Good Cop, Bad Cop: Texas Tech edition

Wide receiver Deshaunte Jones catches the ball during the football game at Jack Trice Stadium on Oct. 13.

This weekend, Iowa State will take on Big 12 opponent Texas Tech for their first game in two weeks after a bye week.

The Iowa State Daily’s sports writers will give their takes for the best and worst case scenario for the game on Saturday.

Good Cop

Jack Shover

Across the board, Iowa State has the better pieces on offense and defense to handedly beat Texas Tech this Saturday.

At quarterback, two freshmen will square off with Iowa State’s Brock Purdy and Texas Tech’s Alan Bowman.

This season, Bowman has been great for the Red Raiders, tossing 14 touchdowns to only four interceptions and a 158.2 passer rating.

The problem for the Raiders is Purdy has been fantastic for the Cyclones, having thrown seven touchdowns and two interceptions with a 214.9 passer rating.

In addition, Purdy is dynamic with his legs and ranks second on the team in rushing yards.

In stark contrast, Bowman is an immobile pocket passer like West Virginia’s Will Grier, whom Iowa State held to 100 yards passing, a touchdown and interception, and Iowa State sacked him seven times.

Without the threat of a mobile quarterback, Iowa State will be able to bring exotic and disguised blitzes like what the team did against Grier and West Virginia.

While some players blitz, the rest of the defense will be able to sit back into pass coverage and blanket the Texas Tech receivers.

Even if Bowman isn’t sacked, the pressure will force Bowman to make quick throws short of the first down marker or into tight coverage, which can lead to turnover opportunities for the Iowa State defense.

Against West Virginia, Iowa State’s David Montgomery finally looked like his usual self, which will be trouble for the Texas Tech defense.

Last season, Montgomery led all running backs in forced missed tackles according to Pro Football Focus, but Montgomery hadn’t looked like his usual self until the West Virginia game, where he exploded for 189 rushing yards on 29 carries.

With both Purdy and Montgomery along with Iowa State’s receiving corp, Texas Tech has little chance of stopping the Cyclone’s offense, which looks as dynamic and unpredictable as it has all year long.

Prediction: Iowa State 41, Texas Tech 13

Bad Cop

Spencer Suckow

The win against West Virginia has a lot of Cyclone fans confident, and rightfully so.

West Virginia is a very good team, and Iowa State dominated them in pretty much every facet. If the Cyclones can beat the Mountaineers, by far one of the best teams in the Big 12, surely they can beat just about anyone.

Heck, the team that they’re playing this week, Texas Tech, just lost to West Virginia at home not too long ago, and the Red Raiders have been outscored by the Cyclones by a combined 74 points over the past two years. This shouldn’t be too hard for Iowa State, right?

Well, I regret to inform you that Texas Tech is actually good this year, and ISU is in for a rude awakening if they expect things to go the way they have the past two years.

Led by Alan Bowman, the best true freshman quarterback in the Big 12, the Red Raiders are 5-1 since losing to Ole Miss in week one. Bowman didn’t start that game, but came in as an injury replacement for junior McLane Carter. Since he took the reigns, Texas Tech has been stellar.

In fact, the Red Raiders may be a dark horse to make the Big 12 title game. I know what you may be thinking: how can Texas Tech make it to Dallas with a bad defense?

Well, if you haven’t been paying attention, this isn’t the Texas Tech of two years ago. These Red Raiders are stout defensively, and statistically boast the best unit in the Big 12.

I know Iowa State fans are confident coming off a big win and big performances by guys like Brock Purdy and David Montgomery, as well as the entire defense. Not to mention the game is at Mid-American Energy Field. I don’t blame them for being confident.

But the Red Raiders are good, and with a stout defense and superior freshman quarterback, I see the Red Raiders putting the Cyclones back under .500 on Saturday.

Prediction: Texas Tech 24, Iowa State 17