|Texas Tech Red Raiders (0-2, 0-0)|
|Tarleton State Texans (2-0, 0-0)|
|September 16th @ 6:00 p.m.|
|Jones AT&T Stadium | Lubbock, Texas|
|ESPN+ | ESPN+|
|83, AM Showers|
Lubbock Avalanche-Journal’s Nathan Giese – Texas Tech football vs. Tarleton State: Scouting report, predictions:
When Texas Tech football passes
In last week’s scouting report for Oregon, I said that if Tyler Shough could avoid turnovers against an opportunistic Ducks defense, he’d be just fine. That didn’t happen as the Tech QB had four turnovers (three interceptions and a lost fumble). Despite that, Shough has still played well as he’s 14th in the country in passing yards (620) and among the nation’s leaders in pass attempts (85). The Texans have six takeaways this season with four fumble recoveries and a pair of interceptions.
Advantage: Texas Tech
Lubbock Avalanche-Journal’s Don Williams – You have Texas Tech football questions, and we have answers as Red Raiders stew over loss to Oregon | Don Williams:
Q: How can you say Shough didn’t lose you that game?
DW: One of the four turnovers was on a desperation throw to the end zone. Another was on miscommunication between two receivers being in the wrong place, one drawing a DB into the window of the other who was the target.
The unit that seems to have gotten a pass is the defense. Given a 27-18 lead, a rowdy environment and all the momentum they immediately allowed a 17-play drive ending in a touchdown. Then, given a 30-28 lead with 5:13 left, they allowed a 10-play drive to the game-winning field goal.
Midland Reporter-Telegram’s Oscar LeRoy – LEROY: McGuire knows Texas Tech’s 0-2 start is unacceptable:
But if the Red Raiders continue to shoot themselves in the foot, it really won’t matter who they play on Saturday and they can still lose. Dumb penalties, turnovers and questionable decision-making from both coaches and players have led to a winless start to the season after losses at Wyoming (35-33 in double overtime) and nationally-ranked Oregon (38-30 last week).
Second-year Texas Tech coach Joey McGuire knows that close is not good enough and when he was asked about his own performance as head coach earlier this week, he was blunt about it.
“I’m not happy with my performance,” he said. “Even last year going 8-5, I failed. I came here to win a Big 12 championship. I don’t believe in average, I don’t believe in taking a consolation prize whether it’s a win or loss. Man, we played really good against a ranked team. I don’t believe in any of that. You either win or lose and my job is to win. I’ve got to be much better to put ourselves into position to win games, especially close games.”
Dave Campbell’s Texas Football’s Carter Yates – Two 0–2 starts, two different outlooks. What’s the difference between Baylor and Texas Tech?:
Grounded ground game
At the bare minimum, Shough may be a mid-to-late-round NFL Draft pick if he stays healthy. But that’s a huge if, considering he’s undergone two major shoulder surgeries since transferring to Texas Tech. It’s also a big if if he keeps up this torrid pace on the ground.
Shough, at 6-foot-5-inches and 230 pounds, has 38 rushing attempts through the first two games of the season. Texas Tech’s running back room has combined for 24. That’s a ton of hits the running backs should be taking that are instead put on the surgically repaired shoulder of the quarterback, and that’s before taking into account the four sacks. Facing a fourth and two in the fourth quarter, the Red Raiders decided to run a quarterback draw with Shough, who took a massive shot at the line of scrimmage and failed to convert.
The dependence on Shough’s legs in the Wyoming game made sense when Texas Tech couldn’t run the ball, but Tahj Brooks had six carries for 66 yards against Oregon. Hindsight is always 20/20, but the 5-foot-10-inch, 230-pound Brooks thrives in short-yardage situations and seems a better fit to run up the middle against a top-15 team than the quarterback. Brooks was in line to see an increase in touches with the departure of backfield mate SaRodorick Thompson, but instead, it feels like Shough has taken on all of Thompson’s workload.
Shough will still be an asset in the ground game, but shifting toward a more balanced attack with Brooks could do wonders for the QB’s health and energy levels.
Red Raider Sports’ Julio Gonzalez, Jr. – The Recruiting Six-Pack: Red Raiders land Micah Hudson:
Chad Woodfork. 2025 weakside defensive end, Humble, TX. (Summer Creek HS). 5.9, four-star, #96 nationally, #6 WDE, and #18 in Texas.
The Red Raiders offered Chad Woodfork in April 2022; he now has 19 offers. Those include Arkansas, Baylor, Georgia, Houston, Nebraska, Oklahoma State, Texas, UCF, UTSA, and Vanderbilt, among others. He picked up his latest one from Duke on Monday. Woodfork, a 2025 Rivals Top 100 prospect, visited Tech in March for Junior Day and is expected to be back in Lubbock for the Tarleton State game this weekend.
Red Raider Sports’ Jarrett Ramirez – Tech shoots for momentum starter against Tarleton State:
The Texans are led by Todd Whitten, who is now in his 14th season leading the team from Stephenville. Whitten is the winningest coach in Tarleton’s history, boasting a 96-50 record in that span. Originally from Dallas, Whitten is also a Texas Tech alum, a class of 1990 graduate with a master’s degree in sports administration. It was in Lubbock, in fact, that Whitten’s coaching career got off the ground when he returned to school as a graduate assistant on Spike Dykes’ coaching staff.
The Texans are in their first season competing in the newly-formed United Athletic Conference. The league features several familiar faces that the Red Raiders have competed against in the past such as Central Arkansas and Stephen F. Austin. Tarleton State was picked to finish sixth in the UAC, and has gotten off to a good start this season. Wins against McNeese State and a conference victory over North Alabama sit the Texans at 2-0 on the year.
In that stretch, Tarleton is averaging 52 points per game, a theme of Whitten’s offenses which have averaged 33 points and 426 yards per game in his coaching tenure. The Texans offense is the product of an overall balanced attack. Tarleton averages almost 200 yards/game (196.0) on the ground and 321.50 through the air.