STILLWATER, Okla. — The game between Texas Tech and Oklahoma State on Saturday had been billed by some as The Battle for the Alamo.
That only turned out to be true if a battle refers to a one-sided bludgeoning, a low point on the backward slide the Red Raiders have been on the last month.
Tech was throttled by Oklahoma State, 59-21, at Boone Pickens Stadium, losing for the third time in four games and likely squandering its chance to play in the San Antonio-based Alamo Bowl next month — not to mention its chance to restore pride following last season’s shellacking at the hands of the Cowboys.
The score may have not been quite as lopsided as the 66-6 rout in Lubbock a year ago, but Oklahoma State was every bit as dominant this time around.
The Red Raiders, every bit as embarrassed.
"It just got away from us so fast," Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said.
As in lightning fast. As in down-and-out-in-the-blink-of-an-eye fast.
Tuberville didn't allow players speak to the media after the game, but it's hard to imagine they wouldn't have used some of the same words to describe Saturday's game — "embarrassing," “a nightmare," “laying an egg" — as they used this week to paint a picture of last year's humbling defeat.
Clint Chelf, a third-string quarterback to start the season, made his second straight start for the Cowboys and threw three long touchdown passes to unsung senior wide receiver Isaiah Anderson in the first half alone — strikes of 60, 33 and 66 yards.
Anderson had not caught a touchdown pass this season before Saturday.
"We competed, we just gave up too many points," said Tuberville, whose team has given up 125 of them to Oklahoma State the past two seasons.
The Tech defense, which has sprung major holes the last month following a 6-1 start to the season, surrendered 333 total yards by halftime and trailed 35-14 at that point.
Tech attempted to put seven or eight men in the box on most plays to limit the Big 12 Conference's leading rusher, Joseph Randle. But Tech's press coverage couldn't stay in front of Anderson and the Cowboys passing attack.
"Obviously, it backfired," Tuberville said of the defensive game plan.
Meanwhile, the Red Raiders couldn’t get out of their own way on offense, a recent theme that manifested itself in a big way in front of a hostile, orange-clad crowd that never ran out of reasons to cheer.
"We were our own worst enemy," Tuberville said.
Penalties, turnovers, missed assignments, drops, poor throws, bad tackles and special teams gaffes were all a part of the ugly equation for the Red Raiders, who mustered only three trips inside the red zone. Tech’s three turnovers — two Seth Doege interceptions and a fumble on a bad snap — led to three Oklahoma State touchdowns.
Adding to the Red Raider misery: The Cowboys also made end zone trips out of a pair of blocked punts by Zack Craig. Before Saturday, Tech hadn't had a punt blocked since 2008.
But that's the kind of excruciating day it was for the punchless Red Raiders in the Land of Orange. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong for a Tech team that has once again watched a strong start morph into a lackluster closing stretch.
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