Texas Tech will have a better showing on defense than it did last week
Against Houston, the Texas Tech defense had one of the most unusual days we’ve seen in quite some time. After allowing the Cougars to rack up 28 points with relative ease in the first half, the Red Raiders managed to pitch a shutout after halftime in a 49-28 victory.
Unfortunately, over the years, we’ve seen plenty of games in which the Texas Tech defense looked as inept as it did in the first half against Houston. However, it is tough to remember many instances when that side of the ball figured out its troubles in the blink of an eye to keep the opponent off the scoreboard after the intermission.
While that turnaround was much needed, Tech can’t afford to get off to another slow start on defense against Baylor. Fortunately, that isn’t going to happen. In fact, tonight, the defense will look more like the unit we saw against West Virginia than the one that opened the game against Houston.
The main reason is that two key starters will be back in the lineup this week. Middle linebacker and leading tackler, Jesiah Pierre will return after not suiting up against the Cougars. Meanwhile, safety Dadrion Taylor-Demerson will also be ready to go after leaving last weekend’s game in the first quarter due to tightness in his back.
Those are the two best and most important defenders that the Red Raiders have on the roster. What’s more, having two seniors back in the fray means that the freshmen who had to step into their shoes last week will see a decreased role as well. While linebacker Miquel Dingle and safety Chapman Lewis performed admirably when pressed into action, neither is ready to give this team what Pierre and Taylor-Demerson do on a weekly basis.
The Baylor offense has been nothing to write home about thus far. Averaging only 23.3 points per game, they rank 12th out of 14 teams in the conference.
However, in the two games started by Shapen, they averaged 33.5 points. That’s why this won’t be an easy night for the Red Raider defense. Still, expect that side of the ball to be better for the Red Raiders in this game than it was a week ago in the first half.