Down on one knee, sophomore quarterback Davis Webb looked on from the sideline as West Virginia kicker Josh Lambert set up to attempt a 55-yard field goal.
With three seconds left on the clock, Webb could only watch as Lambert successfully kicked the football through the uprights to give the Mountaineers a 37-34 victory Saturday at Jones Stadium.
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5.6 The West Virginia defense is averaging 5.6 three-and-outs per game, ranking in the Top 15 nationally
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C-A-I Yds TD Lg
Clint Trickett 146-210-4 1,902 10 68
No. Yds. Avg. TD Lg
Rushel Shell 87 380 4.4 4 28
W. Smallwood 42 155 3.7 1 16
Andrew Buie 19 109 5.7 1 26
Dreamius Smith 25 102 4.1 1 14
No. Yds Avg. TD Lg
Kevin White 48 765 15.9 4 68
Mario Alford 32 387 12.1 4 43
W. Smallwood 16 240 15.0 0 50
J. Thompson 14 174 12.4 1 32
Rushel Shell 13 95 7.3 0 19
Daikiel Shorts 11 144 13.1 1 21
Offense: Projected starters
Pos. Player Class
LT Le’Raven Clark Jr.
Tech needs to run more behind Clark, Polk
LG James Polk Sr.
Moving to the left side after Morales hurt
C Jared Kaster Jr.
Run game only averaged 3.3 ypr last week
RG Baylen Brown So.
Returned last week from an injury
RT Reshod Fortenberry Sr.
Is paired well with Clark on the edge
QB Davis Webb So.
Davis Webb threw for 462 yards as the No.16 Red Raiders won 37-27 over West Virginia on Oct. 19, 2013. Texas Tech scored 21 unanswered points after falling behind by double digits late in the third quarter to move into sole possession of first place in the conference. The win pushed Texas Tech to 7-0 on the season.
Stemming the tide
Texas Tech is trying to end a seven-game losing streak in Big 12 play. It’s the Red Raiders’ longest drought against league opponents since a nine-game skid that bridged the 1984 and 1985 seasons. Four of those nine losses came against ranked teams.
In the current seven-game losing streak, five of the opponents were ranked when they beat the Red Raiders.
Pressure from Pete
Both Red Raiders, Mountaineers in top 12 in the nation in passing yards
When Tech runs
West Virginia is in the middle of the pack in rushing defense. And if Davis Webb struggles again, Texas Tech could be primed for a strong rushing performance from either DeAndre Washington or Justin Stockton. The Red Raiders only average 135 rushing yards per game but are getting 5.2 yards per carry. If Texas Tech shifts its offense around these two a bit more the offense could increase its productivity.
When Tech passes
Q&A Texas Tech Defensive BackJ.J. Gaines
What does this defense need to do better this season?
“We have to get turnovers, and separating the ball from the ball carrier and that will help the defense overall.”
What do you think you need to improve on?
“I just need to get to the ball more, if the safeties are at the ball. WE are the ones that are not accounted for in the blocking scheme.”
What is your biggest goal on the football field besides winning?
Texas Tech hasn’t been kind to West Virginia. In their first match-up as Big 12 opponents, the Red Raiders stunned the then No. 4 Mountaineers 49-14 in Lubbock.
A year ago, Tech came from behind in the third quarter to capture a 37-27 win in Morgantown behind a 462-yard performance by quarterback Davis Webb. This year, the Red Raiders host a more complete and balanced Mountaineer team.
Backup cornerback Jah’Shawn Johnson had shoulder surgery this week, Texas Tech spokesman Blayne Beal confirmed Friday.
He had no immediate projection on a time frame for recovery.
The freshman from Ennis has played in four games, getting credit for five tackles. He intercepted a pass in the Sept. 25 game at Oklahoma State, the last contest in which he participated.
Injuries to Baylen Brown, Alfredo Morales have vaulted Polk into lineup again
As Texas Tech was getting ready to begin the 2013 football season, James Polk wasn’t in the starting lineup. Then he wound up starting seven games in a nine-game span.
When the Red Raiders were getting ready to begin the 2014 season, Polk was once again listed with the backups. Now he’s played nearly every snap in the last three games.
“He manages to find his way into that lineup,” offensive line coach Lee Hays said.
Texas Tech special teams coach Darrin Chiaverini and his coverage teams have dodged bullets each of the past two weeks.
The Red Raiders didn’t give up any long punt or kickoff returns against Oklahoma State or Kansas State, and OSU’s Tyreek Hill and KSU’s Tyler Lockett are two of the Big 12’s most feared weapons.
Their next assignment: Bottle up Mario Alford. West Virginia’s 5-foot-8, 178-pound senior is second in the nation with a 37.3-yard kickoff-return average, thanks largely to kick-return touchdowns against Alabama and Kansas.