For three quarters, TCU found itself in a dogfight with SMU.
The Horned Frogs led the Mustangs, 17-10, at the end of the third stanza, but their offense was struggling. Six drives in the second and third quarters resulted in 40 total yards, five punts and a missed field goal. It looked like SMU might be able to pull off the upset.
Then the floodgates opened.
TCU took advantage of two Garrett Gilbert interceptions and exploded for 31 fourth quarter points to win going away, 48-17.
It didn’t all go according to a grand design. One touchdown came when LaDarius Brown returned an attempted SMU onside kick 45 yards for a touchdown, while the Horned Frogs’ final score was a 66-yard interception return by Sam Carter.
Despite the seemingly-healthy win, there are still signs of sickness with this TCU team, now 2-2 on the year. The offense is wildly inconsistent and the defense doesn’t resemble the stout units of recent years.
The Horned Frogs are now a combined 9-8 since joining the Big 12 and games like this don’t bode well for their future. Head coach Gary Patterson won’t be able to count on freaky fourth quarters to pull out wins in the Big 12.
This TCU team has a lot of work to do before it visits Oklahoma next weekend.