Well...I believe in the SEC that would have been considered the game of the decade. In the Big 10, that would have been considered par for the course for a Wisconsin vs Iowa game. Sadly, this isn’t the SEC or the B1G, so that game was like lighting matches and tossing them into a hot pale of garbäge. That being said, it was one hell of a trash fire. All that really matters though is that 10 years from now, College football reference is going to show the 2018 TCU football team as finishing 7-6 and with a winning record. A WIN-NING RECORD! There were times that I didn’t know if this team had it in them, especially after we lost our top 2 QB’s on the depth chart...but just a testament to how well Gary Patterson prepares his team, and this team went on a little run down the stretch, winning 4 of the last 5 games on the schedule.
The season is over, and of course that game was probably not the exciting offensive performance that we would have like to end the season with, but hey...we won, and I can stop losing sleep over our 3rd string QB running out of a clean pocket for the 18th time in a row. Like MC Hammer on the beat, let’s break this one down:
- The end - because that’s when this game finally ended. After a 8pm CT kickoff, I was ready for bed at the half time mark, but, alas, as a loyal Frog fan, I proceeded to stay awake for the 3 hour and 45 minute run time for this one.
- Sewo Olonilua - Number 33 was in his bag in this one. Setting a TCU bowl game record after rushing for 194 yards on 32 carries, averaging 6.1 yards per carry. The Frogs would probably not have been able to tire out the Golden Bear defense late in the game without Sewo’s bullying of the Cal linebackers and dismissal of the Cal secondary players that tried to take him down.
- THE MULE - YES THAT IS RIGHT, THE QB THAT THREW FOR 27 TOTAL YARDS, INCLUDING 4 PICKS, IS GOING UNDER THE GOOD CATEGORY. Did he average less than 1 yard a completion? Yes (and we’ll get there). But the guy beat Baylor on no prep with the ones, beat Ok State to get TCU to a bowl game, and then beat Cal to give TCU a winning record on the season. I mean c’mon, the man should go down in the college folk legend hall of fame - second ballot at worst. Thanks for your 5 years GM, we appreciate all that you’ve done. Thanks for choosing TCU!
- The Defense - I mean, had Muehlstein not gifted Cal prime field position after one of his (many) picks, there was a good chance that we would have shut out the Golden Bears in this one. The Frogs D had 5 turnovers, including the back breaker in OT that we almost took back for the game winner. In fact that play was so exciting, that our very own Associate Athletic Director got so excited that he tripped while running down the field to celebrate...and of course drew a 15 yard penalty. Only at TCU.
Anyways, once again Gary Patterson shows up with his defense ready to compete, and they forced multiple picks from multiple QB’s, and kept Cal from scoring outside of the 1st quarter. 5 sacks on the day and 8 total tackles for loss...kind of makes you wish that TCU played more Pac 12 teams.
- The Cheeze-It Bowl’s logo
No lie, this is really well done. The Arizona flag logo being incorporated near seamlessly, with the cheese-it hole in the middle. Hats off to you graphic design team. Not all heroes wear capes.
*** editor’s note: that graphic designer is TCU alum Kenneth Gragson. There was no way we were losing this game. ***
Song’s late game heroics - Speaking of heroes, shoutout to Song for drilling his second walk off field goal kick on the season. Anyone that has watched any TCU game this year knew that Bunce was going to miss his attempt, especially after the bizarre timeout switcharoo antics. But Song came in, and like cool hand Luke, shot his shot (or kicked his kick) and gave TCU it’s first lead of the night as well as the win.
- Grayson Muehlstein, the Passer - Welp...when you finish with 27 passing yards, with 4 picks, two of which were incredibly comical...I mean uhhhhh. He went down in a real Colonel Mustard fashion, a blaze of glory, and with a great hair flow.
- Jalen Reagor’s touchdown streak end - All good things must eventually come to an end, and while we barely knew you JR’s touchdown streak, 7 consecutive games with a score, but our passing game overall didn’t do much to help extend the streak in this one...but JR did contribute big in giving TCU some nice field position after a kick return on the night where the Frogs could not sustain offensive drives.
- The Aesthetics of this game - This game was bad, but hey at least it became an instant meme (not classic). However, the Frogs won, and like Gary Patterson said in the post game interview once the Frogs won, “It’s fun now.”
Heck ya it is Gary.
Play of the Game:
The Jawaun Johnson Pick that kept Cal from scoring in OT, it made me actually excited during this game, and it gave us some sideline hilarity. Gotta love the Frogs and their ability to always play in weird games, and this was the epitome of that. (Start at 00:59).
As that is the last game of the season, I bid all of you readers Adieu, and Go Frogs!