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Texas Tech Welcomes #13 Oregon to Lubbock in a Primetime Showdown

Well last week sucked, but it is a new week, and I’m here to preview a new game. This week on tap for the Red Raiders is the #13 Oregon Ducks, in what should be a fun and high-scoring affair.

It’s no secret that Oregon has an electric offense that can compete with anyone. Hell, they hung 81 points on the board in a week 1 victory over Portland State. The Ducks are led by a plethora of elite talent at their skill positions, and a Heisman candidate QB. That typically means you’re going to be in for a long week.

Leading this off, I will start with none other than Bo Nix. After some struggling years at Auburn, Nix finally found his footing in Eugene last season, and he’s looking to build off of that this season.

Nix was a Heisman candidate until late last season where he had a couple of down games. Before that point though, Nix was one of the nations best dual-threat QBs. Over the course of last year, Nix compiled 3,593 yards and 29 TDs through the air, but he also did his part in the rushing game, adding in 510 yards and 14 TDs. When I say he’s dual-threat, I’m not playing around. Last year at Stanford, Nix had 6 carries for 141 yards and 2 TDs. If you let him run the ball, he will destroy your defense if you’re not careful. The only “knock” I really have on Nix really isn’t even a knock. Nix loves to make big plays, and sometimes that can lead to some wild throws. He likes to take shots and make big plays both through the air and on the ground, and if Tech wants to take advantage of that, they need to be ready to make plays. If he tries to take the top off the defense and make some big throws, the secondary needs to be prepared to make plays whether that’s breaking up passes, or flat out forcing turnovers.

In the running game, I expect the Ducks to use multiple guys to attack the Tech defensive front. They have a number of talented running backs on the roster, including last years leading rusher Bucky Irving. Irving last year averaged over 6 yards a carry and broke the 1000 yard mark. In week 1 Irving only had 4 carries, but he happened to take those 4 carries for 119 yards and 2 TDs. For anyone counting, that just so happens to be almost 30 yards per carry. Another threat in the running game is going to be sophomore Jordan James. James didn’t get a ton of touches last season, but he kicked off this season with a 10 carry 86 yard performance, and also turned in 3 TDs. This Duck rushing attack is lethal if you aren’t careful, and Tech is going to have to bring their A game defensively.

On the receiving front, Oregon is led by their top returning receiver from last year in Troy Franklin. Franklin last year hauled in 61 catches for 891 yards and 6 TDs. Franklin got off to a hot start in week 1, reeling in 7 passes for 106 yards and 2 TDs. Behind him was USC transfer Gary Bryant. Bryant himself hauled in 7 catches for 100 yards and 2 TDs in an impressive week 1 outing. Other than those guys, one name to look out for is Alabama transfer Traeshon Holden. Holden didn’t have crazy numbers in week 1 or at Alabama, but Holden is an extremely talented receiver and could create some problems for the Red Raider secondary.

Defensively Oregon is going to be a solid front with playmakers all over. They have a lot of talent, but they shockingly had 0 week 1 sacks against a lowly Portland State offensive line, and also didn’t force any turnovers. I don’t necessarily know what to expect from this defense, but there should be opportunities there for the Red Raiders to move the football.

Oregon is obviously one of the most talented football teams in the country, arguably the best team Tech will see all season. They have a ton of offensive talent and one of the absolute best dual-threat QBs in the country. Tech is going to be in for a fight, but a fight I think they can win with good play-calling and being the tougher team. It should be a very fun game in Lubbock on Saturday night.



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