The Texas Tech Red Raiders roll into Kansas State to take on the Wildcats following a thrilling OT victory over Texas last Saturday. The Wildcats come in off of their own huge win, a defeat of the previously undefeated Oklahoma Sooners. The Big XII action is starting to heat up and the sparks will fly on Saturday with these two high-powered offenses. The opening kick is scheduled for 12:00pm EST.
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Riding HighThe high-powered Texas Tech Red Raiders offense came through yet again and the Red Raiders won another overtime thriller at home, this time upending the Texas Longhorns 37-34 in overtime. It marked the second-straight home game that the Red Raiders needed overtime to pull out a win, after defeating Houston 33-30 in 2OT just two weeks ago. With the win, the Red Raiders are now 3-1 on the season after playing three-straight ranked opponents.
"I'm really proud of our guys," Texas Tech coach Joey McGuire said in his post-game press conference. "It was 31-17 and they could have given up at any point. They didn't. We asked them coming out of the half to keep fighting and good things would happen. These guys believe. When you have results like this it just fires that belief up even more."
It was a thrilling start to the Big XII season for Texas Tech and sets them up for their fourth straight match with a ranked team as they ready for their visit to K-State. Quarterback Donovan Smith led the way with 331 yards passing on 38-of-56 pass completions. He engineered the always gutsy Red Raiders' offense to 6-of-8 fourth down conversions and led the team back from a 24-14 deficit at the half. Wide receiver Myles Price had a career-day with 13 catches and running back SaRodorick Thompson Jr. ran for 70 yards and a touchdown in the come-from-behind win. The Red Raiders finished with 479 yards of total offense.
On the defensive side of the ball, Texas Tech allowed 426 total yards but also held the Longhorns to just 3-of-9 on third down conversions. Tyree Wilson led the Red Raiders with six tackles and a sack.
Texas Tech has certainly been led by their offense as they continue this run through quality opponents. The Red Raiders are ranked 65th in scoring offense and 43rd in total offense. Additionally, Texas Tech is ranked just 102nd in rushing offense but 11th in passing offense. On the defensive side of the ball, TTU is ranked 76th in scoring defense and 39th in total defense. Against the run, the Red Raiders are ranked 37th against the run and 65th against the pass. Finally, the Red Raiders are ranked 85th in turnover differential.
The Wildcats are HungryK-State continued to be a nemesis for Big XII rival Oklahoma this past Saturday as they knocked off the Sooners, 41-34 on Saturday night in Oklahoma. The 41 points represented the most points that Kansas State has ever scored in Oklahoma in their storied rivalry. With the win, the Wildcats improved to 3-1 on the season and lessened the sting of their 17-10 upset loss to Tulsa the week before. Kansas State now finds themselves ranked 25th in the latest poll.
"What a great effort for four quarters," K-State head coach Chris Klieman said after the game. "We didn't have a letdown. We knew there were going to be some ups and downs, but we talked about putting the foot on the gas, and believing we were a better football team, and believing in each other, and we were going to go against 84,000-plus against the 70 that we brought, and it was good enough if our kids continued to believe and make plays.
"And they did."
Transfer quarterback Adrian Martinez led the way with 234 yards passing on 21 completions with a touchdown and an additional four rushing touchdowns on 21 carries for 148 yards rushing. Pre-season All-American RB Deuce Vaughn added 116 yards rushing on 25 carries. It was Martinez that sealed the win with a run over 60 yards on third and 16 with the Sooners trying to get the ball back. The run set up the final touchdown that sealed the win. The Wildcats finished with 509 total yards of offense to go along with their record number of points in Norman.
Defensively, the Wildcats survived the Sooners' onslaught. They allowed 550 yards of total offense, including over 300 in the air and 200 on the ground. They were tough on 3rd downs, as the Sooners converted on just 4-0f-13 third down attempts.
Wallpaper Wednesday ⚒️ pic.twitter.com/8ZzJidxQoG— K-State Football (@KStateFB) September 28, 2022
Kansas State hopes to improve to 4-1 with a victory over a well-tested Texas Tech team on Saturday. Offensively, the Wildcats rank 52nd in scoring offense and 68th in total offense. The Wildcats are ranked 11th in rushing offense and just 112th in passing offense behind former Nebraska QB Martinez. On the defensive side of the ball, K-State is ranked 32nd in scoring defense and 53rd in total defense. The team is ranked 75th against the run and 47th against the pass. Finally, the Wildcats are ranked 9th in turnover differential.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
The Red Raiders continue one of the toughest stretches of football in the country, playing their fourth-ranked opponent in four games. This game is a study of contrasting styles. The Red Raiders control the game with the pass while the Wildcats want to run. More interestingly, the Red Raiders' defense is better against the run while the Wildcats' defense is better against the pass. In a game like this, I'm going to lean towards the quarterback I trust more, in this case, I trust Donovan Smith more than I do Adrian Martinez. While Martinez has been excellent with the ball so far, his history says otherwise and he spent a career in Nebraska turning the ball over in big spots. I'm confident that the Red Raiders' defense can contain him on the ground to some degree and force him to beat them with his arm. This is where Martinez will fall flat. The Red Raiders will have some turnovers themselves but they play at such a breakneck pace offensively, they can afford a turnover or two. Martinez will make a turnover or two himself but he will come in a big spot in this one. The Red Raiders will follow a similar formula that Tulane did to upset the Wildcats on the road; contain the ground game and force Martinez to throw the ball.
Take the points and go with the Red Raiders.
Full-Game Total Pick
If you like the Red Raiders, and I do, you know that the team's key to victory is to contain the Wildcats' run game and force the ball in the air. In addition, Texas Tech will need to control the tempo of the game with their own passing game and grind out drives. TTU will go for fourth downs, they attempted eight fourth down conversions vs. Texas, and they will lengthen drives with their short passing game. In doing so, they will keep Martinez and the K-State offense on the sidelines and keep this line down slightly. This will not be a Wisconsin Big Ten grinder, but it will be slower-paced for a Big XII game.
Take the under, 56.5 points.