For my last post of 2014, I thought it would be appropriate to do something on a team I’ve been talking about ever since September – the TCU Horned Frogs, co-champions of the Big 12 and participants in the 2014 Chik-Fil-A Peach Bowl.
The following is my (mostly) unedited thoughts on the matchup between the Horned Frogs and the Rebels of Ole Miss, in realtime, as it happened. It was billed as offense (TCU) vs. defense (Ole Miss). It didn’t end up that way, though.
So, here we go:
9:33 AM (PST): This is going to be an interesting matchup – one of the top offenses in the country in TCU vs. once of the top defenses in Ole Miss. Question is, how well will Ole Miss’ Bo Wallace-led offense do against TCU’s tight-pressing defense?
9:34 AM: 19 seconds into the game, and Wallace has looked for long pass plays twice. They think they can burn the TCU secondary.
9:35 AM: TCU interception! Wow – Hackett came out of nowhere. Sure, it was kind of a bad low throw, but still an impressive pick.
9:35 AM: Frogs are starting out quick, with a short field.
9:36 AM: Listenbee with a trick play on second down. Wow. Aaron Green was wide open for the 33-yard TD. Talk about a statement to open up the game for one of the Big 12 teams left out of the College Football Playoff.
9:37 AM: Welcome to the New Year Six, indeed.
9:39 AM: We’re only one minute into the game, and TCU has a 7-0 lead. Could this be a track meet of a game against one of the best defensive teams in the country? For TCU’s sake, let’s hope so.
9:41 AM: Paul Dawson and Sam Carter are such a good LB tandem. Overlooked in an offensive-minded Big 12.
9:42 AM: Ball almost intercepted on third and long for Ole Miss. Could this be a long day for the offense?
9:46 AM: Doctson converts on a third and long. Ole Miss is no joke on defense, though.
9:48 AM: TCU knows how to use its screen plays – Green converts on a 2nd and 14 play, finding holes in the defense.
9:53 AM: Thank you, ESPN, for that 500th reminder that Baylor beat TCU 61-58 this year. We totally needed that. #sarcasm
9:53 AM: Two pass plays by TCU on 3rd and 4th and 1 – one to the end zone on an incompletion. Thank goodness the fourth down play was converted. I mean, it’s one yard, though – no need to be THAT aggressive.
9:55 AM: Aaron Green is so elusive. Converted on the third down play avoiding defenders.
9:56 AM: 15-yard TD run for Green. It’s 14-0, and Green has done most everything on offense thus far.
9:57 AM: Kinda hoping Green comes back for his senior season, but if he has a monster game here, I wouldn’t be surprised if he threw his name in the hat for the NFL.
10:01 AM: First completion by Bo Wallace on offense goes for eight on a tough RAC. Now it looks like an offensive lineman went down on second down by an inadvertent tackle by Dawson.
10:02 AM: Don’t underestimate this TCU defense – Ole Miss is tackled behind the line on an end-around run.
10:04 AM: There’s that Ole Miss defensive front – they got to Trevone Boykin for the first time for a big sack on second down.
10:05 AM: Almost a disaster for Boykin on third down. At least they got the punt off on fourth in the end zone.
10:06 AM: Wow – Bo Wallace didn’t even see the defender on that pass. That’s his second interception in the first quarter.
10:07 AM: Wow. TCU tried to get too cute with a double reverse. Fumble recovery by Ole Miss with great field position. Not the greatest sequence of plays for either offense.
10:10 AM: This Ole Miss offense is looking down the barrel and not looking good. Kind of reminds me of the 49ers offense this year. Wah-wah-wah-waaah.
10:12 AM: Wow. Not only does Ole Miss chunk the field goal attempt, they add a 15-yard personal foul penalty on top of that. Guys, it’s only the first quarter. I know you’re frustrated, but c’mon – don’t lose your cool NOW.
10:13 AM: Smart QB run by Boykin on second down.
10:14 AM: Ouch. Not smart pass by Boykin on third down. Interception by Mississippi’s Keith Lewis at midfield. Two turnovers each by both teams, and this game is looking pretty ugly on the outset.
10:16 AM: Whew. Sack by TCU’s defensive front on Wallace ends the first quarter. Kinda sums up the whole of the game so far, huh?
10:21 AM: Wow, that was a helluva pitch fake by Boykin on a keeper up the middle for a first down. That’s a highlight reel-type play.
10:22 AM: Another impressive run by Aaron Green. If he comes back next year, he could gun for a Heisman campaign – he’s got the tools for one, after all.
10:23 AM: TCU certainly disguises their play fakes well. Couldn’t follow who had the ball on that first-down conversion play.
10:27 AM: Sonny Cumbie and Doug Meacham have performed miracles for this Horned Frogs offense. Makes me wonder if the 49ers should look at one of them for an OC job.
10:28 AM: Boom. Boykin to Doctson for the third score of the game. 21-0 Horned Frogs, and this could turn into a runaway for TCU.
10:32 AM: Ole Miss’ offense still can’t get going. TCU’s defense is partly responsible for that, getting to Bo Wallace on multiple occasions behind the line of scrimmage, sure. But, man, this doesn’t look like the same Rebels team that started the season 7-0 and No. 1 in the country.
10:37 AM: Whoa, Boykin. Way to get called on a cut block foul.
10:39 AM: Another first down by TCU on a great throw by Boykin. Way to make up for the cut block mistake a couple minutes ago.
10:41 AM: Huh. Boykin caught his own deflected pass on third down. Would’ve been something if he ran that up for a first down. Now it’s just a punt to Ole Miss.
10:44 AM: Paul Dawson is a BEAST. He first showed it against Oklahoma and never looked back.
10:45 AM: I love my Horned Frogs, but, man. Stay Classy, Davion Pierson.
10:46 AM: Now, I know TCU has a three-touchdown cushion right now, but it’s still no excuse to play sloppily with penalties.
10:48 AM: Trevone Boykin. Just another impressive QB run by the signal-caller.
10:49 AM: Credit Cody Prewitt for that interception near the end zone. Those kinds of plays shows me why Ole Miss’ defense is so impressive.
10:50 AM: Land shark? Sorry, I don’t speak Rebel… Can someone help me out?
10:51 AM: Nearly a safety on first down.
10:51 AM: Wow! Wallace tries to throw the ball away on another near-safety play … right into the hands of the TCU defense. Should’ve taken the safety. Whoops.
10:55 AM: Ole Miss starts again deep in their own territory, and it’s definitely looking like a long day for the Rebels.
10:57 AM: That was a nice play to get Ole Miss to midfield, but it’s late in the first half. Not sure what they can do right now to score – they’ve been kind of stuck there most of the game so far.
10:59 AM: Another sack by the TCU defense, and an Ole Miss player is down.
11:00 AM: Oh, man. It doesn’t look good for the Ole Miss player – definitely a serious injury. When he’s down that long and there’s a big huddle around him, it’s never pretty.
11:03 AM: That’s Laremy Tunsil – a big part of the Ole Miss O-Line. That’s a shame to see. Hopefully he’ll be alright and it’s nothing career-ending. Being carted off isn’t a good sign, though. You hate to see that, no matter which team you root for.
11:05 AM: Looks like Ole Miss is setting themselves up for their first score of the game. They sure could use anything at this point.
11:06 AM: Well … Bo Wallace gets sacked to end the first half. Like I said earlier – great encapsulation of the Rebels offense against the Horned Frogs defense thus far.
11:09 AM: Watching this performance by the Horned Frogs is almost the ultimate in bittersweet – after all, they’re dominating a top-10 team so far, and you can’t NOT enjoy that. It just shows how good they’ve been this season, and how prepared they were for this game. At the same time, it leaves a bitter taste in the mouths of any TCU fan who believed they deserved a spot in the CFP.
11:12 AM: Wow, 226 total yards of offense for TCU. That’s vs. 59 total offensive yards for Ole Miss. Total domination so far, but the Horned Frogs can’t take their foot off the gas. They only need to look at Baylor for evidence of that.
11:30 AM: Just an aside, but Tim Tebow has certainly been impressive in his play-by-play commentary with Joe Tessitore.
11:32 AM: Well, that’s certainly a great way for TCU to start the second half – long run back for great field position. 65 yards, all told.
11:33 AM: Wow – fractured fibula for Tunsil. No lie – that is certainly a shame.
11:34 AM: Oh my gosh – that looked like another Ole Miss interception … except it fell in the hands of Colby Listenbee in the end zone. Wow. He just took it away from the defender – impressive.
11:36 AM: Call stands after the review – it’s another touchdown for the Horned Frogs. 35-0 early in the second half, and I’m just going to enjoy every moment of this.
11:41 AM: This Ole Miss offense looks pretty deflated. And now Wallace has fumbled the ball to TCU. With plays like that, no wonder the Ole Miss offense looks pretty deflated.
11:43 AM: One play. Boykin to Doctson. Boom. 42-0. TCU’s making this look EASY.
11:43 AM: Poor Ole Miss fans. One shot of TCU fans on one side going crazy, and Ole Miss fans on the other side silent and still – I genuinely don’t feel good for them. Then again, I AM a TCU guy, so I don’t feel TOO bad for them.
11:48 AM: The game is far from over. Ole Miss, despite everything, can at least make this a game. There’s still 28 minutes left in the game, after all.
11:49 AM: But after that 3-and-out, I’d probably giving Ole Miss fans false hope right now.
11:53 AM: Well, there’s a 3-and-out by TCU, though. I wonder if they’ve shut it down so early in the game.
11:54 AM: Then again, with special teams pinning Ole Miss back to their own 5-yard line, I can see why they might. Doesn’t mean it’s still not a good idea, though.
11:56 AM: This TCU defense has really made a statement. I mean, they’re putting the clamps down on Ole Miss with authority – might show how difficult the Big 12 actually is, offense-wise.
12:00 PM: Looks like the Rebels have something going here, offensively. I don’t know who this new QB is, but he looks pretty good out there so far.
12:02 PM: Deepest the Rebels have been all game, I believe. Can they score a TD here, on 3rd and goal?
12:04 PM: Apparently not. Wallace rolled out and threw the ball away. Will they go for it on fourth?
12:05 PM: They will … into a disaster of a play that left them rolling on the ground at the 25-yard line. The ineptitude of the Ole Miss offense, when it counts, continues.
12:05 PM: I love you, Trevone, but it’s throws like that, that makes me scratch my head. That was almost a third interception. Way to recover with a first down throw to David Porter.
12:07 PM: There’s another near-INT thrown by Boykin. Sure, you’re up 42 points, but, still – don’t get cocky.
12:09 PM: Boykin’s got a bit of a rhythm going again. It’s surprising he’s got less than 200 passing yards up to this point in the game, with the 42 points TCU has put up as an offense.
12:11 PM: A holding penalty and a sack puts them out of field goal range. But with such a big lead at the end of the third quarter, a lot of what the Frogs do moving forward seems inconsequential. Well, you know, other than the fact that Gary Patterson is watching, and will assess everyone staying on the team for next season.
12:16 PM: Looks like Bo Wallace is just going through the motions at this point, going for long passes and the like. I guess when a game’s essentially out of reach, it’s an IDGAD mentality, right?
12:18 PM: And that’s another 3-and-out by Ole Miss’ offense. How many times have I said THAT today?
12:22 PM: There goes Boykin for another first down run. And that looks to be it for him today. 3 TD passes on 187 yards through the air? With a 42-point cushion, I think he deserves the break.
12:24 PM: Oberkrom’s field goal attempt is no good. Though, that’s probably the only “bad” thing that happened for TCU on offense today. You know, other than those two INTs.
12:25 PM: So, let’s take a look at total yards. 364 by the Horned Frogs, against … Eww. 117 by the Rebels. That kind of tells the story, doesn’t it?
12:28 PM: Wow – I totally forgot how vital WR Laquon Treadwell was to the Ole Miss offense. When he was lost, the Rebels kind of fell apart.
12:33 PM: Another interception thrown by Boykin. That’s three on the day – he should count his lucky stars none of them were of any consequence, in terms of the final result.
12:35 PM: Nonetheless, Ole Miss is on a third-and-4 play at the TCU 5-yard line, trying to at least avoid a shutout. Can they convert here?
12:37 PM: That delay of game penalty sure didn’t help matters. Now it’s fourth-and-9. Will they go for it here?
12:37 PM: Nope. They elect for the field goal. They definitely avoid the shutout, but now it’s 42-3. Still isn’t a good look for the Rebels well into the fourth quarter.
12:44 PM: TCU’s just eating up clock, here. They’ve made their statement. No need to embarrass them anymore than is necessary.
12:46 PM: Sure, Boykin didn’t have his best day – 187 yards and 3 INTs on top of 3 TDs – but make no mistake. TCU massacred Ole Miss. And this could have EASILY have been worse than the 42-3 score we’re seeing right now.
12:47 PM: Only thing now is the Gatorade bath head coach Gary Patterson is about to get.
12:48 PM: There it is. Despite missing a CFP berth, this was a banner year for TCU.
12:56 PM: To think, this was TCU’s first Bowl win vs. an SEC Team since Sammy Baugh was QB … in 1936. That’s 78 years ago.
Well, that’s all she wrote, folks.
Hope everyone has a great and safe New Year’s Eve, and the MSR will see you all in 2015!