Texas Tech’s 2020 season starts this week against an FCS opponent with some spunk to them. This week is for ironing out the issues brought up by a shortened offseason and, more importantly, ironing out issues in the COVID-19 prevention protocols.
Here are five things Red Raider fans need to know about Houston Baptist
Prolific passing attack
The Husky offense is led by a star quarterback: Bailey Zappe. As a junior, Zappe lit it up in the Southland Conference, throwing for 3,811 yards and 35 touchdowns in 12 games. Zappe is the school’s career leader in completions, attempts, passing yards and passing touchdowns.
In the first game this season, Zappe threw for 480 yards and three touchdowns against the Mean Green in Denton.
North Texas absolutely obliterated this defense last week when it dropped 57 points on Houston Baptist in the season opener. The Mean Green had two quarterbacks throw for over 100 yards in the Week 1 matchup: Jason Bean passed for 217 yards and three touchdowns and Austin Aune threw for 111 yards and one touchdown.
On the ground the Husky defense was even worse, allowing 360 rushing yards and four rushing touchdowns. Five different North Texas players rushed for at least 40 yards against Houston Baptist.
Neglected rushing offense
In 2019 the Huskies relied on two primary backs to lead their running game: Dreshawn Minnieweather and Ean Beek. The two ran for a combined 1,383 yards and 11 touchdowns last season, accounting for all but two of the Husky rushing scores.
Both returned this season, but Minnieweather did not play in the first game of the season.
Like Texas Tech’s defense, the Houston Baptist defense puts a focus on forcing opponents to commit turnovers.
Last season the Husky defense forced 16 fumbles, recovering 13, and grabbed 11 interceptions. Houston Baptist also commits many turnovers on offense, throwing 16 interceptions and losing eight fumbles last season.
Dangerous red zone offense
One mark of an efficient offense is the ability to score in the red zone. While the average offense can score many a field goal inside the opponent’s 20 yardline, the best offenses score touchdowns more often than not in that danger area.
The Husky offense had 63 possessions in the red zone last season and managed to score on 50 of those possessions. Of those 50 scores, 12 came off field goals and the other 38 were touchdowns. Scoring touchdowns on more than half of red zone possessions is one of the better ways to keep an offense humming at a high level.
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