Texas-Texas Tech, By the Numbers

SportMonkAnalyst INovember 3, 2008

In the most exciting college football game so far this season, Texas Tech shocked the top-ranked Longhorns. But the victory is no longer the big news.

The numbers are.

To those people who don't think the Big 12 is one of the most powerful conferences this year, simply examine Texas' numbers over the last four games: against then-No. 1 Oklahoma (now BCS No. 6), then-No. 11 Missouri (now BCS No. 14), then-No. 6 Oklahoma State (now BCS No. 9) and finally Saturday's matchup against then-No. 7 Texas Tech (now BCS No. 2).

If these numbers don't accurately show how tremendously impressive Tech's victory over the Longhorns was, there will be no convincing you.



Over the previous three games, Texas had averaged 159 rushing yards per game and 4.5 yards per carry. This average, I must remind you, was against three top-11 teams.

Over the first eight games, Texas averaged 183 rushing yards per game and 4.5 yards per carry.

Against Texas Tech, the Longhorns only managed 80 rushing yards and 2.9 yards per carry.


Over the previous three games, Texas' defense allowed right at 400 yards of total offense per game and 31.3 points per game. This includes the offense that put up 45, 58 and 62 in the three weeks since their meeting (Oklahoma); another offense that put up 58 the week after losing to Texas (Missouri); and the offense that put up 56, 28 (against then-No. 3 Missouri), 34 and 59 in the games surrounding their matchup with Texas (Oklahoma State). Texas snagged three interceptions and one fumble recovery against the previous three opponents.

Against Texas Tech, the Red Raiders put up 579 yards of total offense and scored 39 points. The Red Raiders only turned the ball over once on a fumble.

3rd down efficiency

Over the previous three games, Texas was 27-39 on third down, converting almost 70 percent of the time.

Against Texas Tech, Texas was 4-12, converting only 33 percent of third downs.


Texas' defense had 29 sacks on the season, an average of 3.6 per game.

Against Texas Tech, the Longhorns managed to sack Harrell only once. Tech sacked McCoy four times and caused him to fumble eight yards behind the line of scrimmage, but Texas recovered for a 5-yard loss.

Points per game

Over the previous three games, Texas averaged 43 points per game and 45.6 points per game over the whole season.

Against Texas Tech, the Longhorns only managed 33 points after a scoreless first quarter for UT, the first time this season Texas didn't score in the first 15 minutes, and no touchdowns in the first half, the first time this season.

Colt McCoy

Over the previous three games, the former, nearly unanimous, Heisman favorite put up almost unprecedented numbers. McCoy was 95 of 112, completing nearly 85 percent of his passes. He averaged 335 passing yards per game and threw five touchdowns against only one interception in those previous three games. McCoy also averaged 31.7 rushing yards per game over that stretch.

Against Texas Tech, McCoy only completed 59 percent of his passes (20-34) and had only 294 yards passing, 16 yards rushing and two touchdowns against one interception that was returned for a Tech score.


The numbers don't lie. The previous three games for Texas were not powder-puff matchups like Washington State, Arizona and Washington (like overrated USC's schedule)—they were against elite teams with elite offenses in an elite conference.

And yes, it was an impressive display by Tech to beat Texas. But if you don't realize the impact the game had, based on these numbers, you don't fully realize how incredible Texas Tech really played.

If you're wondering how Tech jumped from No. 7 to No. 2, I just told you how.