Our season-long nightmare is over.
As news was breaking that Sonny Dykes had indeed been tabbed as the next head coach of TCU Football, the current iteration was getting run up and down in Ames, IA Friday, as Breece Hall and Brock Purdy took what they wanted from the depleted shell of the Horned Frogs.
Hall ran for 242 yards and three touchdowns, the 11th straight one hundred yard rusher the TCU defense has allowed this season. Purdy, in his final home start, threw for 262 yards and two scores as the Cyclones’ offense romped all over a TCU defense which has been no stranger to giving up big plays in 2021.
It looked like it might be a competitive affair early; TCU held the Cyclones to a field goal on their opening drive in bend but don’t break fashion, and bottled up Breece Hall. It didn’t last though, as the Frogs punted twice and turned it over on downs over their next three drives, allowing Iowa State to go up 17-0 before you could blink.
Max Duggan and TCU answered the second end zone trip of the game for Purdy’s Clones with a six play, 75 drive that took just two minutes off the clock. Duggan hit Derius Davis for 16 to start things off, ran for the next 13, and found Blair Conwright for 47 yards and six. The defense held on the following possession, forcing a three and out and holding the offense to -6 yards. But with the half winding down, TCU didn’t fully threaten, and went into the break trailing 17-7.
Much like the Oklahoma game, when a poor end to one half precluded a poor start to the next, as TCU went punt, downs, INT and Iowa State went touchdown, field goal, touchdown to put the game out of reach, capping the streak with an 80 yard Hall run for a score.
Emari Demercado led the Frogs with 64 yards on the ground and Davis went for four catches and 63 yards. Duggan was 15-26 for 216 yards, two scores and an interception.
In what could be both of their final home starts, Purdy and Hall put together the kind of performance that had their team ranked in the preseason top ten though their 7-5 finish was far from August expectations, Iowa State should finish in the top half of the conference and has a stellar recruiting class coming in. If Matt Campbell stays, and he conveyed his intentions of doing so, the Cyclones should be fine in 2022 — despite replacing the most productive QB in their history.
For TCU, well, it feels like a merciful ending. Sure, a bowl game would be fun, but with Jerry Kill rumored to be moving on to NMSU and Sonny Dykes working on building a staff and a recruiting class, letting this banged up football team call it for the season seems the right thing to do. TCU Football has been down bad, and a clean slate might be just what the doctor ordered.
To the many players who played hurt, through pain, and just gave their all on the field week in and week out, thank you. To Gary and Kelsey Patterson, who have loved this program and the city like their own, thank you. To Jerry Kill, who steadied the ship and loved the players and the fans with his whole heart, thank you. To the coaching staff, many of whom have made Fort Worth their home for a decade or more, thank you.
No matter the score, no matter the record, Go Frogs forever.