LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — Texas Tech at Wyoming, Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET (CBS)
Line: Texas Tech by 14, according to FanDuel Sportsbook
Series record: Wyoming 3-2
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
Even when Super Bowl-winning quarterback Patrick Mahomes II was running the show for Texas Tech, the Red Raiders didn’t have this kind of lofty expectations entering the season. They’re knocking on the door of being ranked in the AP poll and were picked to finish fourth in the Big 12 standings. That’s the Red Raiders’ highest preseason prediction since the conference went to a division-less format in 2011. After a trip Laramie, Wyoming, located at 7,220 feet above sea level, Texas Tech plays No. 15 Oregon. The Cowboys are predicted to finish sixth in the Mountain West.
The Cowboys’ defense is led by linebacker Easton Gibbs, the conference’s preseason defensive player of the year. Gibbs and the Cowboys will try to contain veteran Texas Tech quarterback Tyler Shough, who’s 8-1 in games he’s started over the last two seasons. Shough earned MVP honors at the Texas Bowl by throwing for 242 yards and a score. He also rushed for 111 yards and scored twice on the ground in a win over Ole Miss.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Texas Tech: RB Tahj Brooks, who takes over sole duties in the backfield with the departure of SaRodorick Thompson. Brooks has rushed for 1,514 yards and 18 TDs over the last three seasons.
Wyoming: Nose tackle Cole Godbout has 21 1/2 tackles for loss in his career and needs one more to move into the top 10 in school history. The team record is 39 by Eddie Yarbrough (2012-15).
FACTS & FIGURES The Red Raiders are making just their second trip to Laramie. The Cowboys beat Texas Tech 22-17 in 1991. … Texas Tech has a 48-11-2 mark against current teams in the Mountain West. Of those matchups, 45 have come against New Mexico in a series the Red Raiders lead 37-6-2. … The Red Raiders closed out last season with a four-game winning streak. The last time they ended a season withfour straight wins was 1995 — their final season in the Southwest Conference. … The Cowboys are coming off a season in which they earned a bowl bid for the fifth time in seven seasons. They lost in the Arizona Bowl to Ohio, 30-27 in overtime. … Wyoming is 7-2 in home openers under coach Craig Bohl.
AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-football-poll