Texas Tech Red Raiders 2010-2011 Season Preview

2009 Total Offense Rank (yards per game): 4
2009 Total Defense Rank (yards per game): 49

The Texas Tech Red Raiders have a new head coach after the departure of Mike Leach. Leach had tremendous success in Lubbock, something his replacement Tommy Tuberville will hope to duplicate. Tuberville has the potential to continue the winning ways though, having amassed a record of 110-60 including an undefeated season at Auburn.

Texas Tech returns most of the key players from their high powered offense. Senior running back Baron Batch rushed for 884 yards and 14 touchdowns last season, and should get even more work in Tuberville’s offense.

The receiving corps returns four players that caught at least 45 passes and 570 yards in 2009. Alex Torres led the group with 67 catches but Detron Lewis had the most yards (844). All of these receivers (along with Batch) create tremendous mismatches and openings for the quarterback to find.

The starting quarterback spot is still up in the air. Taylor Potts and Steven Sheffield both saw a lot of time last year, and both have been hurt during the spring. Potts’ stronger arm will likely win out and give him the majority of the playing time after throwing for 3,440 yards last season. Sheffield should see significant playing time as well though given his mobility and versatility.

Texas Tech Raiders Cheerleader

The Red Raiders will be switching to a 3-4 defense under new coordinator James Willis. Only Colby Whitlock returns as a starting defensive lineman, as Brandon Sharpe and Daniel Howard leave after combining for 23 sacks.

In an effort to generate some much needed pass rush, leading tackler Brian Duncan will move from inside to outside linebacker. Bront Bird will take over the command of the inside. The team is inexperienced at corner, with a sophomore and redshirt freshman starting. They should be helped out by a strong safety duo in Franklin Mitchem and Cody Davis, the team’s second leading tackler from a year ago.

Texas Tech’s offense should once again move the ball and score a lot of points. The defense’s transition to a more attacking style may be beneficial but could also allow more big plays. Tuberville is a talented coach and has a chance for a 10 win season in Lubbock.

Texas Tech’s odds to win the Big 12: + 1500

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