Sunday’s film session won’t be fun for the West Virginia Mountaineers. As they review the tape of their 31-30 loss to TCU they’re going to see that they gave the game away…literally. Sometimes that’s a metaphor that we use to describe a team that didn’t execute or had a bad play here or there. In West Virginia’s case it was five giving TCU opportunity after opportunity.
“They did a good job of forcing turnovers,” West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen said. “That’s no excuse. We need to do a better job of protecting the football and taking care of the football.”
Even with the offensive miscues West Virginia matched TCU stride for stride and found themselves in position to upset the Frogs and gain traction in the Big 12 championship race. The Mountaineers put their defense against the nation’s top scoring offense and held them to their lowest point total since they scored 30 against Minnesota on September 13. It wasn’t enough though as the Horned Frogs’ Jaden Oberkrom booted a 37-yard field goal as time expired to win the game.
West Virginia’s Josh Lambert kicked a 23-yarder to give the Mountaineers a 30-21 lead early in the fourth quarter and set the scene for TCU to mount their comeback. A six-yard touchdown run by B.J. Catalon put TCU within reach at 30-28 and then Oberkrom’s field goal sealed the deal.
“I thought that if we could make it through the third quarter, that with the wind we could change the field position and get close enough,” TCU head coach Gary Patterson said. “We were in a lot of trouble, but we fought back and got some stops so we could do that.”
The come from behind win by TCU was the third consecutive photo-finish between these two schools with the 2012 and 2013 games going into overtime.
For the Horned Frogs the win keeps them very much alive in the championship hunt and sets them up with a huge home game next week against the Kansas State Wildcats who are currently sitting in first place. West Virginia, meanwhile, joins Oklahoma in the “outside looking in category” with two conference losses.
*Section Photo credit to Tony Gutierrez, Associated Press; Featured Photo (above) credit to Tyler Evert, Associated Press