Texas Tech Betting Odds Preview
The first half of the first season of the Kliff Kingsbury era (as head coach) in Lubbock went splendidly; the Red Raiders won their first seven games. The second half of last season, however, didn't go too well; they lost five games in a row.
And beating the weak sisters of the Big 12 while losing to the big boys doesn't get one too far in the conference standings. Texas Tech is going to score some points, with Kingsbury returning the offense to its pass-happy ways. But the Raiders' defense is going to give some up, too. Ultimately, Tech's level of success will depend upon its performances against the Oklahoma-Baylor-Texas crowd.
Texas Tech started 7-0 last year, beating nobody of any real note, but reaching No. 10 in the rankings. But the schedule got a little tougher, and the Red Raiders lost their next five games, to Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Kansas State, Baylor and Texas. A tough row to hoe, for sure, but one victory over that span would have been nice. But Tech ended the season on a positive note, upsetting Arizona State as 14-point underdogs in the Holiday Bowl to finish at 8-5 SU, although only 6-7 ATS.
The Raiders pulled a tough trick last year, posting a winning record despite a -14 turnover ratio. They also ranked near the bottom in the nation by committing eight penalties per game.
This year Texas Tech returns 13 starters, one more than last season. Nine starters are back on offense, including sophomore QB Davis Webb (20/9 TD/INT as a true freshman last year) and the entire offensive line. But only four starters are back on defense, just two among the back seven.
The Raiders averaged 36 points per game last year, while giving up 31 PPG; both those numbers could go up this season.
Tech opens this season with three winnable games, including a home date with Arkansas, then begins Big 12 play with consecutive road games at Oklahoma State (on a Thursday night) and at Kansas State. The Raiders then host West Virginia and Kansas for two winnable home games, then visit TCU, host Texas, visit Oklahoma and battle Baylor in Arlington.
To have a shot at the Big 12 title Texas Tech will have to at least earn a split on the conference road, and sweep its home games. But with this defense, and that slate of games, that will be hard to do.
Big 12 Championship Odds at Bovada as of August 5
Kansas State 10/1
Oklahoma State 10/1
Texas Tech 20/1
West Virginia 66/1
Iowa State 100/1
The Texas Tech Red Raiders got off to a promising start last season, but finished just 8-5 SU and 6-7 ATS after ending the year on a 2-4 SU and 0-6 ATS skid. With a new head coach and quarterback at the helm, the Red Raiders will try to stay competitive in 2013.
After getting off to a 6-1 SU and ATS start including upset wins over West Virginia and TCU, the Texas Tech Red Raiders were generating some national buzz. But it went sour from there as the Red Raiders finished the regular season 1-4 SU and 0-5 ATS, and then were spurned by head coach Tommy Tuberville, who took the Cincinnati Bearcats job. Fan favorite and offensive mastermind Kliff Kingsbury takes over at head coach this year.
Kingsbury has enjoyed success as the offensive coordinator at Houston and Texas A&M, and his hiring means we should expect to see plenty more of the Red Raiders’ signature offense, which finished second in the nation in passing yards with 355.9 per game last year and 20th in scoring with 37.5 points per game. Quarterback Seth Doege graduated, but sophomore Michael Brewer and true freshman Davis Webb both look like excellent dual-threat options that should be able to run Kingsbury’s high-octane offense.
The big concern is on defense. The team returns eight starters and fared well against the pass last season, but was dead last in the country in turnover ratio and 92nd in points against allowing 31.8 points per game. There is enough talent returning that there won’t necessarily be a huge drop off, but a new defensive coordinator and a new scheme will likely not be able to turn things around overnight in the high-octane Big 12.
Texas Tech looks like most teams in the conference with an explosive passing attack and a vulnerable defense. The Red Raiders will win some shootouts, but breaking in a new quarterback, head coach, and defensive scheme will likely leave the team a tier below the conference’s elite.
Big 12 Conference Odds at 5Dimes as of August 11
Oklahoma State +260
Kansas State +1600
Texas Tech +2500
West Virginia +2500
Iowa State +4500