One of the many benefits Mike Gundy with his 4-1 squad is the they are absolutely 100% road tested. The Cowboys have already been away from Stillwater for three of their first five games, so taking a trip to Lubbock to make it four out of six isn’t really an issue.
Texas Tech and Oklahoma State find themselves in a similar position heading into this contest. Both already have a loss in conference play and another could easily find them on the outside looking in when it comes to the Big 12 championship game.
Here are three questions about the Red Raiders leading up to Saturday’s game.
1. Will starting Jett Duffey make a difference?
A week ago Matt Wells tried to go with a two-quarterback system against Oklahoma in Norman. Starter Jackson Tyner was ineffective, going just 1-5 for 2 yards. Duffey moved the ball but but was in a 14-0 hole before he ever stepped on the field.
This week Wells has named Duffey the starter, trusting that things will go better with his most experienced backup. As a dual-threat quarterback, Duffey will have the ability to keep Oklahoma State’s defense more occupied but can he be effective? Against Oklahoma he was 11-of-20 passing for 120 yards and ran 7 times for just 16 yards.
2. Which version of the Texas Tech defense will Oklahoma State face?
Before last weekend the Red Raiders were thought to be much improved on the defensive side of the ball. Texas Tech traveled to Norman having allowed an average of 13.6 points per game. Jalen Hurts and company rung them up for 55 points and 644 yards of offense.
Now the Red Raiders transition from the explosiveness of Jalen Hurts to an equally dangerous offensive weapon in Chuba Hubbard. The nation’s leading rusher, Hubbard will be at the center of the Texas Tech defensive game plan.
Oklahoma State ranks 15th nationally in scoring at 40.8 points per game.
3. Can the Red Raiders play a clean game?
Texas Tech is notorious for drawing flags and the last two weeks seem to indicate that hasn’t changed under new head coach Matt Wells. Against Arizona and Oklahoma the Red Raiders were flagged 15 times for 125 yards. That was enough to see them drop from top 25 nationally in penalties per game after two weeks to now sitting at No. 42 in both penalty yards and penalties per game.
The general consensus is that Tech hasn’t handled the pressure of road trips to Arizona and Oklahoma very well. Now that they’re back in front of the home crowd can they clean things up again?
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