Everything people were saying at the end of TCU’s upset win at Texas last night was basically true:
1. The Horned Frogs wanted this game more.
2. TCU has been much better on the road this season than at home.
3. The Longhorns were only about a touchdown favorite at Austin, so it’s not a huge upset.
4. The University of Texas is just having a down year.
All of these are accurate assessments, but all bury the lead story of the Frogs' 20-13 win. A three-word headline would suffice:
TCU OWNS TEXAS
The Horned Frogs have positioned themselves to outperform the Longhorns for the foreseeable future. Freshman sensation Devonte Fields is the ultimate example of why that is.
The Big 12’s best defensive lineman clobbered the Texas offense last night. Fields does this to
everybody, but he can even drop back in coverage and make an acrobatic interception when called upon. Just ask Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein, who threw only his third interception of the season to Fields two weeks ago.
Fields starred at Arlington Martin High School and literally could have stepped in as a starter at any major college in the country.
However, Fields’ huge footprints only travelled about 20 miles to Fort Worth. TCU head coach Gary Patterson had everything set up for Devonte.
Once the Frogs were finally headed to the Big 12, Patterson was clearly the best defensive coach the conference had to offer. The Horned Frogs had won the Rose Bowl less than two years ago and finished second in the country behind Auburn.
However, the overriding factor for Fields was staying close to his mother in Arlington. This is
testimony to how the DFW football landscape may change at the same lightning speed Devonte rushes quarterbacks.
There are few reasons left for Metroplex prep stars not to go to TCU.
For years, Gary Patterson has taken Top 40-50 recruiting classes and turned them into Top 10 teams. It often took a great deal of ingenuity. For instance, Jerry Hughes was a running back in high school before Patterson converted him into a speedy and ferocious defensive end.
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Now that he’s coaching in the Big 12, Patterson won't need to do much of that stuff anymore. After re-inventing Hughes into a Ted Hendricks Award Finalist (NCAA's best defensive end), he now has Fields up for the same award in his freshman season.
With a win like last night's victory in front of a national audience, TCU's days of Top 20 recruiting classes are fast approaching. That’s all Patterson needs to get his team to become a national championship contender again.
Meanwhile, the University of Texas will still get better recruiting classes on paper. But the gap will likely close substantially as TCU proves it has a better football program.
Locally, SMU and North Texas are obviously no threat to TCU in recruiting wars. Texas will always have strong pull in the Metroplex, as will Texas A&M.
But the 'Horns and Aggies will need to hit home runs outside of the Dallas/Fort Worth area, like they have in recent years with Vince Young and Johnny Manziel, respectively.
The big dogs in this area will often be playing their college football in Fort Worth. Then it will be up to Patterson to out-coach Mack Brown for Big 12 Texas supremacy. No worries.
TCU’s era of Texas dominance has begun, and there is no turning back.