*disclaimer – I had my recap typed up entirely before I went to lunch, then came back and my computer crashed, so I’m definitely not going back and doing it again in its entirety.
12-0. Sit back for a minute and let that sink in. Truly, since we’ve won national titles and all, this doesn’t necessarily qualify as our best season ever, but we’ve also never won 12 games and with the coverage in today’s college football, I suppose the argument can be made. As I mentioned in last week’s preview, the team had quite a few records to break this week, so let’s take a quick look at the milestones.
- The Senior Class moves into first place in all time wins with 42, passing last year’s record setting class. Patterson now has three of the top ten winningest senior classes in TCU history. The silver lining in losing such a decorated senior class? There are only 13 of them.
- Andy Dalton tied Sammy Baugh for the career wins record with 29. He can make it 30 with a bowl win or, like I said before, he has at least 12 chances to do it again next year. He also moved into second place on the career TD list with 43, trailing only Max Knake’s 49. He also only trails Knake by 176 yards in career passing yardage.
- The offense beat the records set by last year’s team in points scored and total yards with 488 and 5,613, respectively. I have a feeling next year’s offense could one up the records once again.
- Jerry Hughes is alone in second place on the all time sacks list with 28.5, including 11.5 this season. He trails Bo Schobel by half a sack. I have a feeling this record will fall during the bowl game.
- Finally, the TCU fanbase actually won an award! The all time record for attendance was set with 229,121 total and 38,187 per game. This was definitely helped by the Utah sellout and the pleasant surprise of 41,738 on Saturday despite it being a noon game on a holiday weekend. Pat yourselves on the back and you can all have extra dessert tonight after dinner.
Oh yes, and there was a game played!
- AD had five touchdowns Saturday. Just wanted to make sure everyone knows that.
- Antoine Hicks! Not that he needed a breakout game… but I’ll certainly take one. Five catches, 123 yards, 2 TDs. On the first, he simply blew past the secondary and high stepped his way into the end zone. The second was a bit more of a challenge, but AD stung the ball in between two defenders where only Antoine could get it and he yanked it from the defender for a score. As Texas Hammer kept reiterating to me, yes, ladies and gentlemen, he is only a sophomore.
- Bart Johnson also had a heck of a game for the Frogs, scoring two TDs, both in very acrobatic fashion. The first, Dalton hit him on the sideline and he just beat a defender to the pylon by diving for it. The second, Johnson caught the ball in the middle of the field, juked a couple of defenders, and took it in for the score. Pretty wild that those were his first two TDs this season.
- The run game didn’t have a huge day, but it didn’t need to. 202 total yards and only one TD, which was by Dalton, but Joseph Turner had several big runs on senior day, finishing with 44 yards on 11 carries. Matthew Tucker led all runners with 63 yards on 11 carries. It’s going to be sad seeing Turner go as he has been such a big part of the offense the past few seasons, but you don’t have a pulse if you aren’t excited to see what it’s going to look like when we unleash Tucker, Ed Wesley, Aundre Dean and Waymon James on the world. Defensive coordinators are going to be fired because of them.
- It was good to see Marcus Jackson get some PT, although it was during garbage time. Wish they’d let him throw the ball a couple of times, but when you’re up by 41 points, I suppose that’s bad sportsmanship. MJ may have been an innocent bystander this season, but just remember what he did for us last season when Dalton went down with an injury. Fortunately we did not need him this season, but he was a great presence on the team and it speaks volumes that he stuck around through it all even though he knew he was not going to be a starter.
- The offense didn’t make it to 500 yards Saturday, but 430 is awfully nice, especially after the way they started. I had to miss the first quarter while driving in from the airport, but the radio broadcast didn’t make it seem like I missed a whole lot.
- The fumbles HAVE to stop. Two fumbles, both lost. I keep saying it will cost us a game, and fortunately it hasn’t, but that doesn’t make it any more acceptable.
- The offensive line allowed one sack, but continued their dominating performance this season. Overall, they have only allowed 10 and are one of the biggest reasons for our record setting offense.
Final Numbers – 430 yards (202 rush, 228 pass), 23 first downs, 6.2 yards per play, 0 INTs, 31:46 TOP, 5/13 third down, ¾ red zone, 1 sack allowed.
- Daryl Washington certainly went out on a high note. 11 tackles, which led the team, and the first pick six of his career. Apparently Tank Carder had been egging him on pre-game about how he needs to get his TD, and he certainly did at a great time. Combine that with Rafael Priest’s pick six on the very next UNM possession, as well as the opening safety, and the defense had themselves a pretty nice day.
- Speaking of that day, the defense only allowed 172 yards total to the Lobos, including 10 net yards on the ground. Donovan Porterie, who has now been in school longer than Jordan Shipley I think, couldn’t get comfortable all day and, despite his reputation as a mobile QB, was only able to gain 16 yards on 7 carries. He was also sacked four times by the defense.
- Jerry Hughes went out on a rather quiet note, but his one tackle was a sack, which is a fitting end to his career at Amon G. It was also a fitting changing of the guard for the defense as some of the younger guys were able to step up and fill the void. Tank Carder had 10 tackles, but FOUR of those went for a loss. The defensive line, anchored by Wayne Daniels and Kelly Griffin, not to mention Clarence Leatch who had a sack, could actually be better than this year despite the loss of Hughes. Not that Hughes can be replaced, but as balanced as the line will be, it’ll be impossible for defenses to shut everyone down. I expect big things.
- TCU came into the game with one of the lower interception totals in the country, but thanks to Porterie’s generosity, they piled up 4 on the day, including the two above mentioned pick sixes. Jason Teague and Tejay Johnson had the others; Hughes and Kelly Griffin also had interceptions bounce off of their fingertips. Much like the defensive line, it’s going to hurt to lose Priest and Nick Sanders on the edges, but there will not be anything resembling a drop off with Teague and Alex Ibiloye.
Final Numbers – 16 first downs allowed, 172 yards (10 rush, 162 pass), 4 INTs, 1 safety, 2.3 yards per play, 28:14 TOP, 3 sacks, 0/1 fourth down, 2/15 third down.
- Anson Kelton continues to decline and I have to think we look at some other options in the off season if they arise. A 38.5 yard average, including a booming 27 yarder, just isn’t going to cut it. In other news, we punted SIX times! That just shows how slow our offense started.
- Ross Evans converted all seven of his PATs, but he missed his one FG on the day, although it was 42 yards and the wind was whipping around. I’ll give him a pass.
- Not much to report from the return game. Ryan Christian had a big 43 yard return when we replaced Curtis Clay with him on a rekick. Greg McCoy also almost made it two in a row with a 55 yard return. Jeremy Kerley only took one punt return for 7 yards and one kick for 10, but he wasn’t given many opportunities as we seemed to be trying out a few new wrinkles on the return team, or more than likely trying to keep Kerley from getting injured. Curtis Clay took two punts, but he muffed one, almost got slaughtered by not calling a fair catch on another, and called a fair catch when he should’ve run it on the last one. Needless to say, he probably isn’t going to win that job anytime soon. Kerley will be back for the bowl game.
Overall – Great day for football and a great crowd. Seriously, when we arrived at the stadium at the end of the first, the parking lot was completely devoid of people and the east side of the stadium was 100% as full as the Utah game. The home side was also quite full, although the upper deck was mostly open. Section X was rowdy as could be to begin the game – lots of parking lot dwellers in the second half – and I even saw a smattering of T shirt fans. We always give UT shit for their legion of t shirt fans, and we always will, but it’s definitely a double standard. Speaking of UT, cheers to the Xers who were absolutely abusing the two lone UT fans in the middle of the section, and even went so far as to try and get one of the cops to toss them out. We don't need that kind of garbage mucking up our home crowd. Bravo, sirs. It’s going to be a very long week waiting for the BCS announcement, but I know that it will be entirely worth it. Sad that there won’t be a game this weekend, but seeing as how almost all of the championship games impact our bowl situation, it will be an exhilarating weekend of football nonetheless. It’s been a great season and the end result should be even greater. Sad that this will be my last regular season recap of this 12-0 team and one of the last times I can write about Jerry Hughes, Daryl Washington, etc as Frogs, but having that last time be for the BCS marbles makes it all worth it. Even though we’ll have a month long break from Frogs football, we’ll still keep the content rolling. Go Frogs!