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West Virginia Mountaineers Vs. Texas Tech Red Raiders Preview: Season 125, Episode 5 - The One For John Denver

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Eight straight weeks of Mountaineer football start NOW!!

Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

OPENING THOUGHTS

NO MORE BYE WEEKS!! Eight straight weeks of Mountaineer football start NOW!!

Before we get to the game preview, let’s take a minute and break down the group of lackluster teams we call the Big 12 conference. First thing I want to make sure I mention is that the possibility of a de facto Big 12 championship game in Morgantown is still in tact. Both WVU and Baylor had bye weeks and as long as the Mountaineers can take care of Texas Tech, it should still be possible as Baylor hosts Kansas. If the game were played in Lawrence, I could see the Jayhawks giving Baylor some trouble like they did against TCU last week, but the game is in Waco so...yeah. As for the rest of the conference:

Yeah. Oklahoma beat Texas to make Charlie Strong’s seat as hot as that dumpster, Iowa State lost another close game at Oklahoma State and Kansas State won a shootout against Texas Tech. Not much going on.

Off the field, the Big 12 will probably announce on Monday that they will not expand sending the University of Houston into a panic. It could be the beginning the end of our conference, but we’ll cross the bridge when we get to it...(why can’t we get a good conference?)

Anyway, we got a game in the West Texas prairie against the high scoring Texas Tech Red Raiders! Should be a great game for WVU’s first true road test of the season.

As stated in one of their articles, Viva the Matadors coined this game "The Battle for John Denver". I highly recommend that you check it out.

WHEN/WHERE

Date: Saturday, October 15th

Kickoff Time: Noon ET/11:00 AM CT

Where: Jones AT&T Stadium, Lubbock, TX

WATCH/LISTEN

TV: FS1

Streaming Video: FoxSportsGO (or the FoxSportsGO app for smartphones)

Radio: WZST Variety 101 (100.9 FM in Morgantown) and the Mountaineer Sports Network from IMG (Radio Affiliates)

Streaming Audio: Locate the Mountaineer Sports Network from IMG on TuneIn Radio (or TuneIn app for smartphones)

Satellite Radio: Sirius 81; XM 81

ODDS

Spread: Even to WVU by 1.5 (According to OddsShark)

O/U: 83-83.5

Bill C:

Spread (Home) S&P+ Projection Margin Win Prob. S&P+ Pick (ATS) F/+ Projection F/+ Pick
0.0 Texas Tech (39.0-33.2) 5.7 63.0% Texas Tech West Virginia by 0.4 West Virginia

WEATHER FORECAST

For those making the trek to West Texas, tailgate weather will be clear with temps in the upper 60s/lower 70s but will get up in to the lower 80s by halftime and in the upper 80s/lower 90s by the time the game is over. Expect some early humidity as well.

THE ENEMY

Where are they from? Lubbock, Texas

All-Time Series: WVU leads the series 3-2

Last Year: WVU 31, Tech 26

SB Nation Blog: Viva The Matadors

Record: 3-2 (1-1 Big 12)

Head Coach: Kliff Kingsbury (you know him from his staring role in Drive)

KEYS TO THE GAME

  • Take advantage of Texas Tech’s lack of defense. Against FBS competition, Tech has a scoring defense of 41.25. That’s one of the worst in the country. This would be the perfect game to air it out on offense (Skyler to Shelton!!)
  • Expose Texas Tech’s inability to rush. Lock down Patrick Mahomes and the wide receivers, and WVU’s defense should have no problem. Kansas State held Tech to 61 yards rushing last week and Kansas held the Red Raiders to 73 back on September 29. It is pretty clear that Kingsbury’s offense is one dimensional. The tough part will be stopping Mahomes.

HOW AFRAID SHOULD WE BE?

I’m going to split this part in two. On a scale of 1-10, I’m afraid of the matchup between Tech’s offense and WVU’s defense at about 8. Between WVU’s offense and Tech’s defense, I’m at about a 3. So let’s just say 5.5. I am just as afraid of Texas Tech as I would be of clowns. Not really that menacing, but can do some serious mental damage.

PREDICTION THAT WILL BE WRONG

Like I mentioned in the staff predictions, WVU defense > Tech defense. I think that the Red Raiders will keep the game from getting out of hand well into the third quarter, but I think their loose defense will give way going into the fourth quarter to have the Mountaineers break it wide open.

West Virginia 49, Texas Tech 31