Matt Wells Outcoaches Himself in Fort Worth
The Red Raiders went into Ft. Worth today as 10-point underdogs, and the special teams and offense certainly fit the bill.
New starting QB Henry Colombi and Offensive Coordinator David Yost combined for nine three and outs and were 2-16 on 3rd down. The defense did everything it could to win this game for the Red Raiders, but the special teams unit continually put them in terrible positions.
TCU would start drives on the Texas Tech 33, 32, 39, 14, and 22-yard lines, but would only muster 13 points on those five drives. Certainly an impressive showing with the ineptitude being shown on offense and special teams. Put all that together and you end with a 34-18 TCU victory. It was the Horned Frogs' first home win in more than a calendar year.
The Red Raiders offense got off to a sluggish start to say the least. The Red Raiders started with five consecutive three and outs to start the game. Punter Austin McNamara would hit inconsistent kicks, and the Texas Tech punt coverage was brutal, giving TCU great starting field position.
To the Red Raiders' defensive credit, the TCU offense would do very little with their possessions in the 1st. TCU quarterback Max Duggan's first throw of the game was an interception by Zech McPhearson, and the second drive was a field goal attempt for TCU which they didn't even need a first down to get. The Horned Frogs made it to end the first quarter, 3-0.
TCU's first drive of the 2nd quarter would feature eight straight run plays that would be capped off by a Duggan touchdown run. That drive started at the Red Raiders' 39-yard line.
Texas Tech would respond with their best drive of the first half. They would get their first first down of the game and make all the way to TCU's 7-yard line. The drive would end on an incomplete pass from Colombi on 4th and two.
The Texas Tech defense wouldn't blink and only gave up eight yards in the next two TCU drives, forcing two punts. The Red Raiders would give it back in short order between, but would finish their last drive of the half with Trey Wolff's first field goal of the season.
TCU would open the second half on offense. After a Duggan fumble was erased by a defensive holding call 30 yards away from the action, the Horned Frogs would glide down the field in 12 plays covering 89 yards. If the Red Raiders' offense from the first half showed up out of the gate, the 14 points would be insurmountable.
That was not the case on the first drive. Colombi would complete three straight balls, capitalizing on a 60-yard bomb to freshman Ja'Lynn Polk for a touchdown. The Red Raiders were now down, 17-10.
After TCU punted, the Red Raiders would punt it right back, but allowed Derius Davis to return the ball to the Texas Tech 16-yard line. TCU would do absolutely nothing with the field position and have to kick the field goal that would sneak just inside, giving TCU another 10-point lead with 3:45 left in the 3rd quarter.
The next TCU drive was dead in the water early, but would be extended by a Red Raider penalty after Adam Beck tackled a TCU ball carrier several yards out of bounds. Two plays later, Duggan would take it 48 yards to the house on a read-option run.
Texas Tech would punt the ball back 38 seconds later.
The 4th quarter would get a little wild. Texas Tech would have their punt blocked to open the quarter, giving the Horned Frogs the ball at the Red Raider 22-yard line. TCU would not move the ball at all and miss the field goal. A minute and a half later, Texas Tech wide receiver Erik Ezukanma would walk into the endzone after a 54-yard bomb from Colombi.
After a Myles Price two-point conversion, TCU would get the ball back, leading 27-18. They would hold the ball for nearly seven minutes before not converting a fourth-down conversion. After Texas Tech held, the offense would stack several plays on top of each other driving down the field to the TCU 25-yard line.
On second down, with 2:44 left on the clock, after not kicking a field goal in more than three games before the first half, Matt Wells decided to let Wolff attempt the 37-yarder. It would go wide left.
Max Duggan would cap off TCU's win with an 81-yard touchdown run. He finished the game with 156 yards rushing and 73 yards passing.