FACTS & STATS: Site: Jack Trice Stadium (55,000) — Ames, Iowa.
Television: FSN. Home Record: TTU 2-4, ISU 1-4. Away Record: TTU 1-3, ISU 1-3.
Neutral Record: TTU 0-0, ISU 0-0. Conference Record: TTU 1-6, ISU 0-6. Series
Record: Texas Tech leads, 9-3.
GAME NOTES: TWo teams at the bottom of the Big 12 Conference standings will
try to salvage some dignity on Saturday afternoon, as the Texas Tech Red
Raiders ride into Jack Trice Stadium for a clash with the Iowa State Cyclones.
It has been a rather brutal campaign for Texas Tech. The Red Raiders dropped a
42-30 decision at home to Oklahoma last weekend, falling to 3-7 overall and
just 1-6 in Big 12 action. The loss to the Sooners was the third straight for
the team and seventh in the last eight games, following a 2-0 start to the
Prospects are not much brighter on the opposing sideline. Iowa State was off
last weekend, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that it is just 2-7
overall. Making matters worse, the Cyclones have not won a league game in six
tries this season, and that includes a 34-14 setback against Kansas when they
last took the field. That loss was the third straight and fifth in six games
for the team.
Texas Tech was nationally ranked when these teams met last season. The Red
Raiders, sitting at No. 20, escaped with a 42-35 victory in Lubbock to improve
to 9-3 all-time against the Cyclones.
It certainly hasn’t been made any easier for Texas Tech these last two games
with starting quarterback Davis Webb sidelined with a leg injury. The Red
Raiders’ signal caller was averaging more than 300 yards per game, while
completing 61.2 percent of his pass attempts before going down. In his place,
Patrick Mahomes has done a decent job. He really lit it up against Oklahoma,
finishing with 393 yards and four touchdowns on 27-of-50 passing. It is just
too bad the effort came in a loss.
Inconsistency at the quarterback position is a recipe for disaster for any
team, but that is especially true at Texas Tech where passing is king. The Red
Raiders are only fifth in the Big 12 in total offense (473.7 ypg), but
they have more passing yards than any team in the league (3,276).
Jakeem Grant and Brad Marquez are the best pass-catchers on the roster. Grant
has amassed 760 yards and six touchdowns on 57 total receptions, while Marquez
has gained 686 yards and seven scores on 56 grabs. Reginald Davis (28
receptions, 305 yards, five TDs) is third on the team in receptions, while
Devin Lauderdale (25 receptions, 409 yards, four TDs) leads the squad in yards
per reception (16.4). Lauderdale finished with 83 yards and a touchdown on a
team-high five catches against Oklahoma.
Although running the ball is not as high a priority for the Red Raiders,
DeAndre Washington has still turned in a solid season. He has only one
touchdown, but he has managed 852 yards on 153 carries, amounting to an
average of 5.6 yards per carry. Justin Stockton has been a nice change of pace
back, picking up 392 yards and four touchdowns on only 44 attempts.
While the Red Raiders are clearly sound on offense, even without Webb, they
really suffer from a lack of defensive production. They are allowing 41.6
points and 504.5 yards per game, which are the two worst marks in the Big 12.
This may be a week for improvement for the Texas Tech defense, as it faces a
lackluster offensive team in Iowa State. The Cyclones rank next-to-last in the
Big 12 in total offense (361.7 ypg) and eighth in scoring (24.4 ppg). They
finished with 373 yards against Kansas, while letting up 514 to the Jayhawks,
who are the only team producing fewer yards per game in the league.
Grant Rohach made his first start of the season at quarterback against Kansas
and did some things well. He finished with 275 yards and two touchdowns, but
he completed a lackluster 25-of-50 pass attempts and was intercepted once. Of
course, it is difficult to complete passes when under constant pressure, and
Rohach certainly felt the heat in falling victim to four sacks.
Rohach got into a rhythm with D’Vario Montgomery in the loss to Kansas.
Montgomery finished with 130 yards and a touchdown on eight receptions. He is
now second on the team in receiving yards (448) and third in receptions (32).
E.J. Bibbs (40 receptions, 339 yards, seven TDs) and Allen Lazard (39
receptions, 513 yards, three TDs) are the more prominent targets, although
Bibbs is only averaging 8.5 yards per catch.
Aaron Wimberly handles most of the rushing duties for the Cyclones, but those
have been rather limited. He has only 89 carries this season, which have
yielded 390 yards and four touchdowns. He put forth a fine effort against
Kansas, producing 97 yards on 15 carries. The rest of the team combined for
just a single rushing yard beyond Wimberly’s efforts in the loss.
Iowa State is only marginally better than Texas Tech when it comes to defense.
The Cyclones are letting up 495 yards per game, which ranks near the bottom in
the Big 12. Obviously, they have shown no signs of improvement, as they were
run over by a normally-ineffective Kansas squad last time out.
Mahomes played well against Oklahoma and the Red Raiders hung tough in the
contest with a nationally-ranked foe. Iowa State has shown no such signs of
life all season. Betting on Texas Tech on the road is a dangerous proposition,
but its offensive firepower makes it the favorite here.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Texas Tech 38, Iowa State 31