Really, Just How Good Is ... Texas Tech?
Posted Oct 7, 2013

The unknown & unheralded unbeatens ... how good is Texas Tech?

How Good Is ... Missouri? | UCLA? | Miami?

By Terry Johnson
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After racing out to a 5-0 start, many people have asked, "just how good is Texas Tech?"

The answer: the Red Raiders are a legitimate Top 15 team at this point of the season.

A closer look at Tech's overall body of work will bear this out.

Make no mistake about it: Kliff Kingsbury's squad has what it takes to win the Big 12 this season. Despite losing precision passer Seth Doege to the NFL, the offense is still one of the most electrifying units in the conference. Under the leadership of true freshman walk-on Baker Mayfield (and reliable backup Davis Webb), the Red Raider O ranks second in the Big 12 in passing offense (407.6 ypg), second in scoring offense (41.8 ppg), and second in third down conversions (50.56%).

Not a bad performance for a unit that was supposed to be rebuilding in 2013.

While the offense gets most of the credit for the team's success, Tech's defense is the reason why it's undefeated. Led by Terrance Bullitt, JJ Gaines and Bruce Jones, the Red Raider back seven ranks 6th nationally in passes defensed, breaking up an average of 7 passes per game. The run defense has been equally impressive, allowing just 2.97 yards per carry in the first 5 games.

As a result of its excellence against both the pass and the run, Texas Tech ranks 8th nationally in scoring defense, surrendering just 13 points per contest.

When you mix in all of the ingredients from the previous four paragraphs together, it's easy to see why the Red Raiders are such a dangerous team. With an explosive, high-octane offense, Tech has more than enough firepower to win a Big 12-style shootout. However, even if the offense falters, the defense will come up with enough stops to keep the game within striking distance.

Very few teams in the country can say that, which is why the Red Raiders belong in the Top 15 at this juncture. While they're not as flashy as some other squads, they're one of the most complete teams in college football right now.

It's tough to argue with those results.

Terry Johnson is a member of the Football Writers Association of America. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and/or Google+.