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No. 6 TCU waits out two weather delays to defeat Kansas State

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The TCU Revenge Tour of 2017 entered Saturday 3-0 against teams that beat the Frogs last season. Make that 4-0.

No. 6 TCU waited out a 3-hour weather delay before the game and another in the fourth quarter to cruise past Kansas State, 26-6 in Manhattan.

The Frogs more or less put the game away on their second possession, which started at the K-State 36-yard line thanks to a 22-yard punt. TCU made the most of the opportunity when Kenny Hill took a 7-yard keeper into the end zone. Two Jonathan Song field goals gave TCU a 13-0 lead, but a fumble by TCU’s Darius Anderson gave Kansas State (3-3, 1-2 Big 12) the ball at the TCU 24.

However, playing behind backup quarterback Alex Dalton with starter Jesse Ertz injured, Kansas State could mount only a 38-yard Matthew McCrane field goal in response.

TCU (6-0, 3-0 Big 12) put the game away to open the second half with its best drive of the day: a 13-play, 75-yard march that ended on a 1-yard Sewo Olonilua plunge. After another weather delay early in the fourth quarter, Olonilua pushed over the exclamation point score with another 1-yard run.

Hill suffered a number of drops from his receivers and still posted a 27-of-37 day for 297 yards with no turnovers. Kyle Hicks led the Frogs on the ground with 16 carries for 58 yards to go with five catches for 50 yards.

Delton was completely limited by TCU’s defense, hitting only 11-of-29 passes for 146 yards with 19 carries for a team-high 39 yards.

No. 12 Oklahoma hangs on to beat Texas and remain in Big 12, CFP races

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What looked at the beginning looked like a familiar rout turned into an instant classic. No. 12 Oklahoma looked like it was primed to blow out an undermanned and unprepared Texas but instead found itself overcoming a fourth quarter deficit as Baker Mayfield‘s touchdown pass to Mark Andrews pushed the Sooners over the Longhorns, 29-24.

Oklahoma (5-1, 2-1 Big 12) roared out of the gate of Saturday’s Red River affair, mounting a 20-0 lead before Texas could mount so much as a serious drive. Mayfield’s second pass of the game was a perfectly-placed 54-yard rainbow to Jeff Badet for a touchdown. Rodney Anderson glided in untouched for a 15-yard scoring run, and a pair of Austin Seibert field goals staked the Sooners to a 20-point edge.

But Texas (3-3, 2-1 Big 12) finally woke in the second quarter, set up by a 41-yard Kyle Porter kickoff return and completed on a 16-yard screen pass from Sam Ehlinger to Porter. The Sooners were driving just before the half in an attempt to stretch the lead back to 20, but John Bonney became the first defender to intercept Mayfield this season on a 4th-and-3 pass. That allowed Texas to mount a responding drive, as Joshua Rowland knocked in a 34-yard field goal to pull the Longhorns with 10 at the half.

Texas nearly intercepted Mayfield again on the first possession of the second half, but linebacker Breckyn Hager could not corral the pass that hit him in the numbers, and Seibert’s third field goal pushed the lead to 23-10.

Texas moved 75 yards in 13 plays, largely on Ehlinger’s legs, on the ensuing possession, and Chris Warren‘s 1-yard run, aided by Ehlinger pushing him across the goal line, cut the lead to 23-17 with 4:27 to play in the third quarter. The Longhorns were primed to take the lead when Ehlinger had Devin Duvernay streaking uncovered down the sideline, but his 42-yard pass carried the receiver out of bounds and the ‘Horns turned the ball over on downs. No matter, Texas moved 73 yards in eight plays to take the lead on an 8-yard Ehlinger (278 passing yards to go with a game-high 106 yards on 22 carries) run with 8:01 to play.

After spending the entire second half in a slumber, Oklahoma’s offense awakened when it had to do so. Mayfield found a wide open Andrews for a 59-yard touchdown. Mayfield’s 2-point pass to Andrews sailed out of bounds, forcing the Sooners to defend a 29-24 lead with 6:53 to play. Playing his fourth and (probably) final game against Texas, Mayfield finished 17-of-27 for 302 yards with two touchdowns and an interception.

Ehlinger led Texas to midfield but left the game after banging his head on the Cotton Bowl turf, and Shane Buechele entered and took the ball to the Sooners’ 31-yard line with 2:45 to play. Texas would get no further though, as Buchele was sacked and a pair of penalties pushed the Longhorns’ into 2nd- and 3rd-and-long. Ehlinger fired incomplete on third and fourth downs, and Texas did not get the ball back until the 49-second mark at their own 3-yard line. With no timeouts remaining, Texas moved to midfield but no further, and Oklahoma had its sixth Red River win in the last eight years.

Oklahoma opens up early lead, but Texas hanging around

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Oklahoma appeared on its way to another Red River rout, but Texas fought back to make a game of it. The Sooners lead 20-10 at the break.

Baker Mayfield has absolutely dazzled so far in his Red River finale, hitting nine of his fist 10 throws. After forcing a punt to open the game, Trey Sermon ran for 31 yards on three carries to open the Sooners’ first drive, and then Mayfield found Jeff Badet over the top for a perfectly-placed 54-yard touchdown strike.

Oklahoma’s defense, which couldn’t stop a cold against Baylor and Iowa State, forced two straight three-and-outs on the Longhorns’ next two drives, and Oklahoma capitalized with a field goal and another touchdown, a 15-yard Rodney Anderson dash. Anderson carried seven times for 35 yards in the half, while Sermon led all rushers with 46 yards on eight carries.

After Texas turned the ball over on downs near midfield, Sermon put the Sooners in business with a 42-yard pass to Marquise Brown, but the drive ended in Austin Seibert‘s second field goal of the half.

Kyle Porter finally got the Longhorns on the board with a 41-yard kickoff return (with a 15-yard late hit added on) and then a 16-yard screen reception, cutting the lead to 20-7 with 3:23 left in the half. Playing without three opening day starters on the offensive line, Sam Ehlinger spent most of the first half under duress. He completed 10-of-19 passes for 113 yards and Texas’s ground efforts with eight carries for 13 yards.

The Sooners appeared primed to push the lead back to 20 after rushes of 16 and 21 yards by Mayfield and Anderson to open the following drive, but John Bonney intercepted Mayfield (his first in 202 throws) on 4th-and-3 at the Texas 31-yard line with 1:07 left. Mayfield closed the half 11-of-16 for 197 yards with a score and a pick.

Texas converted the turnover into a 34-yard Joshua Rowland field goal as time expired.

Oklahoma will receive to open the second half.

West Virginia closes with 29 unanswered points to rally past No. 24 Texas Tech

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One week ago, West Virginia was ranked No. 23 in the AP poll and played every bit like you’d expect the No. 23 team in the country to play in challenging but ultimately falling in a loss to No. 8 TCU. However, voters dropped the Mountaineers out of the rankings and inserted Texas Tech at No. 24, rewarding them for a win at Kansas — something everyone in the Big 12 save Charlie Strong does.

Voters will rectify that tomorrow.

West Virginia rallied from an 18-point second half deficit with 29 unanswered points to knock off the 24th-ranked Red Raiders, 46-35. The win lifted Dana Holgorsen to a 4-1 lead over his former player and colleague Kliff Kingsbury.

Texas Tech’s offense came out firing, as West Virginia did not force a punt until the Red Raiders’ seventh possession and only one boot in their first nine touches. Nic Shimonek fired four touchdown passes, two bombs to freshman T.J. Vasher and a pair of short tosses to Dylan Cantrell and Keke Coutee, but the Red Raiders built their early lead on the ground. Texas Tech harassed West Virginia quarterback Will Grier for much of the game and held Justin Crawford in check for the first two-and-a-half quarters.

Tre King 30-yard touchdown run gave the Red Raiders a 35-17 lead with 9:11 to play in the third quarter. Texas Tech (4-2, 1-2 Big 12) again moved the ball on their next possession, but Michael Barden missed a 37-yard field goal to close the drive — his third miss of the day. That would prove crucial.

Once West Virginia (4-2, 2-1 Big 12) found a way to protect Grier, Texas Tech could not stop the Mountaineers. More specifically, Texas Tech could not stop Grier.

An 8-yard strike to David Sills pulled West Virginia within 35-24 at the 5:07 mark of the third quarter, and a 32-yard rainbow to Ka'Raun White (plus a 2-point strike to Sills) pulled WVU within 35-32. Texas Tech appeared to seize back momentum after Grier was stuffed on a 4th-and-1 sneak, but an examination of the spot gave West Virginia the first down by the nose of the ball. Grier put West Virginia on top for good on a 17-yard strike to White on the next play.

Grier’s fifth touchdown pass of the day to Sills (his third scoring snag) gave West Virginia an insurance score with 3:23 to play, and Kyzir White’s interception of Shimonek sealed it with 1:49 left on the clock.

Grier closed the day hitting 32-of-41 passes for 352 yards with five touchdowns and one interception, while Shimonek was 24-of-39 for 323 yards and four touchdowns against one pick. 

Texas Tech leading West Virginia through one half

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Through one half in Morgantown, Texas Tech is threatening to run West Virginia off its own field. The Red Raiders have not punted and lead 28-17 at the half.

Texas Tech forced two West Virginia three-and-outs and turned them into quick touchdowns. The first came after the first drive of the game, when Nic Shimonek hit T.J. Vasher for a 60-yard snatch-and-dash on the Red Raiders’ second snap.

West Virginia raced down the field in three plays, equaling the score on a 31-yard strike from Will Grier to David Sills. Texas Tech returned volley, this time moseying down the field in 10 plays, the last of which a 6-yard strike from Shimonek to Dylan Cantrell.

The Red Raiders’ defense held serve on the next possession by forcing a 43-yard Mike Molina field goal and, after a missed field goal of their own, forced a second three-and-out, which turned into Shimonek’s third touchdown toss of the first half, a 6-yarder to Keke Coutee.

West Virginia answered with a 5-yard Justin Crawford run and appeared in position to take its first lead when Texas Tech’s punt team took the field for the first time of the day. But punter Dominic Panazzolo ran 13 yards around the left side on 4th-and-1 to keep the drive alive, and Shimonek hit Vasher on a 53-yard bomb one play later. 

The Mountaineers momentarily posted their first true stop of the half on Texas Tech’s final possession of the half when Shimonek was intercepted in the end zone, but the pick was wiped out after a roughing the passer penalty. Coutee, however, dropped a touchdown pass on third-and-goal, and Michael Barden missed his second field goal of the half, doinking a 23-yarder off the left upright.

Shimonek finished the half hitting 17-of-24 passes for 252 yards and four touchdowns. A host of Red Raiders have pieced together 18 carries for 86 yards.

Grier has completed 18-of-22 passes for 184 yards and a touchdown, but the Mountaineers’ running backs have managed 13 yards in seven carries.

Texas Tech will receive to open the second half.