Is there a Curse of Tech XX or are we just paranoid?
Curse of Tech XX
Tech XX was found dead, apparently from a heat stroke, on August 1, 2012.
Since that fateful day, Louisiana Tech has had some of the program's greatest success. From 2012 thru 2016, the Bulldogs won 9 games in four of the five seasons. Under Skip Holtz, Louisiana Tech is undefeated in bowl games.
However, there have been some tough losses that are hard to swallow. There was Texas A&M in 2012, the famous "Johnny Football" game. Then in 2013, we had the game at Kansas where the Bulldogs had the game wrapped up before turnovers got in the way.
In 2015, there was a triple overtime loss to Kansas State. In 2016, a 21-20 loss to Arkansas was added to the list. Last week, Tech lost in the final 55 seconds to South Carolina, 17-16.
Throw in two Conference USA championship games; losses to Marshall in 2014 and Western Kentucky in 2016, and the Bulldogs appear to be snakebit.
Louisiana Tech has had great success, but every time there seems to be a chance to take things to the next level - we see a weird turnover or a fluke play cost the game.
Going back to 2012, Tech seemed to have overcome the loss to Texas A&M as they ran off several wins in a row. A 48-41 home loss in overtime to Utah State ended Tech's hopes of playing in a BCS Bowl - the Orange Bowl actually had officials at the game.
Can We Get A Linebacker Please?
Of Tech's top five linebackers this season, only Brandon Durman was recruited as a linebacker. Reggie Cleveland, Collin Scott, Russell Farris, and Dae'Von Washington have all been considered safeties at some point in their careers.
Maybe an eye should be cast toward the State of Alabama, where former Bulldogs Adrien Cole, Solomon Randle, Nick Thomason, and Tony Johnson all played high school football.
Let's Get Positive
When was the last time we saw so many freshmen and sophomores playing big roles for Louisiana Tech? Freshmen Amik Robertson, Kody Russey, and Adrian Hardy join sophomores Courtney Wallace, Ka'Derrion Mason, L'Jarius Sneed, Rhashid Bonnette, Ethan Reed, Collin Scott, Ephraim Kitchen, Aaron Roberson, J'Mar Smith, and Alfred Smith as young guys that have made big contributions.
Bulldogs Getting Defensive
In three of their four games, the Bulldogs have given up less than 25 points. Defensive Coordinator Blake Baker's squad has seen a big improvement this season and the numbers are going to start looking very good over the next few weeks.
So far, Louisiana Tech is 65th in passing yards allowed, Tied for 27th in 4th down defense,and 26th in red zone defense.
Tech's next two opponents rank fairly low in Total Offense. South Alabama is 109 and UAB is 78. UAB hasn't faced the top defenses in the country, going up against Ball State, Alabama A&M, Coastal Carolina, and North Texas.
After holding Western Kentucky to 22 points and South Carolina to 17, look for the Bulldog defense to really start clamping down.