Tech-Texas first half instant analysis


Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin

AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas' offense has sputtered in the first half as a short-handed Texas Tech defense has kept the Longhorns bottled up most of the game.

The Red Raiders are playing without starting defensive end Ra’Jon Henley, backup defensive end Ryan Haliburton and starting strong safety Franklin Mitchem. It hasn’t mattered as the Red Raiders’ shortened rotation has limited Texas to 124 yards and only seven first downs.

But it hasn’t been enough as Tech’s mistakes in special teams and overall sloppy play have enabled Texas to claim a 10-3 halftime lead.

Here a quick look at the first half:

Stat of the half: Coming into the game, Tech had punted twice in the first two games of the season. The Red Raiders were forced to punt five times in the first half.

Best player in the half: Texas WR/PR Jordan Shipley accounted for the game’s only touchdown on a 46-yard touchdown return. It was his second punt return for a touchdown in two seasons against the Red Raiders. Shipley has also accounted for a team-high five receptions for 28 yards.

Turning point: After the first drive, Texas’ defense made adjustments into combating Tech’s no-huddle offense. Although Taylor Potts has completed 24 of 34 passes for 163 yards, none have gone for longer than 17 yards as the Red Raiders have creased the Texas red zone only once.

Best call: Using John Chiles on a direct snap produced a 36-yard run on a direct snap from center. It helped account for the only points produced by Texas’ offense in the first half.

What Texas needs to do: Get Colt McCoy back in synch. The Longhorns’ quarterback is playing his way through a first-half funk for the second-straight week, accounted for only 70 yards on 9 of 16 passing with one interception. Tech has done a good job of keeping McCoy bottled up with two sacks that have diminished his rushing total to 6 yards.

What Texas Tech needs to do: Cut out the self-inflicted mistakes. The Red Raiders have been penalized seven times for 61 yards in the first half. It helped account for wiping out three first downs in the first half which could have kept chances to score alive. Those penalties also kept Potts and the Red Raiders behind on the chains for most of the second quarter.