I've heard a lot of experts and non-experts alike say that Texas Tech might come into this game unprepared.
There are several reasons Texas Tech will be ready to play against Oklahoma State as they were last week against Texas.
1. Graham Harrell's leadership. He is a focused senior and won't let his team slip. Just as he did on the last drive against Texas, his demeanor and preparation will shine through. His teammates believe in him and he will be prepared and have them prepared.
2. Michael Crabtree remembers. He remembers the tough loss last year at Stillwater. He remembers the pass that hit his fingers in the endzone with eleven seconds left. He remembers dropping it. Michael Crabtree will want to erase that memory with another moment of greatness.
Crabtree will also want to serve notice on his field that he is the best receiver playing. Dez Bryant is a great talent. (One that could have come to Tech. Imagine he and Crabtree on the field at the same time...) He will be considered the best receiver in college football next year, after Crabtree leaves for the NFL and is a top ten pick. But this day will be about Michael and his big game.
3. After last years game the Texas Tech defensive coordinator was fired. He was replaced by Ruffin McNeil. Tech's defense improved immediately. More importantly, the players who are back know it was the worst game they played and they want to make amends. They have been thinking about that game for a year. This time they get to show how much better they are. In Lubbock. At night. Believe me, Tech will have plenty of energy and focus.
4. This team stays confident and loose. There were many reports about Tech's preparation going into the Texas game. Many people marvelled at how loose and calm Tech was going into the game. They had great practices and prepared well.
Tech coaches said that this week has been as good or better. They had their best Tuesday game week practice of the year. They know how much is on the line and have embraced it. They aren't scared, they aren't overconfident. They are simply ready.
I believe Texas Tech is going to win this game. It won't be a blowout but I could see them beating the spread by a touchdown or a bit more. Oklahoma State's numbers on the road are way below how they perform at home. The Jones will be a daunting place to play, especially at night.
They played in front of more people at Texas, but Texas fans aren't as loud or rowdy. And as good as Texas is, this year Texas Tech is better. Both teams will score, both teams will be ready, but the home team will be just a bit better and will come out on top. If they don't, it won't be because they overlooked the Cowboys. It will simply be because Oklahoma State played a great game.