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Red Raiders Week 14 vs. Oklahoma: Offensive Players to Watch

The Red Raiders conclude Big 12 play with a matchup against the Oklahoma Sooners at Jones AT&T Stadium in Week 14.

The Texas Tech Red Raiders will face the Oklahoma Sooners in the Big 12 regular-season finale for both teams on Nov. 26 in Lubbock, Texas.

It will be the culmination of a 14-week season and there could be a Big 12 Conference Championship Game berth on the line, depending upon how the season goes for both teams.

Oklahoma is coming off an 11-2 season and a 7-2 Big 12 slate. But, the Sooners failed to make the Big 12 Championship Game for the first since it was reinstated, and the offseason featured a massive coaching transition.

Lincoln Riley left the Sooners to take over at USC, and the Sooners hired Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables to take over. Venables was a former defensive coordinator at OU under Bob Stoops, who was the interim head coach for the Sooners’ Alamo Bowl win over Oregon.

Texas Tech is coming off a 7-6 season that had its own tumult. The Red Raiders fired Matt Wells in October of last year and hired Baylor assistant coach Joey McGuire — a former Texas high school football coach — to take over the program. Former Red Raiders quarterback Sonny Cubmie handed the program on an interim basis and led them to the Liberty Bowl, where they faced their former coach, Mike Leach, for the first time.

Cumbie is now the head coach at Louisiana Tech. McGuire hired Western Kentucky offensive coordinator Zach Kittley for the same role at TTU, while he lured well-respected defensive mind Tim DeRuyter to run the defense.

With that in mind, here are a few offensive players to watch for the Sooners when they face the Sooners in Week 6.

Be sure to stick with as we preview every aspect of the matchup with the Sooners throughout the week

QB Dillon Gabriel

Gabriel is the would-be successor to Caleb Williams (transferred to USC) and Spencer Rattler (transferred to South Carolina), both of which started for OU last season. Gabriel is coming off a 2021 in which he missed most of the season with an injury. 

But, for his career, he’s thrown for more than 8,000 yards and 70 touchdowns. Plus, he has experience with offensive coordinator Jeff Lebby, as they worked together at UCF. 

Gabriel could continue the recent tradition at OU of transfer quarterbacks experiencing high levels of success (think Baker Mayfield, Kyler Murray, and Jalen Hurts).

WR Marvin Mims

Mims is the one ‘known’ quantity returning from last season’s offense. He caught 32 passes for 705 yards and five touchdowns last season, which was third-best for the Sooners. 

With the transfers of Jadon Haselwood (Arkansas) and Mario Williams (USC), it’s up to Mims to become Gabriel’s favorite target. He has the talent. 

He’s just never quite had this wide-open of an opportunity to prove himself.

RB Eric Gray

The running back situation is kind of a mess with the loss of Kennedy Brooks, who rushed for 1,253 yards and 13 touchdowns last season. With Brooks out the door, Gray is OU’s leading returning rusher with 412 yards and four touchdowns. 

Gray was expected to play a bigger role last season, but Brooks’ play took care of that. Now, Gray gets a chance to play the kind of role he was hoping for last season. He won’t be alone. 

He’ll have to hold off a young, exciting back in Jovantae Barnes, who impressed the Sooners during spring workouts.

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