Saturday, October 13, 2012
Instant analysis: Texas Tech 49, WVU 14
By David Ubben
LUBBOCK, Texas -- That was a first-class beatdown from start to finish. Texas Tech turned in its best performance of the season on the same day West Virginia turned in its worst. The result: a 49-14 loss that ranks among the most embarrassing for West Virginia in a long time.
Geno Smith looked out of sorts and uncomfortable, and the Texas Tech defense played inspired all game. Let's take a closer look at some instant analysis:
It was over when: West Virginia failed to score on its first three drives of the second half and Texas Tech scored a touchdown to take a 42-7 lead. Any hopes of a comeback from a 35-7 halftime deficit were never realized.
Game ball goes to: Texas Tech defensive coordinator Art Kaufman. He confused Geno Smith (29-of-55, 275 yards, TD) and made the passer uncomfortable all day. The secondary covered well, but Smith was rushed constantly and flushed from the pocket with no options downfield for most of the day. The Red Raiders had a solid scheme and put together a complete team performance defensively. Smith avoided throwing his first interception of the season, but that was about the only bright spot for the Mountaineers' offense.
Stat of the game: West Virginia was just 2-of-7 on fourth downs. Last week against Texas, WVU was 5-of-5.
Stat of the game 2: Texas Tech coach Tommy Tuberville is now 6-2 versus top-five teams all-time, with wins over No. 1 Oklahoma and No. 5 West Virginia in consecutive seasons.
Unsung hero of the game: Seth Doege, QB, Texas Tech. Much of the focus Saturday will be on what Texas Tech's defense did to West Virginia, but Doege shredded West Virginia's defense and found open receiver after open receiver. He finished with a career-high 504 yards and six touchdowns on 32-of-42 passing, and put the ball on the money, into the hands of his playmakers all day.
What Texas Tech learned: This team has the potential to be much better than anyone expected. Iowa State? Good team. West Virginia? Obviously a good team. Oklahoma showed last week that Texas Tech can look very average if not bad, but the potential is clear. Can Texas Tech keep doing it every week? A Casey Pachall-less TCU team awaits next week. Texas Tech should win that game handily, which would make it officially bowl-eligible after a five-win season in 2011. Then again, Texas Tech beat No. 1 Oklahoma for its fifth win of the season last year and didn't win again the rest of the season. Which will it be?
What West Virginia learned: The road to a Big 12 title won't be an easy one. Texas Tech got blasted a week ago, and this week, the Red Raiders did the blasting on West Virginia's second trip west to Texas in two weeks. The travel woes and the wind? I'm not buying it. In an unfamiliar league trying to learn unfamiliar personnel, the potential was high that somebody would thwack West Virginia at some point. It just so happened to be Texas Tech. Lubbock has always had a Bermuda Triangle feel about it, and West Virginia experienced that firsthand Saturday, leaving with a blistered behind.