The Horned Frogs were finally able to string together a solid all-round performance, as they were able to defeat the West Virginia Mountaineers by a final margin of 40-10.
Here’s a breakdown of TCU’s performance on Thursday night.
The star of the game was TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin. At times, the Heisman contender was untackle-able. He was so illusive that he got a high five from West Virginia head coach Dana Holgorsen after juking out several Mountaineer defenders.
The senior finished the game with 388 yards passing, three touchdowns and a completion rate of 68 percent. He also led the Frogs with 84 rushing yards and a touchdown.
While Boykin was great, the offense missed out on a lot of opportunities to make the final score even more lopsided. They were forced to punt four times and had to settle for field goals twice when they were inside they opposing 10 yard line.
There was also a penalty that erased a TCU touchdown in the second quarter when offensive lineman Jamelle Naff was called for a facemask that brought back a 61 yard touchdown catch by Josh Doctson.
But even without the long touchdown reception, Doctson was still able to post some impressive numbers. The senior wide receiver had 11 catches for 183 yards and two touchdowns, which broke former Texas Tech wide receiver Michael Crabtree’s record of six straight games with more than 100 yards receiving and two touchdowns.
As a whole, the offense racked up 616 yards on 88 plays from scrimmage.
On the negative side, left tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai left the game in the first half. After watching the instant replay, it looked like he rolled his knee, but Patterson did not seem very concerned about the injury in his post-game presser.
After a few inconsistent outings on the road, the Horned Frog defense was finally able to string together dominating performance at home.
The Frogs held the Mountaineers to 327 yards of total offense, the lowest total since they’ve amounted since 2013.
It became obvious in the first quarter that WVU was trying to take advantage of TCU’s young secondary. Their starting quarterback, Skyler Howard took several deep shots, but his wide receivers dropped them all. There were four instances where WVU receivers dropped passes that would have either gone for 50-plus yards or a touchdown.
But if you take away those drops, the young TCU secondary played perhaps its most complete game of the year. At corner, true freshman Julius Lewis played a lot of snaps until he gave up the Mountaineers lone touchdown to Shelton Gibson on a post route over the middle of the end zone. Lewis was standing in for Cory O’Meally, who missed much of this week’s practice sessions due to a death in the family, Gary Patterson said.
The linebackers also had a solid showing after a couple of poor showing on the road. Redshirt freshman Ty Summers came in to replace Montrel Wilson, who had to leave the game with an injury, which Patterson said he should be able to recover from quickly. Summers made a few really good tackles, including a couple on big third downs.
Travin Howard had a decent showing as well. In the fourth quarter he was able to some how reel in a interception with one hand while keeping his balance on the sideline.
The defensive line was perhaps the most impressive unit on the field for the Frogs today. The defensive front was able to consistently provide pressure on Howard and limit the West Virginia’s run game. Howard finished the game with only 160 yards passing, one touchdown and one interception. The Horned Frogs longest play given up was Shelton Gibson’s 32 yard touchdown catch in the second quarter. TCU did not allow a single run that went for more than 14 yards.
Near the end of regulation, TCU safety Derrick Kindred was took a hard hit from Daikiel Shorts when he skied up to make a play on the ball. Kindred left the game and did not return, but Patterson said he thinks Kindred will be okay.