3:30 PM ET, October 13, 2007
Jones AT&T Stadium, Lubbock, TX
LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) -- Graham Harrell bounced up from a rough hit ready to lead Texas Tech to a big win. Texas A&M couldn't do the same after a rough week.
Harrell threw for 425 yards and three touchdowns and ran for another score Saturday in Tech's 35-7 win over the Aggies, who were trying to rally around coach Dennis Franchione after the school admonished him and said it was embarrassed over secretive, for-pay newsletters he was sending to boosters.
|Spreading His Wings|
A game-by-game look at Texas Tech receiver Michael Crabtree, who owns the NCAA Division I record for most TDs by a freshman:
The Red Raiders (6-1, 2-1 Big 12) led 14-7 and were driving late in the first half when Aggies defensive lineman Von Miller flattened Harrell a couple of seconds after the quarterback threw the ball away. Harrell called it a "cheap shot" and said he was "shocked" no flag was thrown.
Referee Tom Walker's microphone remained on after announcing the incompletion. He immediately turned to Harrell and asked, "You all right?"
Two plays later, Harrell continued to talk to the refs about the lack of a flag as he approached the line of scrimmage.
Tech went on to score to go up 21-7 just before halftime, and Harrell, who was 30-of-37 passing with no interceptions, finished the game.
The Aggies (5-2, 2-1) didn't finish, getting shut out after scoring on their first possession. They had chances to keep pace with Tech in the first half but kept stalling. When the drives ended, kicker Matt Szymanski struggled, missing first-half field goals of 41 and 33 yards.
"When you don't get points when you get opportunities, it hurts," Franchione said. "When you move the ball, you've got to get points, especially when you play this team, and we didn't."
Michael Crabtree, Harrell's new favorite target, didn't have a touchdown for the first time in his career. The redshirt freshman, who has a nation-leading 17 TD catches, had at least two in each of his first six games.
But he still contributed, displaying his speed and agility on two slants across the middle, one for 54 yards in the second quarter and a 47-yarder in the fourth quarter with Tech already up 28-7. He had eight catches for 170 yards, just off his per-game average of 179.
"We win, we get the 'W,' and that's all I'm looking for," Crabtree said. "We'll get it next time."
Tech's prolific offense started slowly, failing to score in the first quarter. The last time the Red Raiders didn't score until the second quarter was in their record-setting, 31-point comeback win (44-41) against Minnesota in last year's Insight Bowl.
Tech, which usually throws far more than it runs, ran on just eight plays fewer than its 37 pass attempts.
"I'm a little disturbed that it's balanced," Tech coach Mike Leach said jokingly. "We'll have to throw more next time. Actually, I thought the balance was pretty good cause we got a lot of people's hands on the ball."
A&M's ground game chewed up the clock on the Aggies' first two drives. On the first possession, A&M ran on all 10 plays of a 73-yard drive for a 7-0 lead. Jorvorskie Lane, who earlier this week guaranteed an Aggies win, got his 11th touchdown on a 1-yard run.
"It was a motivational thing for my team," Lane said. "We win together and lose together."
A&M had another good chance early in the third quarter. Cornerback Danny Gorrer had a clear path to the end zone when he stepped in front of a Harrell pass to Danny Amendola. But Gorrer juggled the ball, and Amendola pulled it in for a first down at the Tech 30.
Team Stat Comparison
|3rd Down Conversions||5-13||7-11|
|4th Down Conversions||0-1||0-0|
|TD||06:57||Jorvorskie Lane 1 Yd Run (Matt Szymanski Kick) |
Drive: 10 plays, 73 yds, 5:01
|TD||12:48||Eric Morris 12 Yd Pass From Graham Harrell (Alex Trlica Kick) |
Drive: 9 plays, 76 yds, 2:48
|TD||08:48||Edward Britton 28 Yd Pass From Graham Harrell (Alex Trlica Kick) |
Drive: 6 plays, 59 yds, 2:17
|TD||00:25||Shannon Woods 1 Yd Run (Alex Trlica Kick) |
Drive: 6 plays, 80 yds, :56
|TD||12:29||Graham Harrell 1 Yd Run (Alex Trlica Kick) |
Drive: 12 plays, 83 yds, 5:26
|TD||08:29||Danny Amendola 8 Yd Pass From Graham Harrell (Alex Trlica Kick) |
Drive: 5 plays, 72 yds, 1:05