TCU has not beaten Texas Tech in Lubbock since 1991.
In fact, the two teams have met only three times since the Southwest Conference dissolved after the 1995 season.
Texas Tech won the first game, 70-35 in 2004 in Lubbock, behind then quarterback and current co-offensive coordinator Sonny Cumbie.
TCU took the second game in 2006, and Tech took the third last year in a 56-53 triple overtime win, both games played in Fort Worth.
On Thursday, the two teams meet again in Lubbock, both as members of the Big 12 Conference.
“I’ve only been there once,” TCU head coach Gary Patterson said in the Big 12 weekly coaches’ teleconference. “I think they love the game in Lubbock. They’re loud. When you go to Texas Tech, they have a high emotional level. You’ve got to be able to match that.”
The Horned Frogs enter the game on Thursday night with a record of 1-1, losing to LSU in the first game of the season, 27-37, and then defeating Southeastern Louisiana last week 38-17.
“I think we’ve played two really good football teams,” Patterson said. “LSU really showed their power and what they can do. SLU is a lot more talented. We played a couple tough football games.”
In last week’s win, senior quarterback Casey Pachall left the game with a broken left forearm.
He went on to have surgery later that day.
Over the summer and during fall camp, it was clear a quarterback controversy was breaking out between Pachall and sophomore quarterback Trevone Boykin, who started the remainder of the 2012 season for the Horned Frogs after Pachall’s dismissal.
“From the beginning of the year I said we had two starters,” Patterson said. “(Boykin) is an unbelievable competitor, that’s what it starts with. He runs the offense completely different than when he started last year against Iowa State after he was a running back. He gives us dimension.”
The dual-threat quarterback started his third game of the year against Texas Tech and went 24-of-46 with two interceptions for 332 yards through the air and recorded 16 yards on the ground.
Opposite Boykin in the pocket for Texas Tech is freshman walk-on Baker Mayfield.
Mayfield wanted to go to TCU and held out for an offer from the team but never got one.
“I didn’t think he was a walk-on,” Patterson said of Mayfield. “He was a guy that came to our camp. We thought he was a really good player, but for whatever reason we didn’t pull the trigger. Obviously, we aren’t very smart. We also didn’t offer to Johnny Manziel and we got Trevone Boykin. I think Baker’s done an incredible job these first two games. He’s a winner. He comes from a terrific high school program and has done a great job at Texas Tech. We’ve got our hands full this week.”
The Horned Frogs offense is more than the quarterback position with a loaded tailback position in the backfield with senior Waymon James and sophomore B.J. Catalon.
James averages 6.8 yards per carry this season, a stat that puts him at No. 5 nationally, and Catalon has racked up 111 yards.
Junior wide receiver and Preseason Biletnikoff Award Watch List member Brandon Carter is a popular target on the outside as well.
This TCU offense will have to face Texas Tech’s defense, an aspect that Patterson feels gets overlooked.
“(The thing) I don’t think they’re getting credit for right now is that they’re playing better on defense,” Patterson said. “They’ve been very good this season. Coach (Matt) Wallerstedt and his staff have done a great job.”
On the defensive side of the ball for the Horned Frogs, Patterson announced that sophomore right end Devonte Fields, pre-season All-American and reigning Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year will start against the Red Raiders.
Returning All-American cornerback senior Jason Verrett will also add to the Horned Frogs’ defensive attack.
Verrett and fellow cornerback junior Kevin White lead the Big 12 thus far in 2013 with four pass breakups each in the first two games.
As far as Patterson is concerned, his team needs to be prepared for whatever Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury has up his sleeve.
“Going into a ball game like Tech, we have to be prepared for everything,” Patterson said. “Coach Kingsbury is a guy that does a great job with trick plays, so we’ve had to look back through a lot of archives of plays that have appeared to us and things he’s used. Our biggest problem is being able to get enough reps and see all of it.”
After last year’s triple overtime loss to the Red Raiders, Patterson’s goal for Thursday is simple – score one more point than the home team.
“They’re exciting and explosive,” Patterson said. “We’ve got to find a way to win by one point. In this league, you find a way to win; I don’t care if it’s 54 to 53 or three to two. The think for us is you go find a way to win.”
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