Skip to main content

Red Raiders Week 6 vs. Oklahoma State Cowboys: Defensive Players to Watch

The Red Raiders face an offense that was one yard away from a Big 12 Championship title last season and might be better in 2022.
  • Author:
  • Publish date:

Last season, defensive coordinator Jim Knowles had the Oklahoma State Cowboys recognized as a powerhouse of a unit nationally.

Knowles' defense ranked first in sacks per game with 4.07 and second with 8.1 tackles for loss. They also ranked in the top 10 in a number of other categories.

Knowles is now serving the same capacity at Ohio State, and his replacement is Derek Mason. Mason will be tasked to continue the momentum that Knowles initiated last season.

The Cowboys lost seven starters from Knowles' unit last year, so Mason definitely has his work cut out for him. 

The defensive line should once again be the strength of this unit, especially on the outside, as Brock Martin, Tyler Lacy, and Collin Oliver all return.

Make sure to follow along at as we preview every matchup for Texas Tech during the 2022 season. Now, onto the Oklahoma State offensive players Red Raider nation should be keeping an eye on.

DE Collin Oliver

Oliver earned unanimous Big 12 Defensive Freshman of the Year by league coaches and is a star in the making. He was also named to several Freshman All-America teams, finishing No. 7 in the FBS with 11.5 sacks. Although he made just one official start he had 29 total tackles, 15.5 tackles for loss, five quarterback hurries, and a forced fumble.

LB Xavier Benson

The transfer from Tyler (Texas) Junior College already has Big 12 experience, playing for three seasons with Texas Tech in 2019 where he was a regular starter. He'll most likely start, replacing Malcolm Rodriguez and Devin harper in the middle of the defense.

S Jason Taylor II

Taylor is the lone returning starter from last season in the secondary and will be expected to lead the unit in 2022. Taylor make 48 tackles last year, including 37 solo, forced one fumble and defended four passes. He'll look to improve those numbers by virtue of an increased role entering his senior season in Stillwater.

Follow Timm Hamm on Twitter at @IndyCarTim

Follow the Texas Tech Red Raiders Daily Blitz Podcast HERE

Follow Red Raider Review on Facebook and Twitter!

Want More Red Raiders News? Check Out The Latest In Texas Tech News Here