How TCU reworded history and kept its magical season alive

GLENDALE, Ariz.– In among Sonny Dykes’ early days at TCU, he was handed a gift by a Horned Frogs fan.It was a copy of “Spread Development Football,” a 1952 book by Dutch Meyer, the famous Frogs coach who is the spiritual predecessor to Dykes and understood for his offending fireworks and versatile passing attacks, along with his tutelage of quarterbacks like Sammy Baugh and Davey O’Brien.

This copy isn’t just any copy. It’s got a hand-written inscription from Meyer to Amon G. Carter, the paper publisher and Fort Worth civic booster whose name decorates the TCU football arena. It resides in Dykes’ workplace, the exact same one he first populated just 12 months ago when the Frogs were coming off a 5-7 season. The same one he’ll return to this week to get ready for the College Football Playoff National Championship– a title TCU last claimed in 1938, when Meyer wandered the sidelines.Dykes, a fan of history

, couldn’t have known then that he ‘d be writing his own chapter so soon.TCU, the independent school that was neglected of the Big 12 when the Southwest Conference dissolved in 1996, needed to battle and scratch and claw back to importance, finally earning a Big 12 slot in 2012. Neglected again after going 11-1 in 2014, the Horned Frogs lastly got their shot and didn’t cower, providing the most significant upset in the CFP period, beating No. 2 Michigan, 51-45, in the highest-scoring game in Feast Bowl history.TCU endured

and advanced as they have all season, winning seven straight games by 10 points or less during a 12-0 routine season. The Horned Frogs did it once again on Saturday by being the assailant versus Michigan, the 13-0 Big Ten champs coming off a playoff appearance in 2015 while TCU was sitting in the house.

“I believed we were definitely the most physical team on the field tonight,” Dykes said.They did it

behind a first-year coach in Dykes, who went 19-30 and got fired at Cal in his only previous Power 5. They did it with a three-man front against Michigan’s vaunted offending line, which won the Joe Moore Award as the best unit in the country, and by pushing the Wolverines around on offense, including hurrying for 265 backyards, nearly 100 yards more than Michigan.They did it with

their indefatigable quarterback, Max Duggan, a preseason backup who had actually never played in a championship game in his TCU profession, who ended up being Heisman Prize runner-up and is now the first player in history with numerous death and hurrying TDs in a College Football Championship game (2 passing, 2 hurrying). Dykes approximated today that 125 players on the team had never ever been to a bowl.

After coming into the season as the backup, Max Duggan finished second in the Heisman voting and led TCU to the national championship game. Norm Hall/Getty Images

They did it behind a stellar defensive effort by Dylan Horton, a defensive end who wasn’t ranked or offered a star ranking as a recruit, who began his college profession as a safety at New Mexico, then transferred to TCU and place on 75 pounds. Versus the Wolverines’ collection of blue-chip talent, Horton had 4 sacks, a forced fumble and a pass separation. The Horned Frogs’ defense, which was questioned earlier in the season by the CFP committee, responded with two pick-sixes

They won regardless of losing starting running back Kendre Miller, who ran for 1,342 yards and 17 TDs this year– he left the game with a knee injury with about five minutes left in the very first half. His backup, Emari Demercado, a junior-college transfer from Saddleback College who had one profession 100-yard game at TCU given that 2018, had 17 carries for 150 yards and a touchdown.They did it in the

first game Dykes had played because his mentor, Mike Leach, passed away– utilizing a version of Leach’s Air Raid offense that’s indicated to level the playing field in between the haves and have-nots.

“He probably would have gotten a bang out of it,” Dykes said.The independent school with 93,000 living alums that ranks 38th all-time on the NCAA wins list(connected with Virginia )went toe-to-toe with Michigan, which has drawn more than 100,000 fans in 309 consecutive football games and is the winningest program in college football history.All week long, TCU was confident while Michigan sometimes seemed overconfident. Michigan linebacker Junior Colson needed verification of TCU’s conference affiliation.Michigan pound Junior Colson talked a bit about #TCU’s offense on Wednesday.( He required some help remembering what conference the Frogs play in)#FiestaBowl|@HigginbothamIns!.?.!— Frogs Today(@frogstoday)December 28, 2022″You constantly have to fight for reliability,”Dykes stated after the win.” It becomes part of the offer. Part of what makes TCU terrific, though, is that they roll their sleeves up, they go to work, they

determine a method to do it … I think we all have a chip on our shoulder. It belongs to the Horned Frog way.”2 Associated In making the playoff, TCU was able to exorcise the satanic forces of 2014, when the Horned Frogs lost both a 24-point lead in a 61-58 loss to Baylor then dropped from 3 to 6 in the last CFP rankings, falling behind Florida State and Ohio State despite being not playing in the last week of the season. Now, they’ll be the first team from Texas to bet a national title since the Longhorns in 2009. It’s not always quite, and it’s not constantly the exact same formula. But these Frogs keep finding new methods to win. “That’s who we are, that’s our football group, and we anticipate teeing it up once again in 10 days and having a chance to win a national championship, “Dykes said.Now, he gets a possibility at history himself, behind a wide-open offense and a quarterback who won the Davey O’Brien award, named after Meyer’s star, the Frogs’only Heisman winner.Eighty-four years after Meyer made the

Horned Frogs the darlings of college football, Dykes can discover inspiration in the inside cover of the book on his rack.”The spread development has actually astonished fans throughout the country, and has produced championship teams for Texas Christian University.”

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