Notebook: Texas Tech coordinators review TCU loss, final stretch and more
Offensive coordinator David Yost
- Yost began the session by addressing the positives he saw out of Texas Tech’s 33-31 loss to TCU this past Saturday. He said he likes the way team fought, specifically following the first two drives of the game up until the final two drives. At one point the Red Raiders clawed back in front of the Horned Frogs late but ultimately a fumble by McLane Mannix ended their efforts.
“We got more explosives this week percentage wise than we’ve had really since the Oklahoma State game. That was good,” Yost said. “We talk about it all the time – we defer when we start the game and there’s a reason behind that. Our goal is we can try to steal a possession at the end of the quarter and them start the third quarter and get another one ... We were able to get that score right before halftime and I know we left more time on the clock than we expected to after we hit on the big play to RJ (Turner) but then we were able to start the second half and basically it’s a 14-3 swing then all of a sudden it gets us back into the football game ... To take a lead back – have the lead going into the fourth quarter and getting the lead back in the fourth quarter one time – we gotta find a way to do that one more time and then everything’s a lot different.”
- Yost said he doesn’t know why they have the slow starts on offense because the week before in an 11 a.m. game against West Virginia the Red Raiders dominated from the start. This week was different. He added TCU did nothing different than they had anticipated either. He broke down some fundamentals like more zip on the ball from Jett Duffey, receivers finishing the catch and catching the ball in stride for an explosive play rather than smaller gains.
“We talk about it all the time – you gotta start practice fast, you gotta start everything that you do ... you gotta anticipate what they’re going to do ... They came out and played pretty much exactly what we expected them to do on defense, which normally that helps you settle down and get into a rhythm a little bit quicker ... it was good that we did get settled down and was able to kinda get back and make it a game, give ourselves a chance when it’s all said and done.”
- Mannix has been the main guy at the slot receiver position with help from Dalton Rigdon, according to Yost. He said they continue to rotate at the position based on injuries. Xavier White was making flashes but his season was cut short because of that injury reason. Yost said KeSean Carter worked at that position all of spring but Xavier Martin has been consistent in that spot throughout his season. Both Martin and Carter can fill in there if needed.
- The Kansas State Wildcats on average allow around 58 totals to their opponent. Yost said it’s also a stout defense when it comes to defending the pass. He added that they are emphasizing the importance of every drive to their guys since Kansas State is also leading the Big 12 in time of possession with their ground it out style on offense. The best way to attack that is to put up points and force the Wildcats into a faster approach on offense.
- Yost said QB Maverick McIvor is getting many reps in practice by splitting time with Jackson Tyner with the second team. However, it is Duffey’s ball and they’ll aim at keeping him healthy while putting him in a position to win. As of right now, Duffey’s going to start but if any injury was to happen then they’ll evaluate who can help them win. Alan Bowman still has his fourth game to burn while keeping his redshirt but Yost said right now they will be smart when using that if they need to. It all depends on the situation and the ability for him to help the team win.
- Yost said if he somehow could wave a wand and fix one thing on his offense against TCU then it would be punching the ball into the end zone in the red zone every time and establishing a strong running game. Right now, though, Yost is listing SaRodorick Thompson and Ta’Zhawn Henry between 90 to 100 percent healthy. He added if they were able to create space for them then they could have gone for more yards than they finished with.
Defensive coordinator Keith Patterson
- Texas Tech’s problem on defense was stopping TCU on third down. Patterson said the TCU staff executed on maybe three of those conversions when he brought pressure. The main thing was they fought and weathered the storm on defense.
- LB Jordyn Brooks has been dealing with an upper-body injury which forced Patterson and Co. to throw some guys in that weren’t necessarily prepared to play or play at that specific position. He said the game wasn’t a whole lot different than the West Virginia game besides the fact that they didn’t execute at a high level on third down, which ultimately is a big reason behind the close loss. Brooks started the game but Patterson said he missed on tackles for loss and gave up yards, which showed him he wasn’t his usual self. Adam Beck and Riko Jeffers are dual-training at two linebacker positions while Xavier Benson has moved to the boundary. Patterson said he’s working with the scenarios that can happen in-game. For now, they saw the defense struggling with chemistry with all of the moving around. The thing now is adapting and overcoming those struggles.
- Patterson said Kansas State is like TCU on offense in that they both play very balanced. Skylar Thompson is very similar to Max Duggan of TCU. Patterson said on film other teams played with tighter coverages and brought pressure against Duggan but gave him credit for being able to create plays against that. He expects the same issues can arise against K-State. The goal against teams like that are to make them one dimensional.
- Patterson said it’s the defenses responsibility to stop them opponents on third down when comparing the amount of plays his unit is on the field and time of possession. Last week, TCU was able to rack up 43 minutes and 26 seconds worth of time of possession. Patterson said he doesn’t look at the TOP. They simply play the game as an aggressive defense, which is who they are. They have to complement each other on defense and offense but the defense wasn’t able to get off of the field or create turnovers against the Horned Frogs.
- Patterson said the future looks bright for the Red Raider defense. He said he and Brooks had a discussion about that topic when watching the second half against TCU. At one point, four freshmen were on the field at different levels of the defense. He added guys like Brooks, Broderick Washington and Douglas Coleman have helped the young players out by showing up and working every day. They need to take what they learn from those four close losses and turn things around. Another sign of hope is watching those young guys experience firsthand what they can do on the field, which in turn makes them excited for their own future.
- Adam Beck has been a player that the coaching staff has relied on with the slew of injuries they’re dealing with. Beck has lined up at corner, safety and is now at linebacker. Patterson said he’s proud of Beck for embracing his different roles. He added Beck has to stack that success from the TCU game. One of the good things he saw from Beck was his aggressiveness went up as he moved closer to the line of scrimmage. They’ll expand on that with him over the final two games.