Stevens: Lobos Fall Hard To TCU Horned Frogs, 69-0
Oct. 22, 2011
New Mexico Lobos Football - On The Mountain West Road
TCU Horned Frogs 69, New Mexico Lobos 0
By Richard Stevens - Senior Writer/GoLobos.com
For sure, the best thing about the New Mexico Lobos' Mountain West visit to TCU is that the 69-0 spanking is in the Lobos' rearview mirror and the winless Lobos can look ahead to a home game against Air Force.
"Being back home definitely will be good for our kids, especially after a day like we had today," said Lobo interim head coach George Barlow. "But you are still playing a quality opponent for the third time in a row.
"We have to find a way to get these guys motivated and next week you have to play assignment football, which is what Air Force forces you to do."
The big difference between Horned Frogs and Falcons is that the Falcons' defense has struggled throughout the 2011 season and the Air Force option attack - if you limit big plays - gives other teams a chance to hang around on the scoreboard.
There was no hanging around on the scoreboard for UNM in Fort Worth and there was nothing struggling about the TCU defense. Those defensive Frogs held the Lobos to 85 total yards while the TCU offense racked up 515 yards en route to a school-record 69 points.
The Frogs, who extended their Mountain West record to 20 straight league wins, might have had their way on offense against the Lobos, but UNM's Carmen Messinaagain showed that he has no plans to let down in his senior season.
Messina registered 12 tackles against the hard-hitting Frogs which is the fourth time this season that Messina has reached double digits in tackles. The Lobo linebacker is still the active leader in the Mountain West in tackles.
The Lobos (0-7, 0-2 MWC) might have had a few individual standouts on defense, but there is no question that the TCU Frogs imposed their offensive will against the Lobos. TCU was up 20-0 at the end of the first period, up 41-0 at the half and tagged on another 28 points in the second half.
Amazingly, the Lobo had only one player who registered more than 15 yards on offense and that was the 51 yards posted by sophomore running back Demarcus Rogers. Junior quarterback B.R. Holbrook had 15 yards passing, going 6-of-7 through the air. Ty Kirkcaught four passes, but only totaled six yards on those grabs.
UNM ended with 21 yards passing and 64 yards rushing. TCU rolled out a nice balanced attack with 264 yards on the ground and 251 yards passing.
"I didn't think we played well in any facet of the game," said Barlow. "I don't think our effort was what it needed to be."
The Lobos fell behind 20-0 in the first quarter and two of TCU's touchdowns were set up by UNM fumbles. The Lobos coughed up the ball on their first offensive play and also on their second offensive possession.
"It's deflating for the whole team," Barlow said of the fumbles and the early deficit. "We never recovered. I think our guys got really down. They were really deflated."
Barlow started Holbrook, but brought in Tarean Austinin an attempt to put some spark in the fading UNM offense. Austin completed 2-of-4 passes for six yards and had a minus eight yards on five rushing attempts. Barlow said getting behind early "throws everything off."
"When you get behind that much, it causes you to throw the ball more than you wanted to," he said. "Both (quarterbacks) continued to struggle."
While the Lobos failed to find much success from anyone on the offensive side of the football, the TCU Frogs were having no trouble. Quarterback Casey Pachall went 13-of-17 for 175 yards and two touchdowns. Quarterback Matt Brown had 51 yards on nine carries with two rushing scores. Ed Wesley had 74 yards on six carries for a 12.3 average.
The Frogs had five backs average 4.8 yards or more per carry. Rogers averaged 3.0 yards per carry for UNM and Wright averaged 2.8 yards - 14 yards on five carries. At the end of the third quarter, UNM had two first downs and 44 total yards. UNM ended the game with five first downs to 22 for TCU.
TCU had 455 total yards going into the fourth quarter and a few seconds into that final frame, TCU was up 62-0. The Frogs were kind to the Lobos down the stretch and late in the fourth quarter punted the ball away near the UNM 30-yard line.
TCU was 9-of-9 on scoring opportunities inside the red zone and 8-of-11 on third-down conversions. UNM was 1-of-12 on third-down conversions and never cracked the TCU red zone. UNM's average gain per offensive play was 1.8 yards and TCU's average was 7.9 yards on 65 plays.
First Half - TCU 41, Lobos 0
The game started about as badly as it could have started for the Lobos. One offensive play into the game and UNM's James Wrighthad been stripped of the football handing it over to the TCU Frogs. TCU scored and the Horned Frogs were up 7-0.
The Lobos' next offensive series ended the same way. This time freshman Crusoe Gongbaycoughed up the ball. The Frogs jumped on the opportunity again and scored to throw the Lobos into another early hole. UNM trailed at the end of the first quarter, 20-0, and three first-half turnovers helped TCU roll into halftime owning a commanding 41-0 lead.
The Lobos' seven possessions of the first half ended with three fumbles and four punts. TCU scored touchdowns on six of the Frogs' seven possessions.