One of the biggest plays in Texas Tech’s 24-23 comeback victory over in-state Big 12 rival Baylor on Saturday was senior linebacker Colin Schooler‘s monster goal line tackle on quarterback Charlie Brewer. The play not only fired up the Red Raider defense, but preserved precious points which proved pivotal in the end.
“It fired me up. It fired the crowd up. I think it fired the whole team up,” said Texas Tech head coach Matt Wells after the game. “That’s a four-point tackle.”
The situation was Baylor faced third and goal from the four, up 20-12 with 1:45 left in the third quarter. Brewer received the snap in the gun, faked a handoff to a man in motion then immediately rolled hard right, before cutting up field obviously sniffing the end zone and indeed, it looked as if he would stroll in for a big touchdown. Brewer cut inside off tight end Drake Dabney’s left side, who was standing on the end zone stripe in the middle of the field when Brewer made his cut. Right about the same time as Brewer decided to zig when he should of zagged, Dabney went flying back three yards from a vicious chuck from Schooler who then stood up Brewer right at the goal line and delivered a lethal tackle, that yes, has gone viral, but also may have been the catalyst for a much needed victory in Raiderland.
Baylor (1-5) lined up to go for it on fourth and goal from the one but was flagged for a false start and was forced to settle for the field goal and a 23-12 lead. The Red Raiders (3-5 overall, 2-5 in the Big 12) would go on to outscore the Bears 12-0 in the fourth quarter winning on a last-second field goal of their own. Schooler, a grad transfer from Arizona who joined the team in the summer, tied with safety Eric Monroe for the team-high in tackles with 11, including two stops for loss and a sack.
“If you go back and look at the play from kind of the end zone view, the quarterback really had kind of a two-way go between me and the goal line so I don’t think the tight end saw me, but I was able to shove him one way to force the quarterback to go another way,” said Schooler after the game. “By doing that I knew I had leverage on which way to go and when you’re inches from the goal line you need every advantage you can get. By recognizing I can use this body to force him another way I was able to get a for sure angle on the quarterback.”