It was a game that Quasimodo would call ugly and the Elephant Man would say “had a nice personality.”
One of these teams had to win, according to NCAA rules and regulations, and this time, it was Texas Tech. The Red Raiders won 17-14. It was one of the least Big 12 games in conference history, a repellent slog that shouldn’t encourage fans of either team.
Some Big 12 games are slugfests. This was a slug fest, in that both teams looked lethargic and you wouldn’t want either one in your backyard. (Sorry, I had a lot of lines ready for this game, and I’m just getting rid of all of them.)
The stats belie how bad both offenses were — TCU had 411 yards, and Texas Tech had 363. But neither team looked competent, and even when the Horned Frogs mounted drives into Red Raider territory, turnovers stopped progress. From a bobbled pass to an ill-timed fumble, TCU gave the ball back to Texas Tech at precisely the most inopportune times.
KaVontae Turpin was a bright spot, catching six passes for 120 yards and a score. Jalen Reagor also hauled in an nice touchdown catch. Outside of that, there wasn’t much to write home about for the TCU offense.
Shawn Robinson struggled at quarterback, throwing passes off his back foot and into coverage. The interception in the end zone in the first quarter wasn’t his fault — Artavious Lynn should’ve caught that pass for a touchdown. But he looked uncomfortable in the pocket all night. Whether that’s a result of his left shoulder injury, we don’t know. Texas Tech was able to limit his running ability and force him to make bad throws, and the Frogs couldn’t add anything in the running game. TCU finished with 121 rushing yards, and even that number is flattering.
The TCU defense was solid, and does not deserve much gruff. Two lapses on the back end led to both Texas Tech touchdowns, one on a Jett Duffey throw to Ja’Deion High and another on a 38-yard Duffey run. But this is Texas Tech, one of the best teams in the nation at creating big plays — TCU’s defense can’t be faulted for this loss.
The game ended, as it should’ve, on a busted play — TCU, down three, faced fourth and one from near midfield with a minute left. Robinson ran left, then back right, then threw the ball straight up at a 90 degree angle and Texas Tech recovered it.
TCU is now 1-2 in the Big 12 and 3-3 on the season. The Frogs host Oklahoma next Saturday at 11 a.m.