Red Raiders tame the Bears 39-14

The Texas Tech football team thoroughly dominated Baylor on Saturday night to move to 3-3 overall on the season and 2-1 in Big 12 play. The 39-14 road win was critical for a number of reasons.

First, It gives the Red Raiders a legitimate shot at reaching bowl eligibility with only three wins needed over the second half of the season to ensure a postseason birth.  Getting to a third straight bowl game would be an important step forward for this program as the rebuilding efforts continue in Lubbock after the disastrous Kliff Kingsbury and Matt Wells eras.

Second, the Red Raiders finally got another road win under Joey McGuire’s guidance.  Entering the game on Saturday, Tech had been just 1-6 in true road games since the start of last season.  To become a legitimate Big 12 contender, that trend must change and the beat down of Baylor was as good of a way to start to reverse those struggles as one could have asked for.

Also, it was important for this program to get back to beating Baylor.  Having lost four of the last five and nine of the last twelve in the series was unacceptable for Tech.

Of course, this win also had to be special for McGuire, who got his start as a college assistant with the Bears.  Though he still holds Baylor head coach Dave Aranda in high regard, the competitor in him had to desperately desire to chance to get the better of his former boss and, more importantly, the university that picked Aranda over McGuire following the departure of former Baylor head coach Matt Rhule for the NFL in 202.

It was a true mismatch at McLane Stadium, a stadium that Tech had never emerged victorious from prior to Saturday night.  Behind two Behren Morton TD passes and a smothering defensive effort, Tech jumped out to a 17-3 halftime lead and was never truly challenged after that.

The Red Raiders were the better team in every phase and it wasn’t even close.  Whether or not that is an indication that Tech is finding its footing or whether that is more of a statement about how bad Baylor is this year can be debated.

Texas Tech fans won’t turn their noses up at this win though.  Taking down the Bears is always satisfying, regardless of whether it is in football, basketball, rodeo, meat judging, or team sheep shearing.

This is a series that’s likely to take on even more importance for the Red Raiders in the new landscape of the Big 12 and it will be important that Tech reestablishes the dominance it once enjoyed over Baylor when it won 15 games in a row in the series during the early 2000s.

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