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Texas Tech Red Raiders vs. TCU Horned Frogs Pick

by | Oct 11, 2018 | cfb

Texas Tech Red Raiders (3-2 SU, 3-2 ATS) vs. Texas Christian Horned Frogs (3-2 SU, 2-3 ATS)
College Football Week 7
Date/Time: Thursday, October 11th, 2018 – 7:30 PM ET
Where: Amon G. Carter Stadium – Fort Worth, Texas
TV: ESPN
By: Keith Franks, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com

Point Spread: Texas Tech +8.5 / Texas Christian -8.5

Since TCU joined the Big 12, the two sides have met on six occasions. Each team have won three games each. Over this span, two games have gone to overtime. Last year, Texas Christian handled Texas Tech with ease defeating the Raiders in Lubbock by a score of 27-3. In the last three episodes, the away team has won outright. TCU’s most recent defeat in 2016 came in overtime at the hands of Patrick Mahomes when he was still playing ball for Texas Tech and not taking the NFL by storm with the Kansas City Chiefs. In 2016, TCU was in a transitional year and took a step back with an influx of young recruits. In 2017, Tech was without Mahomes and their offense was struggling to re-tool after his departure. On the other hand, the young Frogs matured and most of the talent featured on TCU’s offense this year was in the fold for this game, last year. Defensively, the Frogs also return six starters that participated in this beat-down and 44 lettermen overall.

Texas Christian Survives Iowa State

Both teams come into this rivalry game on a bye, so there is no edge on rest. The Horned Frogs come in off a 17-14 nail-biter when they hosted Iowa State as an 11-point favorite in Fort Worth. The Frogs of War had lost two games before this against teams presently ranked in the top-ten in Texas and Ohio State. In both these losses, the Frogs had opportunities to win the game but failed thanks to silly mistakes and poor penalties. Coach Gary Patterson provides an edge to the Frogs in this contest by virtue of his experience. Coach Patterson is the architect of TCU’s ascension to prominence. He is the man that built this program from the ground up leading them from the Mountain West to two BCS bowl berths. In turn, this allowed TCU to join the Big 12 and become a Power Five team where he almost had the Frogs on the verge of qualifying for the College Football Playoff, a few years ago. This kind of coaching acumen alone gives TCU a tremendous edge alone.

Texas Tech Swatted Away in Morgantown

Two weeks ago, the Red Raiders faced off with the West Virginia Mountaineers. T-Tech entered as a touchdown underdog in what was poised to be a shootout. The Red Raiders came up on the losing end falling 42-34 against the now No. 6 Mountaineers. West Virginia had been placed on upset alert in the build-up because the Red Raiders had defeated the Oklahoma State Cowboys in Stillwater the week prior. However, Texas Tech’s porous defense had no answer for star quarterback Will Grier.

Texas Tech’s High-Powered Offense Against The Fierce TCU Defense

The Frogs are known for their defensive acumen. Many have heralded this bunch routinely as the best defensive team in the otherwise offense-oriented Big 12. This year, the Frogs of War have put up some exquisite numbers. The Horned Frogs allow just 178 passing yards per game (23rd overall nationally) and a 12th ranked total defense (303.6 yards per game). TCU only gives up 20.8 points per game. This could be the best defense that Tech has faced all year and that does not spell well for the team credited with owning the most prolific offense in the country in terms of total yardage and is only second overall in passing yards per game (407.6 yards per game). However, these numbers were earned against teams with a lack of defense, including the likes of Houston, Oklahoma State, and Mississippi. There is an old saying here that applies: offense wins games but defense wins championships. The Frogs embody this notion.

Take Texas Christian -8.5

In addition to the potential trouble that could await the Red Raiders with their bread and butter being gobble up by the Horned Frogs, TCU is just outright a better football team. We spoke on how the match-up does not sit well with T-Tech’s offense against a stout defense. Texas Tech is a passing specialist but as mentioned the Frogs are 23rd in the country against the pass. This is a team that also wreaked havoc on opposing quarterbacks, producing 13 sacks and 21 passes defended. This is a step up in oppositional quality for Tech and their offense has not faced a test like this yet.

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In addition to this, the Horned Frogs have weapons all over their offense to exploit this notoriously weak Texas Tech defense. The skilled personnel of the Horned Frogs are scary. Quarterback Shawn Robinson is a dual-threat in every sense of the word and he has some toys to play with as well. On the outside, speedsters Jalen Reagor and KaVontae Turpin who are both playmakers as wide-receivers and return men. Then of course the physical and nimble Darius Anderson as their bell-cow rusher. Very simply, there is too much talent for Texas Tech to digest given the fact their defense gets hosed on routine basis. Tech surrenders a 91st ranked 31 points per game and are among the worst in the country against the pass, giving up 301.2 yards per game through the air. All of these factors set up TCU to win big here.

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