HawkeyedFrog: Today is the last time I will type "Skye Dawson" and be referring to an active TCU football player. So there's that. You can't put all of the blame for TCU's loss on Skye's most egregious muffed punt though, as the offense went to sleep once again in the second half, but unlike the Texas game this time we didn't have enough points on the board to hold onto the win. The offensive playcalling was poor again, as the most successful plays of the first half (quick passes to the outside, the zone read and runs to the outside with Tucker) were mysteriously abandoned in favor of... I don't know what. Boykin completed less than half of his passes again, solidifying the belief that Casey Pachall will come into spring practice as the starting quarterback. Hopefully Boykin will continue to grow after a season that showed flashes of brilliance mixed in with some boneheaded decisions, but with the talent we have returning in 2013 I'd prefer the quarterback who keeps his boneheaded decisions off the field.
Even the TCU defense, which put on a fantastic performance, was not blameless in the loss, as there were multiple instances where tipped passes ended up in the hands of TCU defenders who were unable to come down with it. The most egregious with was Jason Verrett, who otherwise was the defensive MVP of the game, had a ball hit him right in the numbers- not the kind of pass you'd expect one of the nation's interception leaders to drop. If he makes the catch and makes what would have been an easy return for a touchdown, the game would have been over at halftime as MSU would not have been able to take the time to establish the run.
Still the lion's share of the blame does lie at the feet of punt returner Skye Dawson, who for the fifth game in a row muffed a punt, in this case it was not only a punt that he shouldn't have even tried to field but also set up Michigan State on the TCU 3 after the defense had stoned all of the Spartan's offensive momentum after their first score. The following Spartan series gave MSU their first lead of the game, and with the way the TCU offense had been playing in the second half it was absolutely backbreaking. Next season should be a great one for TCU, but this loss is going to bother me until LSU comes to Dallas next year. Yeah, we start with LSU. We'd better be a whole lot better than tonight.
FungoFrog: We will get into our thoughts more tomorrow in the Monday Morning Manager, but for now this is what I have to say:
Considering all we lost, I can't get that upset about 7 wins. We should have had 9, but I can't get angry.
I place the blame for this loss squarely on the coaching staff, and secondly on the following players: Skye Dawson, The Offensive Line, and Trevone Boykin.
When TCU takes on LSU Aug. 31 of next fall, Casey Pachall truly needs to be under center. If not, I don't think we will have much of a chance to win. I am fine with giving Boykin about 20-30% of the snaps, he should be running the zone read plays. But, Pachall is easily the more dominant passer, he has to be the guy.
Congratulations to Michigan State, the defense TCU saw on the last two possessions was pretty dynamic. Congrats on surviving a game against our defense, although I bet your QBs will wake up a bit sore today. Hope to see you back at the top of the Big 10 next year, maybe we can meet up again in the Rose Bowl in early 2014.
Man... This one hurt. Going to take some time to decompress.