and had ZERO turnovers. But now, can he do it again? Can he stay consistent? Well, if the Red Raiders want to continue to have success - they need QB1 to be consistent week in and week out.
"Honestly, I think he's a more developed leader," Travis Bruffy said "So he kind of came and you all have had the pleasure of talking to him. He's a very bubbly, frantic person, and that's exemplified in his play on the field. Kind of transitioning from how he was in 2018 as an unexpected guy that came in, made plays, a very electric personality, very electric athlete. He came into more of the quarterback role where we can design plays around Jett Duffy. We can design schemes around him. He's not just a mobile dual-threat guy. He's a developed pocket passer as well as a guy who can make plays. When everything looks like it's going downhill, he can get us a ten-yard gain or can keep the offense going after a five-yard loss or things like that. He can get us back home on one page. It's something that -- the intangibles of a quarterback take a long time to develop, and I think Jett's on a great track to kind of get him to where he needs to be."
Win the turnover battle: As of right now, Texas Tech and Baylor are tied at No. 2 in the Big 12 in Turnover Margin. But this year, the Baylor defense is extremely good at turning the turnovers into points. Get this, over their five games, the Baylor defense has forced seven turnovers and has given up on average 15.4 points per game... And, a big strength for them is their defensive line and forcing pressure on the opposing quarterbacks. So, it is important that the offensive line steps up and Duffey protects the football. While on the flip side, the Red Raider defense needs to start hot like they did last week - getting pressure early, forcing turnovers and getting off of the field on third down.
Final Thoughts: The Red Raiders will be the first pass-heavy team that the Bears have played this year. (Now, they did play Iowa State and managed to survive.) But, the Red Raiders showed last week that they have life and that they can play. At the same time, Matt Rhule has his players playing at a high level.
- Devin: 28-24 Texas Tech
- Pete: 34-27 Baylor