Oct. 25, vs. West Virginia, 5-2
Nov. 1, at No. 14 Kansas State, 5-1
Nov. 15, vs. Texas, 2-4
Nov. 22, at No. 4 Baylor, 6-1
Dec. 6, at No. 11 Oklahoma, 5-2
“The one thing that has been a concern of mine all year is playing on the road with players that aren’t experienced and aren’t as mature. When you’re on the road with them, if you don’t watch it what can happen is what happened today. It starts to snowball and go down hill, and it’s hard to stop it at that point,” said Gundy.
“We were just exposed today in some certain areas, and it was hard for us to play catch up.”
The Cowboys, now 5-2, struggled offensively, gave up big plays to TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin (who finished with a career-high 410 passing yards), and turned the ball over in a game when they couldn’t afford to do so.
Daxx Garman was just 10-of-25 passing for 132 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions, including TCU cornerback Kevin White’s diving interception on the OSU quarterback’s second pass of the game to give the Frogs possession at midfield. It took them just two plays to take a 7-0 lead on B.J. Catalon’s 34-yard run.
The Frogs then added a pair of long touchdowns – both on passes from Boykin to Josh Doctson (the first was for 77 yards for a TD and the second just a few minutes later went for 84 yards) – to go up 21-3.
The Cowboys had their chances to make a game of it despite falling behind by 18 points. They drove to the TCU 9-yard line before settling for Ben Grogan’s 27-yard field goal.
The defense forced a three-and-out, allowing the offense to put together an 11-play, 59-yard drive which stalled after having a first-and-10 at the Frogs 17. Grogan’s 28-yard field goal made it 21-9 midway through the second quarter.
But that’s as close as OSU would get.
Catalon, who became the first opponent to rush for more than 100 yards against the Cowboys since 2012 (he finished with 102 yards on 10 carries), scored on a 35-yard run late in the half, and then the Frogs put together a 14-play, 79-ayrd drive to open the second half to go up 35-9.
“Offensively we started out pretty good and then they hit the big play (Catalon’s first TD run), and then we had a three-and-out and they hit us with another big play (the Boykin-to-Doctson 77-yard scoring play), and then offensively from that point forward we really stumbled and didn’t play well and put the the defense on the field too much,” Gundy said.
“Where we put ourselves back was when it was 21-6 and we had first down (inside the 20-yard line), and we ended up getting another field goal. If you score there it’s 21-13 and there’s seven minutes left in the half. It just takes one stop and you can go in at the half as a one score game. That would have helped us a lot. We just stumbled around down there and we couldn’t move the ball.”
The Cowboys struggled to generate any offense against the Horned Frogs, finishing with a dismal 258 total yards (including only 51 yards and just one first down in the second half).
OSU entered the game having scored 20 or more points in 58 consecutive games – dating back to the start of the 2010 season – but that streak was broken when the Cowboys had to kick field goals on the three drives into the red zone in the first half.
The loss to TCU is the fourth-worst loss in Gundy’s 10 years as head coach:
39 points (62-23), at Texas A&M (Oct. 15, 2005)
36 points (56-20), at Texas Tech (Nov. 8, 2008)
34 points (34-0), vs. Colorado (Oct. 1, 2005)
33 points (42-9), at TCU (Oct. 18, 2014)
32 points (49-17), at Oklahoma (Nov. 24, 2007)
I told the team we’ve got to get back, evaluate this game from a coaching standpoint and a playing standpoint, make the corrections and then we have to move forward,” Gundy said. “We have another tough game one week from today. From this point on they’re going to be that way every week.”