Texas Tech football: The top 5 Red Raider moments of 2020

Oct 31, 2020; Lubbock, Texas, USA; A Texas Tech Red Raiders football sits on the field before the game against the Oklahoma Sooners at Jones AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 31, 2020; Lubbock, Texas, USA; A Texas Tech Red Raiders football sits on the field before the game against the Oklahoma Sooners at Jones AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports /
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LUBBOCK, TEXAS – OCTOBER 24: Cornerback Zech McPhearson #8 of the Texas Tech Red Raiders celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the second half of the college football game against the West Virginia Mountaineers on October 24, 2020 at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas. (Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images)
LUBBOCK, TEXAS – OCTOBER 24: Cornerback Zech McPhearson #8 of the Texas Tech Red Raiders celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the second half of the college football game against the West Virginia Mountaineers on October 24, 2020 at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas. (Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images) /

No. 4: Zech McPhearson’s scoop and score vs. WVU

Our no. 4 moment this year was a gift from the football gods…and the West Virginia offense.  And when it happened, we had the faintest moment of hope that the season was about to turn around.

In the middle of the 4th quarter of Tech’s 34-27 victory over the Mountaineers in Lubbock, Red Raider corner Zech McPhearson scooped up a fumble and returned it 56 yards for the game-winning touchdown.

Though the Red Raider corner gets credit for the touchdown, it was a pair of linebackers who made this play.  Surrounding WVU receiver Sam James, who had caught a swing pass, Jacob Morgenstern and Colin Schooler teamed up to strip the ball, which bounced right to McPhearson, who did the rest.

The significance of this moment could have been far greater than it ultimately was.  In fact, at the time that it happened, it wasn’t crazy to believe that this was going to be the point when the Red Raiders’ season turned around.

At this point, Tech was just 1-3 on the year and was in the midst of a 3-game losing streak.  Also, don’t forget that WVU entered this game 3-1 on the year and believing they were a Big 12 contender.

So when Tech took down the Mountaineers in the first career start of backup QB Henry Colombi‘s career, it was a moment for us all to hope and believe that better times were right around the corner.  After all, if Tech could beat the team that entered the game with the nation’s no. 1 overall defense, then we thought Wells’ team should be able to hang with anyone.

That proved to be flawed reasoning as this game was just an anomaly on the 2020 schedule.  But for one moment, that old Jones Stadium magic had returned as the Red Raiders got another one of those wacky home-field bounces that used to go their way far more often than they have in recent years.