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By The Numbers: Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas

The red-hot Red Raiders offense, led by quarterback Seth Doege, will pose a serious threat to the Minnesota Gophers in Houston.

Texas Tech’s red hot offense will look to gun down a Minnesota side that has limped into the post season, next week in Reliant Stadium, Houston.

Last week BettingSports.com took a first look at the Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas, which takes place on Dec. 28. This week we delve into the numbers and check out how the two sides match up.

Texas Tech: Offense

Texas Tech set out its stall earlier this season. The Red Raiders averaged 50.3 points per game over the first three weeks of the season, as senior quarterback Set Doege flung the ball about the field. Doege would finish the season just 66 yards shy of 4,000.

Doege’s favored recipients were Eric Ward (974 yards) and Darren Moore (948 yards) who combined for 24 touchdowns. As a team the Red Raiders scored 42 passing touchdowns, and averaged 361.9 yards per game through the air, second to only Marshall (365.1 YPG).

With a potent passing offense, the running game was put on the backburner, but Kenny Williams still collected close to 800 yards on the season. The team scored 14 rushing touchdowns.

Texas Tech averaged 37.8 points per game, 16th in the nation.

Leaders: Passing Seth Doege (3,934 yards) Rushing Kenny Williams (779 yards) Receiving Eric Ward (974 yards)

Texas Tech: Defense

As you might expect, Texas Tech’s high-octane offense resulted in its defense conceding yards and points in bunches, as teams played catch-up. The Red Raiders gave up 31.8 points per game (93rd), adopting a philosophy of going out and scoring more than the other side.

Defensive back Cody Davis had a huge year, leading the teams in tackles (91) and interceptions (3). Of those 91 tackles, 82 were solo efforts. The fact that Davis made so many tackles however demonstrates the weakness of Texas Tech’s rush defense, which gave up 171.4 yards per game (75th).

The Red Raiders’ pass defense was more efficient however, limiting teams to 195.8 yards per game (23rd).

Leaders: Tackles Cody Davis (82 solo, 9 assisted, 91 total) Sacks Kerry Hyder/Dartwan Bush (5.0) Interceptions Cody Davis (3)

Minnesota: Offense

Whilst Texas Tech was lighting up scoreboards, Minnesota was struggling to make positive ground for much of the season.

The Golden Gophers opened with four straight wins, averaging just shy of 30 points an outing. That streak was short-lived. Jerry Kill’s side would end the season averaging a paltry 21.3 points per game (101st).

Much of the Gophers’ woes came in the passing game. Three different quarterbacks played significant time. Marqueis Gray opening the season before being injury allowed Max Shortell to take over duties. Poor play saw Shortell replaced in favor of Phillip Nelson. The three quarterbacks combined for a total of 2,052 yards on the season. 17 passing touchdowns were almost offset by 14 interceptions.

The side will be without leading receiver A.J. Barker who quit the school amidst allegations of mistreatment by Kill. That’s one less receiving threat on a team that was lacking in that department for much of the season.

Minnesota’s rush game wasn’t much better. The Gophers ran for 146.1 yards per game (80th) but tallied an anemic 12 rushing touchdowns all year.

Leaders: Passing Max Shortell (853 yards) Rushing Donnell Kirkwood (849 yards) Receiving A.J. Barker (577 yards)

Minnesota: Defense

Fortunately, the Gophers were a little better on the defensive side of the football. The team conceded just 23.9 points per game, good enough for 39th in the country.

Minnesota’s pass defense was actually very good, giving up just 178.5 yards (11th) per game. This made up for a less than solid rush defense which gave up 174.3 yards per game (78th). However, Kill’s side failed to take the ball away, managing only seven interceptions and one fumble recovery all season.

Leaders: Tackles Troy Stoudemire (56 solo, 22 assisted, 78 total) Sacks D.L. Wilihite (8.5) Interceptions 4 Players (2)


Texas Tech’s offense is the major difference here. The Red Raiders pillaged defenses this season, and Minnesota could be next. There is one saving grace for the Golden Gophers though. Minnesota was much better at stopping the pass than the run. The passing game is Texas Tech’s undisputed strength, so the Gophers will need to keep it in check.

Minnesota’s two wins over the last eight games is indicative of a side that really shouldn’t have made the postseason, which could result in one of two things. Either the team will step up to make something of the season or it will bowl over and play like the wounded dog it is.

Oddsmakers believe it will be the latter. The Gophers opened as 12.5-point underdogs. That number has subsequently been bumped up to 13.

Stay tuned to BettingSports.com for more on the Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas, ahead of kickoff on Dec. 28.

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