WVU must learn from loss vs. Texas Tech
College Football Videos
Texas Tech unveiled the perfect game plan against West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith.
The strategy contributed to a season-low scoring output and a 49-14 WVU loss, while exposing flaws in the Mountaineers' explosive offense for the first time this season.
The No. 17 Mountaineers (5-1, 2-1 Big 12) will play host to No. 4 Kansas State (6-0, 3-0) on Saturday.
Here is how Texas Tech slowed down WVU:
• WVU rushed for 133 yards and 3.7 yards per carry after averaging 164 yards and 5.0 yards in the previous five games.
“The run game is developed to alleviate some of the pressure off (Smith),” WVU coach Dana Holgorsen said. “We didn't finish blocks in the run game. Our running backs didn't do a good job of hitting hard.”
• Smith, who completed 29 of 55 passes for 295 yards and one touchdown, wasn't sacked but Texas Tech made him uncomfortable in the pocket.
“We made him move his feet,” Texas Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said. “We didn't get to him that much, but made him move to his right, to his left. He was noticing we were around him and when you do that, it knocks the timing off.”
“Their D-line did a great job of being aggressive. They were coming after me,” Smith said. “I had room to run. I should have used my legs a lot more.”
• Texas Tech limited Tavon Austin's yards after catch and held him without a touchdown for the first time in 2012.
“Open-field tackling was huge,” said Texas Tech safety Cody Davis, who made a game-high 13 tackles. “Everybody seemed to get them down when it was one on one.”
• Texas Tech gambled that WVU couldn't complete long passes in heavy winds. The Mountaineers finished with only one play over 20 yards.
“Going in, we were going to make him throw deep. That ball kind of fizzles in the wind on deep balls,” Tuberville said. “We disguised our corners. We walked them up, we walked them back. We probably pressed them more than what they thought we would. They're good throwing go-routes and it got them out of rhythm.”
• WVU made 10 of 21 third-down conversions after converting 53 percent on third down through its first five games. Eleven third-down plays against Texas Tech were for 5 yards or more.
“They dropped seven (into coverage) and did a great job of keeping everything in front of them,” Smith said. “They forced us into some third-and-long situations.”
John Harris is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.