NCAA Game Summary - Utah at TCU|
(Saturday, November 14th)
Final Score: (4) TCU 55, (16) Utah 28
Fort Worth, TX (Sports Network) - Matthew Tucker scored two of the Horned
Frogs' five rushing touchdowns, as fourth-ranked TCU shredded the Utes for 342
yards on the ground and took a big step towards both a BCS berth and a
Mountain West Conference championship with a 55-28 dismantling of No. 16 Utah
at Carter Stadium.
Ed Wesley had a rushing score and 137 of those yards on 12 carries while
Jeremy Kerley and Antoine Hicks also logged rushing TDs for the Horned Frogs
(10-0, 6-0 MWC), who ran their win streak to 12 games and remained one of only
six teams in the Football Bowl Subdivision that is still undefeated.
Andy Dalton directed the offense on eight scoring drives and finished 17-of-29
for 207 yards with a 16-yard touchdown to Ryan Christian, who topped the
receiving corps with five grabs for 48 yards.
TCU came in fourth in the BCS rankings, the highest rated school outside of
the BCS conferences, and needs to get by Wyoming and New Mexico to achieve
perfection in the regular season. The two opponents have a combined record of
"The biggest thing for us is that we need to finish. We have two games left,
one on the road. I understand how big of a win this is. I've been there. I've
beaten Oklahoma and gotten beat by SMU. We need to finish," said TCU head
coach Gary Patterson.
In addition, the Frogs are looking at taking a second Mountain West Conference
title since making the switch from Conference USA in 2005. Both Utah and BYU
are now 5-1 in conference play with both of their collective league losses
coming at the hands of the Horned Frogs.
It was the program's first win against Utah since September, 15, 2005 -- the
Horned Frogs' first ever MWC game.
Jordan Wynn was 16-of-32 for 219 yards, one touchdown and one costly
interception -- returned 15 yards for a touchdown by Tank Carder.
Eddie Wide was bottled up the stingy TCU defense, but managed to score amid a
14-carry, 25-yard showing. Shaky Smithson punched in two rushing scores,
gaining 23 yards on five touches.
David Reed hauled in six passes for 111 yards, including a 50-yard TD for the
Utes (8-2, 5-1), whose lone previous loss came back on September 19, a 31-24
setback at Oregon. Since then the team had won six straight games.
"They were who we thought they were. Tonight, that was a good football team. I
have been a head coach for five years, and that is the best team I've faced,"
said Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham. "They are a solid team from top to
bottom, and we knew we were going to have to play our best to compete tonight.
That did not happen."
TCU built up a 38-14 lead at halftime behind a balanced offensive attack and a
defensive touchdown from the nation's third ranked entering play.
Dalton and co. wasted little time in asserting the club's lofty ranking,
taking the game's opening possession 87 yards in eight plays to find the end
zone. Dalton kept the chains moving with an 11-yard pass to Christian on third
down and took it 12 yards himself on a keeper to gain enemy territory. Tucker
then took a handoff up the gut and cut up the right sideline for a 41-yard
Kevin Sharples fumbled away the ensuing kickoff and TCU set up shop on Utah's
16-yard line. The Utes' defense held and Ross Evans pulled a chip shot 26-yard
field goal wide left.
The Horned Frogs were thwarted on their next attempt with the ball as well,
and Utah tied the score with a quick 43-yard romp. Wynn rolled left and found
DeVonte Christopher between coverage for a 31-yard gain and Smithson snuck
through the left side on the next play to even the score on a 10-yard TD run.
The hosts struck back less than two minutes later, though, as an 80-yard drive
resulted in a 14-7 score. Dalton found Christian again on third down to keep
the trek going early on, then hit him on a short pass in the right flat and
the receiver juked a defender to the ground before taking it up the sideline
for a 16-yard score.
Utah went three-and-out and set up to punt at the end of the first quarter,
but Greg Burks blocked the kick and TCU recovered at the visiting 23. The
hosts capitalized shortly into the second frame as TCU lined up with three in
the backfield and Kerley, a wide receiver, followed the two blockers around
the right end for a three-yard TD and a 21-7 lead.
TCU's defense forced a quick punt that Kerley returned 39 yards down to the
Utes' 29. Dalton's 28-yard pass to Jimmy Young then set up Hicks' one-yard run
inside the left pylon on second down to make it a three-score game.
With less than a minute gone by it was 35-7 after Carder stepped in front of
an ill-advised pass by Wynn along the right sideline and took it 15 yards
untouched into the end zone.
"They gave us a lot of different looks and a lot of different zone blitzes,
but we picked it up every time. The whole offense did a tremendous job. Ever
since we talked about starting earlier before the BYU game, we've been
starting early," said Patterson of the team being ready to play.
The Frogs took their next possession down to the Utah six-yard line but Dalton
was picked off by Lamar Chapman and the Utes quickly countered as Reed went up
over a defender to snatch a 50-yard TD pass.
Evans booted a 30-yard field goal just before halftime for a 38-14 game.
Utah netted three yards on three plays coming out of the break and Evans
finished off a quick ensuing TCU drive with a 42-yarder to further stretch the
After a pair of unsuccessful drives, Utah put together a 10-play, 63-yard
possession that Wide capped with a one-yard score to cut the margin to 20
after three quarters.
However, the Horned Frogs' offense just rumbled back down field 83 yards in
seven plays with Wesley scoring on a 14-yard run. The Utes elected to stop
punting at that point, but all that resulted was a four-and-out and Tucker
added a nine-yard rushing score with close to five minutes left for a
commanding 55-21 game.
Utah wound up capping the scoring on a second 10-yard rushing score by
Smithson with 2 1/2 minutes left on the clock.
Last season, the Utes slipped by TCU with a 13-10 decision on their way to
posting the FBS's only undefeated season in 2008. That win ran Utah's record
to 5-1 all-time versus TCU having won the last three matchups coming in...The
last four meetings were decided by seven points or less...TCU All-conference
defensive end Jerry Hughes came in averaging one sack per game and came out
with 1 1/2 on the night...Utah had just 11 first downs compared with TCU's
32...The Utes managed just 65 rushing yards and were outgained 549-284.
11/15 01:51:28 ET