Texas Tech will face the tough task of traveling to Stillwater, Okla., in hopes of defeating Oklahoma State on senior day at Boone Pickens Stadium.
A season ago, the Cowboys traveled to Lubbock to deliver a 66-6 drubbing to the Red Raiders. This season, the Red Raiders are looking for redemption.
Senior safety D.J. Johnson said Tech’s seniors have not beaten Oklahoma State and there is a sense of repaying the favor in many of their minds.
“A lot of people don’t know, but this senior class hasn’t gotten a victory against Oklahoma State as well,” Johnson said. “People focused on the UT (games) and things like that, but Oklahoma State has been a good football team for some time now. They (have) started to get credit and get respect, and it’s about time they get their respect. But it’s going to influence us or impact us to make us want to go out there and grind harder, go out there and play to the best of our ability.
“We remember what happened last year, and we definitely want to make sure that doesn’t occur again.If possible, we want to reverse it, and make it occur the other way.”
Oklahoma State is currently dealing with a quarterback situation that still has the Cowboys unsure of who will start at 2:30 p.m. Saturday.
Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said the best answer he can offer at this point is that the coaching staff will base their decision upon whom they feel offers the best chance to have success against Tech and put the team in a position to win.
“We haven’t been in a situation like this,” Gundy said. “We hope that we have three healthy players on Saturday. There’s a chance that could happen, but we won’t know for sure until late in the week. There are still discussions taking place. The only answer I have is that we’re going to play the guy who we feel like gives us the best chance to win Saturday and have success. I don’t think there’s any perfect or right answer based on that we have three individuals that have been in our program who are getting close to being in a position to play. I don’t know that we have them all right now, but we could.”
The Cowboys have still not named a starter for Saturday’s game.
Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said it is difficult in a three-day practice scenario to put together a scheme to defend to stop two quarterbacks, and that is where being fundamentally sound in defensive assignments will benefit Tech.
“I don’t know who they’re going to start. It really doesn’t make any difference,” Tuberville said. “You’ve just got to prepare for all of them. It’s not being able to say we know who it’s going to be – if we want to scramble, slide to the left – he has a hard time throwing to his left. This is totally different. Number one, not knowing who is going to play, and knowing that probably you’re going to see more than one anyway, so we’ll prepare for all of them.”
Oklahoma State has proven to be a well-balanced team, which may benefit the Cowboys against Tech. The Cowboys rank 4th nationally in passing offense and 22nd in rushing offense.
Johnson said he thinks Oklahoma State is a pass-first team similar to Tech.
“I think the most balanced team we’ve faced has been TCU,” Johnson said. “That’s probably been the most balanced team we’ve faced running and passing-wise. From Oklahoma State, they’re more of a pass team. Like I said, they’re very similar to Tech when it comes to their offense I just feel like we have to go out there and impact that and remember what we do against our offense to make those plays against them.”