TCU: Regular or Extra Christiany?

Remember when Kentucky Fried Chicken was Kentucky Fried Chicken? Back before it hid the grease in the moniker KFC? Same apparently goes for TCU football. The TCU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics informs us they would prefer all sports stories stick with TCU. Subsequent references are suggested as Horned Frogs or simply Frogs. Ribbit. The official name of the school, in case you didn’t know, is Texas Christian University.

I don’t know the football team’s current religious affiliation, but I can tell you that TCU football has found God. He comes in the form of Coach Gary Patterson, who is 55-20 at the FW (that’s Fort Worth for those of you not afeared of the military) school. On Monday, Texas’ Mack Brown gave Patterson the props he deserves, rattling off the stats: TCU has won its last four bowl games, they’ve beaten the last five Big 12 teams they’ve matched up with on the field and Patterson won 73% of his games.

Brown compares TCU to Boise State, another giant beater that seemed to come from nowhere. “College football has not been fair to them,” Brown said. “They're as good as Boise State, but they’re not on TV enough. We’ve gotten national attention, and they haven’t gotten it because of TV.”

Texas comes into Saturday’s game ranked No. 7, down from 4 after a lackluster performance against supposedly lowly Arkansas State. Meanwhile No. 19 TCU opened the season by sucker-punching Baylor 27-0. The telling statistic for Brown? The Froggies held the Bears to 78 yards in the second half and did so without stud defensive end Tommy Black touching the field for reasons that have not been divulged. The Amphibians also nabbed four interceptions against the Baptists.

Just as impressive in the opener was QB Andy Dalton in his first college start throwing for 205 yards. He also does a good job leading the option attack, something that the Horns had a tough time defending last season. Texas defender Frank Okam notes TCU runs a lot of misdirection and is similar in many way to Texas A&M offensively. “But they’ve got a lot more speed than A&M,” he said. Texas will likely have to counter that speed without defensive end Brian Orakpo, who suffered what appeared to be a knew injury acquired on what most certainly was a dirty chop block.

In hindsight would this former Southwest Conference foe have been a better choice to join the Big 12 than Baylor? Brown sidestepped that question, but admitted TCU is “every bit good enough to be in the Big 12. They’ve earned the right to be considered one of the best teams in the nation.”

And the Christians should provide a real view of whether the Texas team is deserving of that same status. God willing.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More by Joe O'Connell
This Job Will Change Your Life
This Job Will Change Your Life
Former staff reflect on the zigs and zags of life post-Chronicle

Sept. 3, 2021

Top Books to Read in 2020 As Everything Falls Apart
Top Books to Read in 2020 As Everything Falls Apart
In a COVID-strained year, tales of families repairing their lives and the caste system's effect of Black Americans made an impact

Dec. 18, 2020


mack brown, Gary Patterson

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle