Game Day: Red Raiders Set For Showdown In Austin
The Red Raiders are looking for their fourth road victory of the season.
November 5, 2011
by Britton Drown
This certainly wasn't what Seth Doege and the Red Raiders expected. The junior quarterback stood stunned Saturday night in the moments after their letdown loss to Iowa State at Jones AT&T Stadium--the team's third consecutive loss at home.
It hit the first-year starting quarterback hard. He stood at the podium during the post-game press conference fighting back a wave of raw emotion, but he knew what needed to be said. He also knew exactly what this team needed to do.
"You've just got learn from it," Doege, in clear leadership mode, said.
That's exactly what he and this young Red Raider team is looking to do this weekend when they travel to Austin to face in-state rival Texas at 11 a.m. on Saturday. The team, through a week of productive practices, has pushed the disappointment from last week aside.
"Our mind is on Texas," Doege said one day later at the team's weekly press conference.
The Red Raiders are 3-0 on the road this year, including that defining victory at No. 1 Oklahoma on Oct. 22. Away from Jones AT&T Stadium, Tech is outscoring opponents 145-8.
This road trip in particular seems to embody more excitement than most.
"I think there's going to be four or five games every year no matter where you're at that players are going to be excited about playing," head coach Tommy Tuberville said. "This being one of them."
It's a mindset that the players seem to have adopted easily this week as they prepared to meet their in-state rivals for a nationally-televised showdown in Austin. It's an opportunity to prove that the letdown to Iowa State last weekend does not define exactly who this team is, and they can in fact compete with the top teams in both the Big 12 and the nation.
A win in Austin would give the Red Raiders their sixth of the season, and make them bowl-eligible for the 19th consecutive season, a Big 12 record.
"We're very excited," senior defensive lineman Donald Langley said. "We're excited to get out there and prove ourselves again. Really when we are on the road, it's the mentality that `We are all we have.'"
Texas enters Saturday's game fresh off a 43-0 win over Kansas in which they held the Jayhawks to just 46 yards of total offense on just 36 plays. The Longhorns are 3-1 at home this season and hold a 29-5 series advantage over the Red Raiders in games played at Darrell K. Royal Texas-Memorial Stadium.
On Saturday, the Red Raiders will bring in the nation's eighth-ranked offense led by Doege who is averaging 355.7 yards of total offense per game and ranked second in the Big 12 in average passing yards per-game (347.4).
But this is clearly a rivalry game, and the Red Raiders understand that. It's yet another challenge on the road and another chance to secure bowl-eligibility.
"It all comes down to being ready to go on kickoff, executing and being exited to play." Doege said.