TCU Stuns No. 21 West Virginia in Thrilling Finish

Richard LangfordCorrespondent INovember 3, 2012

November 3, 2012; Morgantown, WV, USA; TCU Horned Frogs wide receiver Brandon Carter (3) runs after a pass reception against West Virginia Mountaineers safety Karl Joseph (8) during the first quarter at Milan Puskar Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE
Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

No. 21 West Virginia was upset on their home turf when TCU's Trevone Boykin connected with Josh Boyce on a two-point conversion in the second overtime to give the Horned Frogs a 39-38 win.

It was a low throw that was ruled a catch on the field and withstood after replay. It was very close, and one of those calls where there likely wasn't enough to overturn the call no matter which way it went.

The Mountaineers never should have let this one get to overtime. 

West Virginia's maligned pass defense showed up for the first 58 minutes of this game. Then they lost Boyce about 20 yards beyond the line of scrimmage, and after catching a pass from Boykin, he scampered untouched for a 94-yard touchdown with 1:28 left to tie the game at 31. 

This was an exciting but sloppy game. Both teams struggled with ball security and it seemed to come at times when they were on the precipice of securing momentum. 

After taking a 7-0 lead into the first quarter, TCU was completely outplayed in the second. TCU allowed two Geno Smith touchdown passes and a one-yard touchdown run by Shawne Alston to enter the locker room at halftime trailing 21-14. 

TCU then fumbled away possession on the second play of the half, and at that point, it seemed like this explosive West Virginia team was ready to bury its opponent. 

It didn't happen. TCU's defense held the Mountaineers to a field goal after that turnover and was fantastic the rest of the way.

The defense returned a touchdown to pull TCU within four at 24-20 and continued to play tough the rest of the way. Of course, the inaccuracy of West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith made that job easy. 

Smith ended up 32-of-54 with 260 yards, three touchdowns and an interception, and his game was not as good as the stat line suggests. 

He made some questionable decisions, which included under-throwing a deep receiver by 20 yards and getting picked. Smith also had an injury scare after a big hit, and perhaps an ill-advised leap by the QB, as CBSSportsBig12 alluded to with this tweet.  

Geno Smith, your future agent just called. He says don't jump like that.

— CBSSportsBig12 (@CBSSportsBig12) November 3, 2012

Meanwhile, Smith has not only fallen out of serious Heisman contention, he might not even be the best candidate on his own team.

West Virginia's Tavon Austin is an electric game-changer, and he almost locked up this win when he grabbed a punt, made several cuts without slowing down and raced 76 yards to cross the goal line with 3:19 remaining in the game to give the Mountaineers a temporary touchdown lead. 

That wasn't even Austin's most exciting play on the day. He took a shovel pass in the first half and juked, what seemed like, the entire TCU defense while making his way down the field for a 43-yard score.

I watched the run with my own eyes, but it was hard to believe any human could cut so fast. I am in complete agreement with this fan

Tavon Austin just does unimaginable things on a football field.

— Nathaniel Jones (@NateJones24_) November 3, 2012

Smith wasn't the only electrifying dual-threat QB on this field. TCU redshirt freshman Trevone Boykin also flashed his skills. 

Boykin was getting next to no protection, and time and again he was forced to extend plays with his feet, which he does really well. Boykin runs like an elusive running back. He is fun to watch, and he has all the tools. He just needs to dial it in a bit, as his accuracy comes and goes.

He had a costly pick on the goal line in the second half. Halfway through the fourth quarter with his team driving, CBS' Patrick Southern points out this happened: 

I'd say #WVU's defense came up with a big stop, but Trevone Boykin had chances for at least two huge plays and missed badly.

— Patrick Southern (@patricksouthern) November 3, 2012

We will be hearing a lot about this young and talented signal-caller in the coming years.