Saturday’s brutal loss against the West Virginia Mountaineers was more than just a game for TCU fans; it truly was a test of spirit, resilience, and loyalty. We’ll now see who hopped on the bandwagon during last season’s ride, and we’ll see who’s been on since the wagon left the Mountain West Conference.
The Horned Frogs’ enviable 10-game Big 12 regular-season winning streak was halted in a 24-21 finish that left fans at Amon G. Carter Stadium on Saturday with a mix of disbelief and hope. We interviewed some of them during, and after, the game.
“I’ve been following the Frogs for over a decade, and this one stung more than I remember losses stinging... I think it was the expectations,” admitted Jenna Martinez, a TCU alumna. “Those two blocked field goals in the final minutes? Heart-wrenching. But that’s football for you. One moment you’re on top, the next, you’re picking yourself up.”
Despite the slow start, the atmosphere at the Carter was electric from the start; until it wasn’t in the second half. Fans cheered as Chandler Morris, who threw for 212 yards, threw an impressive 59-yard touchdown pass to JP Richardson. The Frogs were up 21-14 at halftime. But as the game progressed, the mood shifted.
TCU student, Alex Ramirez, said, “Seeing the momentum shift, especially in the student section like that, was tough. I don’t understand why in a close game like that, half the student section clears out at halftime. Maybe we would’ve scored if the second half crowd wasn’t so ‘mid’.”
Mike Thompson, a TCU alumnus, reflected on the game’s turning points. “When the Frogs came out looking flat, looking conservative on offense after coming back from halftime, I had a feeling we were in for a long second half.”
That we did. The second half was a rollercoaster. Chandler Morris looked nervous, play calling wasn’t helping and the offensive line was a wreck (i.e., two blocked field goals).
Season ticket holder, Lisa Daniels, remarked, “Morris needs to be better. He needs to individually step up in moments like that.”
Despite the loss, many fans remain hopeful and supportive of the team.
Derrick Wallace, supposedly known for his legendary tailgates, a drunk friend of his told me, remarked, “Losses are part of the journey. We’ve got a strong team, and Coach Dykes knows his stuff. We’ll regroup and come back fighting.”
Wallace thinks the Frogs will make a bowl game, but that clearing the Vegas win total of 7.5 will be a difficulty.
The game also sparked comparisons to TCU’s performance last year, where they went undefeated in the regular season, only to lose the Big 12 championship game to Kansas State. We then all remember the run in the College Football Playoff, beating Michigan in the semifinals but falling to Georgia in the championship.
“Last year was a dream,” said Mia Rodriguez, a TCU student. “This season is different, but it’s far from over. We’ve got more games, more chances. One loss doesn’t define us.”
As the Frogs prepare to face Iowa State next Saturday, the TCU community is rallying behind their team. The upcoming games will be crucial, and fans are gearing up to show their unwavering support.
In the words of Martinez, “We’re Frogs through and through. A setback is just a setup for a comeback. We’ll be there, cheering louder than ever... at least the real fans.”