The defense stepped up in a big way on Saturday, largely in part to a secondary that played one of its best games of the season. Kevin White was a beast, shutting down the other Kevin White, and Chris Hackett was arguably in multiple places at the same time on every play.
Hackett had his team-leading fourth interception of the season, forced a fumble, and almost had another pick as well. Not to mention the defensive line got great pressure on Trickett, and they were key in stopping the run game late.
On the day TCU had five takeaways, and whenever you have five takeaways, you win the game.
B.J. Catalon was really the lone bright spot for an offense that struggled mightily for the majority of the game. He had 20 carries for 105 yards and two touchdowns, bringing his totals on the season to 98 carries, 493 yards and 10 touchdowns. He's nine carries and 76 yards away from eclipsing his carries and yards from a season ago, and he's two touchdowns away from doubling his rushing TDs from a season ago. At 5-foot-9, 190 he's taken a beating over the last few weeks, but he's a tough dude.
Obviously, Jaden Oberkrom gets the biggest of the game balls, while Zach Allen gets an honorable mention for his mega fist pump. Oberkrom has made 50 field goals, good for fourth on TCU's all-time list.
Boykin was really bad. Really, really bad. But he stepped up when needed and dropped a beautiful pass to Kolby Listenbee to give Oberkrom a shot to win the game. I don't expect Boykin to play that poorly again this season. He's at a whole different level as far as his maturity and preparation are concerned, and he'll do the work this week to get straightened out.
Ok, let's talk kick returns for a moment. Cameron Echols-Luper was a disaster on Saturday. He let two kickoffs fall to the ground, one of which was recovered by West Virginia, and he totaled 21 return yards on five attempts (6 yards on 2 punt returns and 15 yards on 3 kick returns), running backwards on one punt late to put TCU inside its own 30. He's been average at best this season and hasn't had more than 28 punt return yards since entering conference play. Is it time to try someone else back there?
Ok. Two seasons ago I wrote this when we found out that TCU would be having a blackout for the Kansas State game. It still stands today, so read it again:
It’s concerning to me that some TCU fans are so insistent on wearing purple because they 1) think a blackout is a stupid idea, or 2) "don’t own anything black," or even 3) they think it’s just a ploy by the school to make money.
To address the first issue, I’m sorry that you think it’s a stupid idea, but it’s what the school is doing so deal with it. I know plenty of people who don’t agree with the concept of a blackout but they’re wearing black. Why? Because they’re supporting their school and their team.
As for not owning something black, I find that hard to believe. A spinoff of this complaint is that that person may not want to buy a black TCU shirt, because they’ll only wear it once. I find it hard to believe that you’ll only wear that shirt once. Oh, what, black isn’t one of our colors?
Have you seen our uniforms over the past several seasons? And it’s not limited to football either.
I think it's safe to say black has been fully incorporated into our school colors at this point.
To those that think this is simply a ploy for TCU to make money, rather than a fundraiser for cancer research, I really think you should reevaluate things. Could TCU donate more than just a percentage of the sales revenue? Sure. Name one other school that does it that way though.
This blackout is about unity, and support for our team, school and those family members and friends closest to us that have either beaten or succumbed to cancer.
They're not asking you to light a religious book on fire, they're asking you to wear a black shirt.
Put the damn shirt on.