Keys to the Game: Texas Tech

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Junior quarterback Tyrone Swoopes picks up a loose ball and runs toward the endzone for a touchdown in Texas' 59-20 win over Kansas on Nov. 7.
Photo Credit: Rachel Zein | Daily Texan Staff

Don't turn the ball over

The Longhorns beat West Virginia in nearly every statistical category, but turned the ball over five times in their 38-20 loss. That proved to be the difference, and Texas simply couldn’t overcome that many turnovers. West Virginia is No. 2  in the Big 12 in turnover margin, but there’s no reason for Texas to be giving the ball to the other team five times.  If the Longhorns do that against Texas Tech, the potent Red Raider offense will put up points in a hurry.

Slow down the Red Raiders

Texas Tech’s offense is among the best in the Big 12. The Red Raiders are No. 3 in total offense with sophomore quarterback Patrick Mahomes at the helm. Mahomes is No. 2 among Big 12 players in total offense, accounting for 393.2 yards per game. Texas Tech also has senior running back DeAndre Washington, who is No. 3 in the Big 12 with 116.5 yards per game. Texas needs to make the Red Raiders one-dimensional and force them to either go to the run or pass. The Red Raiders will torch the Longhorns if they are able to use a balanced attack. Tech’s record may look mediocre on paper, but this is a team that can put up points early and often. The Texas defense must try to contain the Red Raiders, because there’s no way the Texas offense can win a shootout with Tech.

Final home game

The Longhorns have to remember this is their final home game at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium this season. After this, Texas travels to Waco to play Baylor. Theoretically, this is the last truly winnable game for the Longhorns. Who knows what the attendance will look like since it’s a Thanksgiving game at night for a 4-6 team, but Texas needs to end its home schedule on a high note.