How it all happened Saturday at Royal-Memorial Stadium:
Texas 7, TCU 7. First-quarter MVP? Maybe Brad Van Vark, the head referee who got way too much airtime than anyone wanted. There were 12 combined penalties, a series of offsides, false starts, holds and blocks in the backs that marred things for both sides. Both teams’ final drives finally yielded points, however. Texas’ Jake Smith caught his first pass — a touchdown, no less — since last year’s regular-season finale.
TCU: Darwin Barlow 1-yard run (Griffin Kell kick, 4:01)
Texas: Jake Smith 5-yard pass from Sam Ehlinger (Cameron Dicker kick, :21)
Halftime — TCU 20, Texas 14. Even more penalties, including some of the more serious variety (a defensive pass interference, a roughing the passer and a targeting flag, which resulted in Juwan Mitchell’s ejection early in the quarter). There were 17 combined flags in the first half. Ehlinger looked sharp on UT’s lone scoring drive, connecting with Smith and Brennan Eagles on nicely-placed passes in TCU zone coverage. But the Frogs put up a couple of late field goals, the last of which was made possible by an Ehlinger pick.
TCU: Max Duggan 5-yard run (Kell kick, 14:22)
Texas: Brennan Eagles 45-yard pass from Ehlinger (Dicker kick, 13:01)
TCU: Kell 28-yard field goal (1:28)
TCU: Kell 32-yard field goal (:32)
TCU 23, Texas 21. Both teams tried to take control, but neither did. The Longhorns appeared to be making a move on a scoring drive that ended with Roschon Johnson’s fourth score of the season, but Texas couldn’t take advantage of a stripped fumble recovery that had set the Horns up at TCU’s 36; an illegal man downfield call on right tackle Christian Jones wiped out a big 26-yard catch by Al’vonte Woodard to the Frogs’ 8-yard line. Instead of first-and-goal, the Horns ended up punting.
TCU: Kell 48-yard FG (12:11)
Texas: Roschon Johnson 7-yard pass from Ehlinger (Dicker kick, 9:55)
Final — TCU 33, Texas 31. The Horns were in position — twice — to perhaps put this game away, but both times came up empty. After taking a 29-26 lead on the second important fourth-quarter two-point conversion in as many weeks, Texas forced a TCU punt with eight minutes left. But that drive fizzled. And Keaontay Ingram’s fumble at the goal line as he tried to stretch the ball for a go-ahead score in the closing minutes let the Frogs close things out. Duggan’s scoring scamper was a real dagger, and it came right up the middle of the defense.
TCU: Kell 28-yard field goal (13:36)
Texas: Malcolm Epps 7-yard pass from Ehlinger (Keaontay Ingram run, 9:56)
TCU: Duggan 26-yard run (Kell kick, 4:01)
Texas: Safety (:00)
First downs: TCU 25, Texas 16
Rushes-yards: TCU 50-226, Texas 24-152
Passing yards: Texas 236, TCU 231
Comp-Att-Int: Texas 17-36-1, TCU 20-30-0
Return Yards: TCU 71, Texas 54
Punts-Avg.: Texas 6-45.0, TCU 4-42.8
Fumbles-Lost: Texas 1-1, TCU 1-1
Penalties-Yards: Texas 12-92, TCU 14-109
Time of Possession: TCU 34:51, Texas 25:09
PASSING: Texas — Ehlinger 17-36-236, 4/1. TCU — Duggan 20-30-231, 0/0
RUSHING: Texas — Johnson 5-63, Ehlinger 8-49, Ingram 11-40; TCU — Duggan 17-79-2, Miller 10-67, Barlow 8-28-1, Foster 8-26, Barber 3-15, DeMercado 1-4, Spielman 2-4, Evans 1-3
RECEIVING: Texas — Smith 6-49-1, Ingram 3-52, Wiley 2-63, Eagles 1-45-1, Black 1-12, Johnson 1-7-1, Epps 1-7-1, Brewer 1-1, Schooler 1-0; TCU — Barber 7-51, Johnston 3-70, Conwright 2-42, Foster 2-14, Spieman 1-20, Davis 1-9, Thomas 1-8, Barlow 1-8, Evans 1-6, Lynn 1-3