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It’s already been a tough season for TCU. After starting 4-0 and winning their first Big 12 game, starting quarterback Casey Pachall was arrested for DUI and dismissed from the team. Redshirt freshman Trevone Boykin has stepped in and has done an admirable job. Boykin is not the passer that Pachall was, but he brings more mobility and athleticism to the offense. After a rough week with only a couple of days to prepare against Iowa State, the kid has played pretty well.
Both teams came in tied with only one conference loss and were tied with 3 other teams for 2nd place in the Big 12. They also were both in the top 25 with Tech at #17 and TCU at #23. The loser of this game would almost assuredly be eliminated from conference championship contention. Texas Tech came into the game red hot after knocking off seemingly unbeatable West Virginia the previous week.
This was a game of streaks and history was set for both schools. Until this game neither team had played in a triple overtime game. Texas Tech was sluggish early and TCU jumped out to a 17-7 lead midway through the 2nd quarter. Texas Tech came roaring back to take a 21-20 lead at the half. The TCU defense did a good job in the 3rd quarter against the Red Raiders offense as TCU regained the lead 26-21 early in the 4th quarter. It was at this point that the game became wild and fun. Tech QB Seth Doege got hot again and led the Red Raiders to two touchdowns, one on an 8 yard pass to Alex Torres and the other on a 47 yard run by Kenny Williams. The two scores put the Red Raiders up 36-26 with only 4:06 left. The Horned Frogs struck back quickly with a 60 yard pass from Trevone Boykin to freshman receiver LaDarius Brown. Trailing by 3 with 2:25 left, the Frogs decided to kick to the Red Raiders and try to play defense. The strategy worked, holding Tech to a 3 and out. After the punt, TCU had the ball at their own 19 with 1:20 to play, no time outs and only needed a field goal to tie it. Boykin responded by driving his team 56 yards on 9 plays. Jaden Oberkrom connected on a 42 yard field goal with 0:18 left to tie the game 36-36 and send it to overtime.
TCU got the ball first in overtime and Boykin connected with receiver Josh Boyce from 8 yards out to give TCU the lead at 43-36. Texas Tech answered with a 6 yard pass from Doege to receiver Eric Ward. It looked like Ward pushed off on the fade pattern to the back of the end zone, but no flag was thrown. The Red Raiders got the ball first in the 2nd overtime and struck quickly. One the first play from scrimmage, the Red Raiders lined up in the Wildcat formation with Doege split wide left. They ran a reverse pass with Doege ending up with the ball and he completed a 25 yard strike to Jakeem Grant to give Texas Tech the lead at 50-43. TCU answered right back with a 7 yard pass from Boykin to running back B.J. Catalon to tie the score at 50. TCU got the ball to start the third overtime but could only gain 4 yards. Oberkrom kicked a 38 yard field goal to give TCU the lead at 53-50. Tech got the ball needing a field goal to tie and send the game to a 4th overtime or a touchdown would win it for them. Doege responded by hitting Alex Torres at the back of the end zone to give the Red Raiders the win.
The Horned Frogs have 5 wins, but need one more to become bowl eligible. The road will not be easy, with road games against Oklahoma State, #19 West Virginia and #23 Texas. The Frogs will have home games against #3 Kansas State and #8 Oklahoma.
Texas Tech is now 6-1 and tied with Oklahoma and Oklahoma State for second place in the Big 12. Their remaining games are home games against #23 Texas, Kansas and Baylor. The Red Raiders have road games against #3 Kansas State and Oklahoma State remaining.
Here are my thoughts on the draft eligible players from this game. I will start with the winning team:
Seth Doege–QB–Sr: Seth Doege is a streaky quarterback that is dangerous when he’s feeling it. When he’s on, he is extremely accurate. He does a good job of distributing the ball and he gets the ball out on time. Doege moves well in the pocket and extends plays with his legs. He throws a catchable ball with good touch. At 6’1”, Doege lacks the size the NFL teams like to see, but he wouldn’t be the first 6’1” NFL QB. Doege has a lot of heart and kept leading his team back all afternoon. He willed his team to win by throwing for 7 touchdowns. He completed 30 of 42 for 318 yards and did not throw an interception.
Eric Stephens-RB-Sr: Stephens was bottled up for the most part by the Frogs defense. Most of his yardage came when he was running the Wildcat. He had 7 carries for 22 yards and also caught 2 passes for 9 yards.
SaDale Foster-RB-Jr: Foster was part of a 3 back rotation for the Red Raiders. The TCU defense did a good job stopping the run all day. Foster got most of the attempts in short yardage and he did a good job running between the tackles and kept his feet moving after contact. He showed good field awareness, knowing where the first down sticks were. Foster had 7 carries for 24 yards and 1 catch for 1 yard.
Alex Torres-WR-Sr: Torres was silent for the better part of 3 quarters, but then exploded onto the scene. He had 5 catches for 53 yards and 2 TD and all of it was after the start of the 4th quarter. His catch in the 3rd overtime won the game for the Red Raiders. He has good hands and does a good job extending his arms and catching the ball away from his body. He has very good body control and good footwork. He is a dependable receiver that can go up and get the ball over the defender.
Darrin Moore-WR-Sr: Darrin Moore is a big, physical receiver. He uses his 6’4” body to box out defenders and make the catch. He will fight for the ball when it’s in the air. Moore does a good job coming back to the ball. Moore had 5 catches for 63 yards and had a 33 yard catch. Moore had one touchdown catch and a catch for a 2 point conversion.
Eric Ward-WR-Sr: Eric Ward is a very athletic receiver that runs good routes. He is a physical receiver that has amazing body control. Ward does a good job around the end zone and runs a very good fade pattern. He had 6 catches for 61 yards and 3 touchdowns, one of which was in the first overtime.
Austin Zouzalik-WR-Sr: Austin Zouzalik is an athletic receiver that is able to make the difficult catch. He has good footwork on sideline passes. Zouzalik also plays special teams, recovering an onside kick which seemed to energize his team. He had 5 catches for 55 yards.
Tyson Williams-WR-Sr: Tyson Williams does a good job making the short catches and moving the chains. Williams had 3 catches for 31 yards.
Deveric Gallington-C-Sr: Deveric Gallington is the leader of the Red Raider offensive line and is in his third year as a starter. He is a versatile player that has played both guard and center. Gallington makes all the line calls and protection calls for the offensive line.
Dartwan Bush-DE-Jr: Dartwan Bush is a strong player does a good job against both the run and the pass. He is a strong run defender that can stop the ball carrier in his tracks. Bush also has a good bull rush that he uses to put heat on the quarterback. He had 5 tackles, 1 tackle for loss and 1 sack.
Kerry Hyder-DT-Jr: Kerry Hyder is a disruptive force in the middle of the Red Raider defense. He ties up the middle of the line and demands double teams. Hyder uses his strength to push the pocket making it difficult for the quarterback to step up. He had 5 tackles, 2 ½ tackles for loss and 1 sack.
Dennell Wesley-DT-Jr: Dennell Wesley moves well for a defensive tackle. He is mobile and is able to provide pass rush up the gut. Wesley had 2 tackles and 1 tackle for loss.
Will Smith-OLB-Jr: Will Smith is an active linebacker that is a good open field tackler. He closes quickly on the ball carrier. Smith had 6 tackles.
Eugene Neboh-CB-Sr: Eugene Neboh was having a quiet game until late in the 4th quarter. TCU receiver LaDarius Brown beat him for a 60 yard TD catch after Texas Tech had taken a 10 point lead. Neboh contributed 7 tackles in run defense.
D.J. Johnson-S-Jr: D.J. Johnson is part of a 1-2 punch at safety for the Red Raiders. He was all over the field and did a good job in deep coverage. He closes quickly once the ball is in the air. Johnson had an interception and tipped another ball that led to an interception along with 8 tackles. He was flagged twice, once for holding and also for targeting a receiver.
Cody Davis-S-Jr: Cody Davis is the leader of the Red Raider secondary and is the team’s leading tackler. Davis is active in both run and pass defense. He is a very fundamentally sound player and uses textbook tackling technique. Davis has good concentration and had an interception off of a tipped ball and almost had a second interception in the 3rd overtime. He at times tends to jump the ball, so he may bite on double moves. Davis also had 11 tackles to lead the team.
Matthew Tucker– RB- Jr: Matthew Tucker is the most experienced running back for the Frogs. He is a good inside runner, but he also does a good job when forced to bounce it outside. Tucker finds the soft spots to create positive yardage and gives effort after contact. He is able to lower his shoulder to take on defenders and then spin out of the tackle. Tucker has good hands and can contribute in the passing game. He had 12 carries for 59 yards and a touchdown and caught one pass for 10 yards.
Aundre Dean – RB- Sr: Aundre Dean was a stud running back at Katy High School. Dean spent his freshman year at UCLA before transferring to TCU and sitting out a year. He seems be coming into his own as a senior. Dean has good burst through the hole and had a 37 yard run. He ended the day with 3 carries for 37 yards. Dean should get more carries as the season continues due to a lack of depth at the position.
Josh Boyce-WR-Jr: Josh Boyce has been the team’s leading receiver the last two years. His yardage numbers have slid this year, probably due to the change at quarterback. Boyce and Pachall had very good chemistry, but it may take some time to build the same chemistry with Boykin. He is a good underneath receiver that can slip tackles and get additional yardage and he does a good job on tunnel screens. Boyce also has the speed to take the top off of a defense. He had a touchdown in the 1st overtime and caught 7 passes for 52 yards.
Skye Dawson-WR-Sr: Skye Dawson is also a track star and is one of the fastest players in the country. He is the Mountain West Conference 60 meter champ, running a 6.69. Besides being fast, he is quick and dangerous in the open field. Dawson is also one of the top return specialists in the country. He gets good separation speed and he is hard to cover when he lines up in the slot. Dawson had a 19 yard touchdown catch, returned a punt 22 yards and made a 36 yard catch on the last drive of the 4th quarter to setup the game-tying field goal. He caught 10 balls for 154 yards.
Kenny Cain-LB-Sr: Kenny Cain was a 2nd string linebacker at the start of 2011, but was forced onto the field when Tanner Brock was injured. Cain went on to lead the team with 72 tackles. He flies to the football and runs sideline to sideline to make tackles. He is also effective at blitzing from the inside. Cain had 4 tackles against the Red Raiders.
Jason Verrett-CB-Jr: Jason Verrett fights for the ball when it’s in the air. He uses good technique when playing man coverage. Verrett is also an effective blitzer and did a good job supporting the run and the Red Raider screen passing game. He had 11 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 1 sack and 3 passes defended, one of which was in the 3rd overtime.
by Dwayne Wilton