The TCU Horned Frogs lost two games by a combined total of nine points -- a 50-48 loss to Baylor in the season-opener and a 40-33 overtime loss to SMU midway through the year -- but ended up in San Diego, matched with Louisiana Tech in the Poinsettia Bowl. Judging by TCU's resume, Wednesday's matchup should've been somewhat lopsided, at least on paper.
Facing an 8-4 Louisiana Tech squad, though, TCU got all it could handle, only just barely squeaking by for a 31-24 win. It took 14 fourth-quarter points by the Horned Frogs and some timely defensive stops, but TCU was able to leave San Diego with an 11-win season and a bowl victory to boot.
Luke Shivers drew the Horned Frogs even midway through the fourth quarter, capping a clock-burning 18-play, 71-yard drive that took 9:21 of game-time. Just over three minutes later, TCU was back in the end zone for what turned out to be the game-winner. This time around, though, it was by way of the quick strike as Casey Pachall found Skye Dawson for 42 yards and the touchdown.
The defense held and the celebration was on as TCU took the seven-point win over a resilient Louisiana Tech squad.
Even in a losing effort, Louisiana Tech head coach Sonny Dykes didn't misplace his sense of humor. Hopefully this one-liner was completely unintentional.
Sonny Dykes: "If you asked most of the national media, they wouldn't know what state Louisiana Tech is in."
Multiple individual records were set in the bowl game, as well. Colby Cameron's 43 attempts, a product of Sonny Dykes' offensive scheme, were a new Poinsettia Bowl record. Casey Pachall also set single-season school marks for completions and yardage in the win. Both records were previously held by Andy Dalton.