Getting to know Texas Tech football
Back in the day, Kliff Kingsbury was setting passing records as Texas Tech’s quarterback. Now the second-year head coach runs the Red Raiders.
Kingsbury is just one of two college football coaches who can say he finished in the top 10 in Heisman Trophy voting and played in the NFL — the other is South Carolina’s Steve Spurrier.
At 35, Kingsbury is the youngest head coach in the five power conferences.
Texas Tech is 10-9 in the still-young Kingsbury coaching era, and like Kansas, the Red Raiders (2-4 overall, 0-3 Big 12) have had their struggles this season.
Kansas (2-4, 0-3), though, hasn’t won a road game in 29 tries, and will try to snap that skid at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Jones AT&T Stadium, in Lubbock, Texas.
While KU, Texas Tech and Iowa State all sit at the bottom of the Big 12 standings with no conference wins, the Red Raiders are 14-1 all-time against Kansas and haven’t lost to the Jayhawks since 2001.
Tech averages 30.3 points and 486.2 total offensive yards a game, compared to KU’s 15.8 points and 331.8 yards.
With those numbers in mind, here our five Red Raiders the Jayhawks better keep their eyes on.
No. 7 — Davis Webb, sophomore QB
When you’re talking Texas Tech, you have to start with the quarterback.
Davis Webb averages 325.2 passing yards a game this fall. He has completed 62 percent of his throws for 1,951 yards, with 19 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.
The second-year starter ranks in the top 10 of Tech’s career records in passing TDs (No. 8, with 39) and completions (No. 10, with 394). He’ll also crack the top 10 in career yards against KU — probably before the end of the first quarter. Webb has thrown for 4,669 yards in his time at Texas Tech, which puts him 19 shy of Ron Reeves at No. 10.
Through the first 16 games of his career, Webb has thrown at least one TD pass in each outing — which is a Tech record.
He hit Devin Lauderdale for a 76-yard TD pass in the first quarter last week against West Virginia.
Webb capped last season with 403 passing yards and four touchdowns in Texas Tech’s Holiday Bowl win over Arizona State.
No. 11 — Jakeem Grant, junior WR
Even when he trips up, he can haul in a catch.
Webb’s favorite target this season, Grant has led Texas Tech in receiving for four games in a row. At Oklahoma State a few weeks back, he caught 12 passes for 100 yards.
On the year, Grant has a team-leading 44 receptions for 557 yards and a touchdown. The undersized 5-foot-6 receiver has caught 142 passes in his career for 1,640 yards.
Grant also leads the Big 12 in all-purpose yards this year, with 163.8 a game, and he has 1,044 kickoff return yards in his career (25.5 yards per return).
No. 4 — Brad Marquez, senior WR
The senior captain leads Texas Tech with six touchdowns this fall. With a season-long of 70 yards, Marquez has caught 35 passes for 447 yards.
His 12.8 yards per catch just edge Grant’s 12.7.
Marquez opened the season with a 184-yard performance against Central Arkansas, and the next week against UTEP he caught three TD passes.
In 35 of his 37 career games, he has caught at least one pass.
If the game is close late, expect Webb to look his direction. Marquez has two game-winning receptions this season and three in his career.
No. 21 — DeAndre Washington, junior RB
Sure, Texas Tech is known for slinging the pigskin around the field, but the Red Raiders’ go-to running back ranks second in the Big 12 with 5.1 yards per carry, behind only Oklahoma’s Samaje Perine (5.2).
Washington got to that clip, in part, through a pair of 100-yard rushing games this season. Last week against West Virginia, the Red Raiders handed him the ball 29 times for 132 yards.
On 89 carries this season, the junior has gone for 458 yards and a touchdown. The Red Raiders occasionally incorporate Washington into the passing game, too. He has 15 receptions for 89 yards, with a season-long of 14 yards.
No. 10 — Pete Robertson, junior LB
The 6-foot-3, 236-pounder leads the Red Raiders with five sacks this season. With 45 total tackles, he is just one behind defensive back Keenon Ward’s team-leading 46.
Robertson also has been credited with a pass-breakup, a quarterback hurry and a forced fumble through six games.
He had a sack against both Oklahoma State and West Virginia, and set a personal career mark with two QB takedowns against Kansas State.
The linebacker will be coming after KU quarterback Michael Cummings. The question is: how many times will Robertson get to him?
Last week, he made eight tackles and forced a fumble of WVU QB Clint Trickett.