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Inside the Numbers: Texas vs. Texas Tech

Texas's 34-13 beatdown of Texas Tech was fun, wasn't it?

John Weast

5 - 165: John Harris receptions - receiving yards

The John Harris senior revival tour romped its way through Lubbock on Saturday, with Harris notching a career-best 165 yards on 5 catches. In recent years, it was Mike Davis racking up deep play action bombs against a Tech defense struggling to stop the run game, but this year was Harris sneaking behind the Raider defense and generally disrespecting Tech DBs. The game could have been better if he hadn't lost a pass in the lights on a perfectly thrown wheel route that cost Harris a TD.

The season for Harris is turning into quite the productive one. He currently sits at 15th nationally with 814 receiving yards on the season, and is 7th nationally in yards per reception among players with 40+ receptions (4th among Power 5 conference wide receivers). For Harris, the season allows him to rewrite the narrative of his Texas career. For the Texas coaches, a selling point to potential offensive recruits (and recruits they may have already committed but considering other options).

22 - 116 (5.3)- 2: Malcolm Brown rushes - rushing yards (yards per carry) - rushing TDs

17 - 77 (4.5) - 1: Johnathan Gray rushes - rushing yards (yards per carry) - rushing TDs

In what was likely the last chance for a Texas running back to get 100 yards on the season, the Horns saddled up senior back Malcolm Brown and an offensive line with a significant size advantage on its way to a season best 241 yards on 51 carries. The game was well suited for Brown's abilities, and he delivered, punishing a vulnerable Tech secondary with the offensive line controlling a weak Tech defensive front.

Johnathan Gray overcame some early I-can-bounce-it-outside gaffes to post a strong outing against his father's former school as well, chipping in a smooth 17 yard TD run with a strong jump cut against his momentum. It's cuts like that one that will make you think Gray is fully back from that Achilles injury.

2 - 43: Daje Johnson rushes - rushing yards

Inside the Numbers favorite Daje Johnson made an appearance against Tech, just his second of the season, and showed why his presence has been sorely needed on this team. His touches went for 30 yard and 13 yards, with him easily running past defenders in both situations. He's certainly a wild card as Texas heads into a difficult three game stretch to reach bowl eligibility.

13 - 25, 228 (9.1), 1-0: Tyrone Swoopes completions - attempts, passing yards (yards per attempt), passing TDs-INTs

4 - 27: Tyrone Swoopes rush attempts - yards after sacks

Tyrone put up a solid bounce back performance against the Red Raiders. In the "different year new QB same results" category, the Texas QB completed roughly half of his attempts against Tech at a high yards-per-completion total, which netted out to a strong yards-per-attempt performance. It was a good response after his early fumble return for a TD moment that looked like his struggles against Kansas State would continue.

15 - 1: Steve Edmond tackles - sacks

Steve Edmond continued his strong senior campaign, scoring a team high 15 tackles (10 solo) and the team's only sack. While John Harris's season contrasts his lack of playing time at Texas, Edmond's season contrasts his struggles on the field in his first three years.

Under Charlie Strong, Edmond is having the breakout year that prognosticators hoped for. Edmond's size, long arms, and solid athleticism for a 260 lb. linebacker have been on full display throughout the year, and no play showed more to me about his potential than his near interception against Vincent Testaverde. Filling a passing lane with RB responsibilities, Edmond read Testaverde's eyes and jumped a passing lane last minute, batting the pass in the air and nearly coming down with it. It's a play not possible without the long arms he possesses.

76 - 469 (6.2) - 34 vs. 79 - 381 (4.8) - 13: Texas vs. Texas Tech offensive plays - yards (yards per play) - points

5 - 16 vs. 8 - 20: Texas vs. Texas Tech third down conversions - attempts

The raw offensive numbers don't appear to indicate a 34-13 advantage for Texas, especially considering 6 of Tech's points came gifted by a fumble return for TD. Texas held a decent advantage in yards per play, but posted an even lower third down conversion rate. So where did the extra production come from?

Texas had a scoring attempt (TD, converted FG, or failed FG attempt) on every drive it converted a third down and/or had a play go longer than 25 yards. The only scoring drive that didn't feature one of those characteristics was the TD on a short field following the Patrick Mahomes fumble. The Texas offense capitalized on the opportunities it did give itself, even if they weren't as frequent as you'd hope against a defense of Tech's caliber.