On Saturday in Lawrence, the Kansas Jayhawks won a Big 12 football game. They beat an especially woebegone version of TCU, 27-26, BECAUSE TCU BUTT-FUMBLED THE BALL AWAY TO KANSAS INSIDE THE 10-YARD LINE WITH 71 SECONDS LEFT IN THE GAME.
Butt fumble des Horned Frogs de TCU. Ballon récupéré par les Jayhawks. Kansas file vers la victoire !— TBP College Football (@thebluepennant) October 27, 2018
Kansas 27, Texas Christian 24 pic.twitter.com/TdkuE60eSK
Here, we’ve put it on a loop for you:
The Horned Frogs were trailing by 3 when Darius Anderson ran directly into the butt of one of his offensive linemen, lost the ball, and watched the Jayhawks fall on it.
Kansas got a first down after that, enabling it to kill off almost the entire remainder of the clock. The Jayhawks took an intentional self-safety on fourth down with one second left, then punted the ball away.
TCU didn’t return a pooch for a touchdown, and it probably wouldn’t have anyway, but not having dismissed returner KaVontae Turpin made it even less likely.
KU’s students then stormed the field to celebrate their school’s first win against TCU since 1997. The Jayhawks had lost the last six, all since TCU joined the Big 12 in 2012.
TCU fell to 1-4 in conference play, dead last in the league by virtue of Kansas holding a head-to-head tiebreaker.
Kansas hadn’t won a Big 12 game in football since Nov. 19, 2016.
That was 710 days before this game — or one year, 11 months, and 11 days. That day, Kansas beat Texas. In football. And don’t you ever forget it.
How did TCU manage to lose to Kansas? Extremely carefully. Losing to the Jayhawks isn’t something a team usually just stumbles into.
Normally, you have to be bad, and you have to play a particularly bad game even by your standards.
For instance, Central Michigan lost to Kansas in Week 2, the Jayhawks’ first road win since 2009. The Chippewas are terrible; entering Week 9, they were 120th out of 130 FBS teams in S&P+. But play-by-play data put them in the 10th percentile of all teams that week, lower than they’ve been in any other week, though they’ve approached it a few times. The same thing is true of Rutgers, a perpetual fountain of sadness that had its worst percentile performance (7) when it lost to the Jayhawks in the GAME OF THE CENTURY.
The advanced number-crunching isn’t in on TCU’s Saturday disaster yet. The Frogs appear to have gone about things at least a little bit differently than the norm. They averaged about 7 yards per play to about 5 for the Jayhawks. But they did lose the turnover battle 2-0, with the last of those costing them a golden chance to take a late lead.
So, this is the lesson: To lose to Kansas, you either need to play an epically horrible game, even by your own standards, or you need to BUTT-FUMBLE THE BALL AWAY TO THEM RIGHT IN FRONT OF THE END ZONE.
They will talk about this result in coaching clinics for years.