Texas Tech is coming off another hard-to-swallow loss to TCU.
The Red Raiders got trambled on defense, as the Horned Frogs rushed for just under 400 yards. It was a loss that erased any confidence from the West Virginia victory and was far too reminiscent of the 70-35 loss the Red Raiders suffered to Texas just two weeks prior. Luckily for Texas Tech, it now gets to face off against a Kansas team that has put up some of the worst numbers in Divison I football this season. The Red Raiders have an opportunity to get back on track and they need to capitalize on it.
Here are five things every Texas Tech fan needs to know about Kansas:
Through the first five games of Lance Leipold’s coaching career at Kansas, the Jayhawks look to be battling their typical struggles. Out of the 130 Division I football teams playing this season, Kansas is 122nd in points scored per game (17.2) and 128th in points allowed per game (43.8). The Jayhawks struggled to do pretty much anything well, with their only win of the season coming against South Dakota on a last-minute touchdown pass. They’ve had two games where they scored in the single digits, while their opponent scored at least 45 points. Texas Tech is just under a 17-point favorite in this game according to ESPN, which given the Red Raiders’ recent defensive struggles should show just how rough the Jayhawks have looked.
Mean Green Bean
Mansfield product Jason Bean is leading the Jayhawks at quarterback after three seasons at North Texas. Last season in seven starts for the Mean Green, Bean totaled 1131 yards, 14 touchdowns and five interceptions through the air. He’s also not afraid to use his legs, picking up 346 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns. This year, Bean is leading the Jayhawks in both passing and rushing yards. Through the air, he’s picked up 852 yards and five touchdowns, while throwing three interceptions. On the ground, he’s rushed for 291 yards and two touchdowns, averaging 4.9 yards per carry. Bean is certainly deserving of Texas Tech’s attention, especially considering the ability with his legs.
Devin Neal has accompanied Bean very well in the backfield. The true freshman running back has put up almost identical rushing stats to Bean’s — 264 yards, two touchdowns and 4.9 yards per carry. Neal’s ability gives the Kansas offense the ability to run some option looks, with both the quarterback and running back showing themselves as component runners. Given Texas Tech’s recent struggles with its run defense, the Red Raiders will need to establish a game plan to prevent the Jayhawks from getting easy points.
Trevor Wilson is a very interesting wide receiver. Wilson was quietly one of the best receivers in the MAC last year and his speed is starting to turn heads in the Big 12. In 12 career games, Wilson is averaging 19 yards per reception. The 18.1 yards per catch he’s averaged this season are the third-most in the Big 12. While Texas Tech certainly needs to devote most of its defensive game plan to stopping the run, Wilson is the guy that could beat them over the top if they fall asleep in the secondary. It’s still on Bean to make the throw, though.
While Kansas’s defense has been one of the worst in college football this season, there’s been one bright spot. Kenny Logan Jr. made the move from corner to safety this off-season and it’s been a great change for him. Logan has defended four passes, forced two fumbles and totaled 36 tackles this season. He’s a guy that Texas Tech running back SaRodorick Thompson said has caught his eye watching tape this week. Thompson correctly mentioned Logan as someone who’s not afraid to get into the box and stop the run. While Logan is also fifth in the Big 12 in total kickoff return yards, he’s someone quarterback Henry Colombi needs to keep an eye out for on Saturday.
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