Two rivals from the Lone Star State meet Saturday as Texas takes on Texas Tech in college football’s Week 4 Big 12 opener.
Both sides are 2-1 this year: Texas with two easy wins outside of conference plus a one-point loss to Alabama; and Tech with a win over a then-ranked Houston but with a 13-point loss en route to NC State.
Here’s what you need to know about this weekend’s matchup.
When: Saturday 24 September
Time: 3:30 p.m. East
Television: ESPN Network
Stream: fuboTV (start free trial)
Odds, points distribution, betting lines
Money line: UT -300 TECH +200
FPI pick: Texas 80.5%
what you need to know
Texas. Not exactly news that Bijan Robinson is the engine of the Texas offensive. The running back is first in the Big 12 with 147.67 total yards per game, scoring (12 ppg), total points (36), and total TDs (6), and second in rush yards (311), rushing TDs (5), and Rush yards per game (103.7). Having Robinson as a credible threat in play action is helping longhorn receivers like Xavier Worthy gain ground on Tech’s back seven, who are struggling with coverage, 1 of a dozen FBS teams to make at least 3 pass- Allow games from 50. plus meters this season.
texas tech Don’t overlook the Red Raiders’ ability to put Robinson and the Longhorn Attack in jeopardy overall. Tech is playing better than expected on the line, ranks 9th in FBS so far and only allows one shadow over 2 ypc, is 18th with 82.7 rush ypg and is in the top 20 nationally with under 90 rushing yards per game and overall 0.7 rushing landings. The unit can plug holes and shrink the pocket with a series of tackles behind the line to challenge Robinson early.
Texas vs. Texas Tech: Fast Facts
+ Tech is 4th nationally with 373.7 yards per game
+Texas is 101st nationally in 3rd down offense (.333)
+ Tech has a revenue margin of minus 1.67, ranked 123rd nationally
+Texas is 7-1 when outperforming opponents under Steve Sarkisian and 0-7 when outperformed by opponents
+ Tech is 18th nationally in run defense and allows 82.7 ypg
+ Texas is 1-6 on 0-29 points below Sarkisian and 6-2 on 30 or more points
+ Texas Tech has kept opponents under 30 points in 6 straight games
+ Texas is 2-6 below Sark if the game is decided by 1-9 points
+ Tech is 14-12 all-time in Big 12 opening games but 0-5 in opening games against Texas
+ Texas is 4-2 behind Sark if he wins the turnover spread and 1-4 if he loses it
+ Tech is 115th nationally with 101.7 ypg
+ UT is 4-1 if it wins the TOP under Sarkisian and 3-7 if it loses
+Texas Tech is 5-4 in Big 12 home openings
+ Texas is 1-7 below Sark when conceding 30+ points
Texas vs. Texas Tech Prediction
When it comes to turnovers, Texas should prevail here: The Longhorns have only 1 turnover in 3 games and none in their last 2. Donovan Smith has thrown 5 picks in his last 2 games for Tech with 3 TD passes.
But the Red Raiders can still get the ball up in the air. Only 3 other teams do better than Tech, who has nearly 374 passing yards per game and has the physicality in the front seven that can challenge Texas’ plan to run the ball with power early in the game.
A few net zero or negative games in the first quarter and Tech can establish a key rhythm by forcing the Longhorn offense off the field on 3rd downs. QB is still a question for Texas: Quinn Ewers will be in uniform for the game against Alabama after injury, but it’s unknown if he will play.
Whoever does this has a distinct advantage in the skill positions compared to Texas Tech, particularly in receivers as the Longhorn receivers do well against the secondary Red Raiders.
College Football HQ Prediction: Texas 37, Texas Tech 31
According to the AP Top 25 poll
- State of Ohio
- State of Oklahoma
- NC state
- Ole Fraulein
- guard forest
- Texas A&M
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