The Texas Tech Red Raiders have some work to do in order to get ready for the Texas State Armadillos in the opener. Coach Ed “Straight Arrow” Generro and Paul Blake “arm of the armadillos,” are waiting. Actually, Texas State is real these days, their called the Bobcats and they’re not based off the early ’90s film “Necessary Roughness.” And I’m pretty sure they don’t have Kathy Ireland as their placekicker.
But TSU is just one part of TTU’s very weak non-conference schedule. They should be 4-0 when heading into Big 12 play. And like last year, they might have a losing conference record but still win a New Year’s Day bowl.
“Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s life” for Chad Glasgow. The former TCU safeties coach brings his 4-2-5 defensive scheme to Lubbock. He’s the full-time coordinator now. And yes, the Raiders are learning their 3rd scheme in as many years.
That’s the 2nd time I’ve referenced “Necessary Roughness” in the 77 (SMU was the first, as they no doubt inspired the movie) and we still have 31 teams left.
2010 was: offense was like a multiple orgasm, defense was like a the ugliest cold sore you’ll ever have. No wonder they fired the D Coordinator right before the Ticket City Bowl (Red Raiders were 114th in total defense, 118th in passing, 93rd in scoring) Although 8-5 with a bowl win (45-38 over Northwestern, which I witnessed from the Cotton Bowl press box) is nothing to sneeze at. They’ll miss QB Taylor Potts, yet another stellar system quarterback, and their three best WRs. RB Baron Batch is gone too.
BMOCs: New QB Seth Doege is experienced only in mop-up duty, but he’s more mobile and Graham Harrelllike than Potts; WR Marcus Kennard is the best of what’s around at that position. Mike Leach was exceptional at recruiting receivers, but it’s easy to do that when you throw like 60 times a game. But now TTU is recruiting backs too. Ronnie Daniels may be considered the best running back in his class.
2011 will be fruitful if: If the new system on D works with an entirely new starting front seven. Given how stopping anybody was never an option last year, having all new players could be a good thing. The offense was pretty solid last year, plenty of talent, and the line will set the pace for everyone else.
2011 will be awful if: They play like they did in the second half versus Northwestern in the Ticket City Bowl. You can run and score, but you can’t hide with that sieve of a defense. I wrote my entire game recap story at halftime, when Tech was up by 30 points. Yet, NU had the ball, and a chance to tie in the closing minutes. If this defense can’t close, a lot better than they did that frigid Dallas morning, this team goes nowhere.
Bottom Line: The offense is too talented, and the schedule too weak for them not to have a winning season. But they’re going in the right direction, the recruiting classes are improving, and now that they’re attracting top notch talent to the running game, the balanced O will make them more dnagerous.
TT Rankings: #39 Athlon, #32 Lindy’s, #52 Phil Steele
Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, an official Google News site that generates millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Walter Football.com, Yardbarker, and Fox Sports
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