Texas Tech running back Justin Stockton matched his career-long play on a dazzling 75-yard touchdown in the first half of his team's 68-55 loss Saturday against Arizona State at Sun Devil Stadium. Stockton turned a short dump-off pass into a long run.
After securing the catch, Stockton put a spin move on the first defender, dodged a second, faked out a third and then outran the pursuit to the end zone.
TEMPE, Ariz. — After an especially disastrous Saturday 13 years ago at Missouri, Texas Tech coach Mike Leach spluttered for 40 seconds — somebody timed it – in his post-game analysis and retreated in a huff into the locker room.
I don’t know if Leach sent him out or a publicist fetched him, but defensive coordinator Lyle Setencich emerged a while later to do the explaining for a 62-31 loss. On that gray afternoon, Missouri’s Brad Smith rushed for 291 yards, 17 short of the NCAA record for a quarterback, and a school-record five touchdowns.
Texas Tech’s was quizzed last week by Stephen F. Austin. Now comes its first true test — so early in the semester, too. Texas Tech visits Tempe, Arizona on Saturday at 9 p.m. (CST). The Red Raiders passed a similar test last season against Arkansas, but only wound up with a 7-6 record — barely passing. If Texas Tech is going to do more this season, it has to start doing it Saturday.
When Texas Tech passes
What is one thing people would be surprised to find out about you?
“I like really like country music like Jason Aldean and Brett Eldridge, Luke Bryan.”
What is your favorite country songs?
“Dustin Lynch, ‘Hurricane’ is one of my favorites.”
Do you listen to it to get ready for a game?
“No, it is usually in the morning.”
What is the most played song on your iPod that is not country?
A season ago, no Pac-12 team gave up more passing yards and touchdowns than Arizona State.
Last week alone, Northern Arizona quarterback Case Cookus completed 23 of 33 passes for 369 yards and a touchdown.
This weekend, the Sun Devils will have their hands full with Texas Tech quarterback Patrick Mahomes II.
Despite playing for a little more than a half, Mahomes is second in the country with 483 passing yards.
The junior quarterback also added 57 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.
Reginald Davis extended one arm, grabbed an imaginary water bottle and took a drink.
He can do that this season — go to the sideline, that is — and the Texas Tech offense not miss a beat.
With Davis and Dylan Cantrell playing the same wide receiver position, the Red Raiders can wear down a cornerback.
“It’s pretty deadly,” Davis this week, “because both of us know what to do, know how to execute plays. You’ve got two people like that coming in back to back, it’s just hard to stop.”
In the summer of 2015, we selected an all-time Texas Tech football team in conjunction with A-J Media’s 20 Greatest Games special section. The team ran three-deep at each position, and the quarterbacks were a tough call.
Choosing the three-deep, cases could be made for at least eight men who’d played that position for the Red Raiders.
Have things changed in just a year’s time?
Q: If you weren’t playing football, what would you be doing with your life?
A: I would definitely be playing soccer and going to school somewhere. That’s something that I played for 18 years of my life. But yeah I would just be playing soccer somewhere or get a job to help out my family.
Q: So who is your favorite soccer team?
A: Chelsea, for sure.
Chris Thomsen has a background at Texas Tech, friends coaching at Texas Tech and even family on campus.
The other night, he looked on Facebook and saw a picture of his niece, a Tech graduate school student, at the Red Raiders’ football season opener against Stephen F. Austin.
“She was at the game and had a Double-T sticker on her cheek,” Thomsen said this week. “I had commented on Facebook, she’s going to have to change her colors this week and wear Sun Devils colors.
“She thought that was funny.”
QB gets shot at last year's FBS-worst pass defense
Under ordinary circumstances, it’s dangerous, foolhardy even, to draw too many conclusions from one game.
There are logical reasons, though, why Arizona State led Northern Arizona only 13-6 late in the third quarter of last week’s season opener out in Tempe. Sun Devils offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey is new to the program. Sun Devils quarterback Manny Wilkins is a sophomore and a first-time starter.
It makes sense they’d need time to work out the kinks.
Keke Coutee has one of those surnames than can be tricky. It’s pronounced Cue-TEE, not COO-tee. Actually, the man himself can make it simpler than that.
“QT, like a ‘Q’ and a ‘T,’” the Texas Tech inside receiver said.
That’s information worth knowing, since the Red Raiders and their fans are hoping to call his name for plenty of big plays and touchdowns over the next three years. The first of those came Saturday, maybe not in a fashion Coutee once envisioned.
Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury has said from the moment he took the job he’ll adjust his offensive approach from year to year to suit the personnel.
He proved it last season. Though Tech’s known the past 15 years for passing, senior running back DeAndre Washington ran for nearly 1,500 yards.
With Washington departed, Kingsbury doesn’t see his team’s 125-yard rushing output in the season opener as a reason to establish the running game.
Kliff Kingsbury says Texas Tech’s ready for the higher level of competition this week that’s expected from Arizona State.
For the next few days, though, the Tech coach figures to harp on the facets at which he judged his team lacking last weekend.
Kliff Kingsbury didn’t have time to watch Texas defeat Notre Dame in double overtime, 50-47, Sunday night.
The Texas Tech football coach was busy catching up on his Netflix shows.
“I did not (watch that game),” Kingsbury said. “I was watching ‘Narcos’ season 2. I didn’t get to see it Friday, so I was on it hard yesterday.”
Patrick Mahomes II, though, chose to watch the game.