Few teams have a chance to make a bigger statement in the ninth week of the college football season than Texas Tech. The Red Raiders enter Saturday as one of the few remaining undefeated clubs in the country, but they still aren’t considered by many to be a legitimate national championship contender.
No.10 Texas Tech sits at 7-0, but they haven’t gotten the same respect as other BCS schools who have a loss. Despite a 37-point defeat last week, Clemson still ranks ahead of the Red Raiders at No.9, while Stanford comes in at No.8, even though they lost to unranked Utah.
This week, Texas Tech has a chance to get their best win of 2013. They beat No.24 TCU in September, but the Horned Frogs have since fallen below .500. On Saturday, Texas Tech will visit No.15 Oklahoma.
The Sooners rebounded last week against Kansas, following their surprising loss to Texas. Oklahoma was a two-touchdown favorite against the Longhorns, but ended up losing by 16. They’ll try to avoid another upset this weekend.
Oklahoma’s recent struggles have come at the hands of their opponents’ rushing attack. Texas amassed 255 yards on the ground and Kansas ran for 185. Fortunately for the Sooners, Texas Tech doesn’t do most of their damage with the running game. Their 131.7-yard average ranks them No.9 in the conference.
The Red Raiders are averaging 41.1 points per game, mostly, on the strength of their passing attack. Despite losing starting quarterback Baker Mayfield after five games, the offense hasn’t missed a beat. In his first ever road start, freshman Davis Webb made history against West Virginia. He threw for 462 yards against the Mountaineers, becoming the first freshman in school history to go over the 400-yard mark in his first two starts.
Texas Tech will try to match their strength with Oklahoma’s strength. The Sooners’ pass defense has been the best in the nation, allowing just 149.7 yards in the air per game. Even in their loss to Texas, quarterback Case McCoy only threw for 190 yards.
Recent history suggests that 2013 will be Texas Tech’s year. In the past nine seasons of the Red River Rivalry, neither team has won back-to-back games. Last year, Oklahoma won handily, 41-20.
Las Vegas Betting Odds: Oklahoma favored by 7 points
Over-Under: 59 points
Kickoff Time: 3:30 PM Eastern Time
TV Channel: FOX
Prediction: Texas Tech 31, Oklahoma 30