Ranking of the 2022 football calendar presented by Energy Renovation Center

With just 57 days into the 2022 football season, we decided to dig deeper into each game and rank them from easiest to hardest.

In one of the most anticipated seasons in recent memory, Joey McGuire will make his head coaching debut at Texas Tech against Murray State on September 3. Texas Tech is coming off its first winning season since 2015 and a beating of Mississippi State in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl.

Here we are…

12) September 3 vs. Murray State

A fairly obvious choice here, Murray State is certainly the easiest opponent on next year’s schedule. This game shouldn’t be close from the start and I expect Texas Tech to come out in front of an excited crowd at Jones AT&T to start the McGuire era in week one.

FCS Murray State had a winning season in 2021 with a 6-5 record but were demolished by 35 against Cincinnati, their only FBS opponent of the year. Granted, Cincinnati would continue to make the College Football Playoffs, but regardless, I expect the Red Raiders to win big.

11) Nov. 12 vs. Kansas

The Jayhawks enter 2022 off an abysmal 2-10 (1-8) record. Texas Tech crushed Kansas at Lawrence 41-14 last season, and while they seem to have an improved roster this season, I’m pretty comfortable thinking it’s a Red Raider win.

It’s a good thing Texas Tech isn’t Texas because if the Red Raiders were wearing burnt orange, this game would be ranked as the toughest game of the year.

Texas Tech picks up a conference win in a game that’s never close.

10) Oct. 22 vs. West Virginia

Texas Tech beat West Virginia 23-20 last season on a game-winning field goal from Jonathan Garibay.

The Mountaineers landed Georgia transfer quarterback JT Daniels and new offensive coordinator Graham Harrell in the offseason, but I still expect them to be in the middle to bottom half of the Big League standings. 12.

The Red Raiders have won the last three clashes and I think the streak continues, especially as the game is in Lubbock.

9) November 5 @ TCU

It’s a strange time for TCU. Former head coach Garry Patterson is employed in Texas as a special assistant to head coach Steve Sarkisian and former SMU head coach Sonny Dykes traveled to Fort Worth to coach the Horned Frogs .

The last time Texas Tech beat TCU was when QB Jett Duffey scored on a 38-yard run to win the game. Red Raiders fans always do well in Fort Worth, which is part of why it’s ranked the third easiest of the twelve.

I don’t know if I’m convinced that TCU will be good in 2022, although they can certainly prove me wrong. A ton of starts with a freshman head coach typically is not a very good combination.

8) October 1 @ State of Iowa

Everyone remembers Jonathan Garibay’s 62-yard field goal to beat Iowa State last year.

I really didn’t know where to put this one. The Red Raiders have struggled in recent games at Ames, but could last year’s dramatic win be the start of future success against the Cyclones? Eighth is a fair ranking for this game.

Iowa State lost both RB superstar Breece Hall and QB Brock Purdy in the offseason.

7) November 19 @ Kansas State

Kansas State had a great year in 2021 and finished in the top half of the Big 12 standings.

In case you were wondering, I won’t go into the atrocities we saw unfold in Lubbock last year against the Wildcats.

Kansas State landed Nebraska transfer Adrian Martinez after Skylar Thompson left. They’ll probably still be a bowl team this year, but I’m not entirely convinced they’ll be anything more. Maybe I could have rated this game higher, but I think seventh is a solid spot.

6) September 10 vs. Houston

Texas Tech beat Houston last year in dramatic and coming-from-back fashion, 38-21. The Cougars had a fantastic season in 2021 and expect to pick up where they left off.

I scored this game at six mainly because of the recent success of the Red Raider (4-1 in the last 5 games). Houston will be the first real test for Tech in Week 2, but the game is at home and I think that gives McGuire and co. a big leg up.

5) September 24 vs. Texas

The 70-35 defeat by the Red Raiders in Austin last season was embarrassing to say the least.

2021 has been a disappointing season for the Longhorns, however. Texas added some top talent this offseason, including Ohio State transfer Quinn Ewers, who Red Raiders fans are no doubt familiar with.

With the exception of last year, these games are generally exciting. This year’s game will be close and I think regardless of the team’s defense, they will ultimately win the game. Is Texas back? That remains to be seen. I think the rowdy Lubbock crowd gives Texas Tech the edge and the win in a big game.

4) Nov. 26 vs. Oklahoma

Texas Tech took a beating from Norman last year. Which Oklahoma team should we expect this year? There have been so many changes and uncertainties with Lincoln Riley for USC, but I expect Oklahoma to be in contention for a conference championship once again.

I think fourth place is a respectable spot, mainly because the game is in Lubbock. We know this OU team will be good, but not SO good yet.

The go-around has been tough for the Red Raiders against the Sooners in recent memory (0-10 in the last 10 meetings). Could Texas Tech break the losing streak this year?

3) October 29 vs. Baylor

After an abysmal 2020 season, Baylor bounced back in spectacular fashion, earning a Big 12 championship and a Sugar Bowl win. The Bears were picked first in the 2022 preseason football poll, but the race for the single spot appears to be relatively wide open this year.

They have lost a few key players, including Gerry Bohanon, but expect this year’s squad to be good again.

This one is a home game in Lubbock that bodes well for the Red Raiders, but Baylor was a force last year and probably has a good chance of repeating itself as Big 12 champions. Three is a good place to this game since head coach Joey McGuire welcomes his old team at the end of October.

2) September 17 @ NC State

NC State has been a really good team for a few years now. A 9-3 record in 2021 catapulted the Wolfpack into an offseason full of expectation and excitement. Most see this team as an ACC championship contender, and rightly so.

I actually think Texas Tech has a chance to upset the road, but it’s definitely going to be one of the toughest games of the year.

1) October 8 @ Oklahoma State

QB Spencer Sanders returns for another year at Oklahoma State after winning First-team All-Big 12 honors, and the Cowboys are looking to build on a near-conference championship season in 2021.

This year’s Cowboys team is good enough to make another run at the Big 12 title and Texas Tech will face them on the road. The Red Raiders have won just one win at Stillwater in the past 10 years…

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