‘Probably fastest team I ever played.’ TCU flashes speed, QB upside in loss to Ohio State

TCU coach Gary Patterson wasn’t happy his team lost to Ohio State on Saturday night. The Frogs could only blame themselves for mistakes that ruined its chances in a 40-28 loss to the No. 4 Buckeyes.

But Patterson is proud of what his team showed.

“Do I think we’re one of the better football teams in college football? I think we are,” Patterson said. “But how good can we be? Because if you don’t play well next week because you were too high this week – which I tried not to get them to be that way – then I think you’ve got a chance.”

Here are five takeaways from the game –

1. Robinson’s promise. Count yours truly among those impressed with quarterback Shawn Robinson through the first three games. He hasn’t been perfect by any stretch, but Robinson doesn’t get fazed when things aren’t going right.

Ohio State jumped out to a 10-0 lead when Robinson lost the ball on a strip-sack by Nick Bosa that turned into an OSU touchdown. Robinson responded on the next offensive series by leading an 84-yard TD drive, highlighted by a 42-yard completion to Jalen Reagor.

Robinson made a poor decision on a shovel pass in the second half. The OSU defensive line had blown it up, and Robinson tossed an interception to defensive tackle Dre’Mont Jones who turned it into a pick-six and 26-21 lead for the Buckeyes.

That was the middle score of a 20-0 run by Ohio State in a 4:01 stretch of the third quarter, but Robinson kept TCU in it with a 51-yard TD pass to TreVontae Hights late in the third quarter.

Robinson took a bad sack and made a poor throw on another interception in the fourth quarter, but held his own for the most part. Sure, he could’ve been better and Patterson would’ve liked to see him run on a couple plays instead of passing.

Overall, Robinson showed more promise than anything on the night.

“Well, the best thing that I saw, sometimes young players, they get glazed over. When bad things happen to them, their eyes glaze over. And they’re like, they don’t know; that never happened to Shawn,” Patterson said. “There’s things that happened to him today that he’s not going to make the same mistake again, I promise you.”

Added senior defensive end Ben Banogu: “Things are going to go wrong and things are going to go right, but at the end of the day he just has to know who he is and he has to keep playing. He plays in a spot where a lot of people rely on him and Shawn has been doing good. He’s been getting better and he will continue to get better.”

2. Speed kills. TCU is known for its speed. Ohio State recognized it.

“They’re a very fast team,” said Jones, Ohio State’s defensive tackle. “Probably the fastest team I ever played since I’ve been in college.

TCU running back Darius Anderson showed his speed. He rushed for a 93-yard touchdown, the longest rush in TCU history and the longest play from scrimmage Ohio State has given up in its storied history.

Reagor and Hights also showcased their speed on the outside with long catches.

3. Coaching blame. Patterson blamed himself and the coaching staff for a few of the mistakes made by the Frogs on the night.

The costly shovel pass in the third quarter by Robinson wasn’t the best call, Patterson acknowledged. It came on a third-and-five from the TCU 30, and a play that Ohio State had sniffed out twice before on the night.

Patterson also took blame for the final score of the 20-0 run Ohio State went on in the third quarter – a 24-yard fade pass from Dwayne Haskins to K.J. Hill. Hill got by Frogs safety Niko Small for the score.

“They came out in an empty set and we needed to roll over the top,” Patterson said. “They forced us to safety, made a missed adjustment because we hadn’t worked on it. So we didn’t have a guy in the middle of the field. So that’s our fault.”

4. OL chatter. Patterson thought TCU’s offensive line held up pretty well against Ohio State’s staunch D-line. The Frogs had to make a couple in-game adjustments, though.

TCU opened with Austin Myers at right guard and Anthony McKinney at left tackle. But McKinney was beat by Bosa on the strip-sack early on, and Myers moved back to left tackle.

Myers kept Bosa in check, notably making a solid block on a TD run by Sewo Olonilua.

TCU had been splitting series between Myers and McKinney at left tackle, and clearly wanted to get bigger up front by starting both of them against Ohio State.

“I thought they did a nice job with the run game, being physical against that group,” Patterson said. “I also thought they did a pretty good job of protection.”

Ohio State finished with three sacks on the night. TCU’s O-line hadn’t allowed one in the first two games.

5. This and that. TCU safety Innis Gaines had a team-high nine tackles, including 3.5 tackles for loss. He showed up. … Linebacker Garret Wallow had a solid game, too, and Patterson mentioned him by name afterward. Wallow finished second on the team in tackles with eight, including one tackle for loss. Wallow also had a nice hit on OSU QB Dwayne Haskins in the first quarter. … TCU had terrible field position much of the night. Eight of its 15 drives started inside its own 20. … Patterson’s quote of the night: “If anybody didn’t think it was a good football game, then you probably should just start watching some other sport.”

Related stories from Fort Worth Star Telegram