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Red Raiders defense trying to cut down on big plays

Of the 62 big-yard plays the Tech defense has given up, 25 have come on the ground while 36 have been through the air

Posted: November 14, 2013 - 11:53pm  |  Updated: November 15, 2013 - 1:21am
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Texas Tech will try to limit big plays on Saturday against Baylor. The Bears have made a living this year on long strike touchdowns. (Scott MacWatters)  Scott MacWatters / AJ Media
Scott MacWatters / AJ Media
Texas Tech will try to limit big plays on Saturday against Baylor. The Bears have made a living this year on long strike touchdowns. (Scott MacWatters)
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In the past three games, the Texas Tech defense allowed 22 big plays for a total of 622 yards.

Defensive coordinator Matt Wallerstedt sets the standard for big plays as 12 or more rushing yards and 20 or more passing yards.

The Red Raiders allowed at least seven of these big plays in six out of their 10 games this year but held Iowa State to three, Texas State and TCU to four and Stephen F. Austin to five.

Of the 62 big-yard plays the Tech defense has given up, 25 have come on the ground while 36 have been through the air.

“Obviously (we’re) disappointed,” Wallerstedt said. “I think we just haven’t played up to expectations the last three weeks. We’ve given up a lot of big plays.”

Last week against Kansas State, Tech gave up seven big plays for a total of 171 yards.

As a whole, the Red Raiders allowed the Wildcats 367 yards of total offense.

On the other 49 plays from scrimmage for Kansas State, Texas Tech gave up only 196 yards.

“There’s still a lot of good ball,” Wallerstedt said. “That tells us regardless of who we have on the field, we should be able to get the job done.”

Limiting the big plays will be important against Baylor, a team that has 111 of them so far this season. The Bears lead the FBS this season in plays of 30-yards plus (52) and plays of 40-yards plus (37).

“This will be a huge challenge,” Wallerstedt said. “This will be one of the best groups we’ve seen.”

Junior running back Lache Seastrunk has 24 plays for 580 yards, but after suffering a groin injury last week against the Sooners his status has been listed as day-to-day.

Third-string back freshman Shock Linwood has 14 big plays for 358 yards on the season.

On the outside, senior wide receiver Tevin Reese has 15 plays for 655 yards but is out for the rest of the regular season due to a dislocated wrist sustained against Oklahoma.

Senior receiver Antwan Goodley is close behind with 15 plays for 652 yards.

While injuries have plagued the Red Raiders on the defensive side of the ball, Wallerstedt and senior defensive lineman Kerry Hyder mentioned that Tech might be trying to do too much.

Routine tackles have been missed and gaps haven’t been played correctly these past three weeks.

“I’d say not being focused,” Hyder said. “We have guys that are fully capable of making the plays. But we’re not making plays when it’s time to make them. We’re in the right positions, but we’re not tackling well. Or we’re not in the right position and they’re going to break a long one on us. We’re giving up too many yards after contact, and we have to tackle better in the next couple games.”

Texas Tech wants to get back to its aggressive play earlier in the season, flying to the ball and making tackles.

When the offense struggled early on, the defense still gave the Red Raiders a chance to win.

“We’ve got to get back to that swagger,” Wallerstedt said. “Certainly when you give up this many points and this many yards, those guys are going to take it personally. We’re taking it personally and trying to find a way.”

 

krista.pirtle@lubbockonline.com

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Big plays don't add up!

"Of the 62 big-yard plays the Tech defense has given up, 25 have come on the ground while 36 have been through the air."

What happened on the other play? A fake FG? That's 61 plays. And that's really way too many to be giving up to have a good chance to win.

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Tackling

Kerry Hyder hit the nail on the head , tackling and focus. IF tomorrow ,IF the defense can tackle and stay focused we may have a chance and eliminate the big plays, if not, it will be a long afternoon..

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Big plays and focus and tackling

If the defense can force some three and outs, they can keep it competitive for a while. The offense will also have to keep from turning it over at all to have a chance!

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