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Red Raiders win crazy, ugly Big 12 opener by outlasting TCU, 20-10

Backup Webb comes into toss go-ahead TD late in fourth quarter

Posted: September 12, 2013 - 10:25pm  |  Updated: September 13, 2013 - 12:19am
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Texas Tech's J.J. Gaines looks to escape a tackle from TCU's Aviante Collins after making an interception during their game on Thursday in Lubbock. (Stephen Spillman/AJ Media)  Stephen Spillman / AJ Media
Stephen Spillman / AJ Media
Texas Tech's J.J. Gaines looks to escape a tackle from TCU's Aviante Collins after making an interception during their game on Thursday in Lubbock. (Stephen Spillman/AJ Media)
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Kliff Kingsbury’s likely to have all sorts of crazy memories of his first Big 12 Conference opener as Texas Tech head coach.

The fact he won will make all the bizarre twists and turns go down easier.

Davis Webb flipped a tie-breaking 19-yard touchdown pass to Bradley Marquez with 3:48 left Thursday night, and Tech went on to beat TCU 20-10 in front of a national television audience and a Jones AT&T Stadium crowd left limp and hoarse, but happy.

“It was pretty bizarre,” Kingsbury said, “but I thought our kids’ effort was incredible the entire time, their level of effort from start to finish. They played their hearts out and found a way to win an ugly game.”

Webb’s touchdown pass came on third-and-13, capped a nine-play, 75-yard drive and broke a 10-10 tie. Webb came in cold with 6:13 left when fellow freshman Baker Mayfield came out of the game with an injured right leg at the start of the series.

Webb had to throw the decisive pass to Marquez only because what appeared to be a 49-yard scoring pass moments before was nullified when the receiver, DeAndre Washington, dropped the ball just short of the goal line in jubilation. Washington caught a pass in the right flat and dashed down the home sideline, which opened up because of Marquez’s determinedly staying with a block on TCU cornerback Kevin White.

Tech was called for unsportsmanlike conduct for celebration after the apparent TD. When the video-review booth determined Washington dropped the ball early, the Red Raiders had possession at the TCU 15 after the penalty mark-off.

Then came a couple of run-play calls sandwiched around a holding penalty before Tech decided against playing safe for a go-ahead field goal. Webb lofted a fade-route pass to Marquez in the right corner of the end zone, and he pulled it in over White.

Not bad for a true freshman who lost out in the battle to be starting quarterback.

“That’s the way he’s approached it since we made our decision,” Kingsbury said. “He’s taken advantage of the reps, and he’s a good player. He’s a really good player, and I couldn’t be more proud of the way he stepped up and came out and won the game for us.”

Ryan Bustin tacked on a 37-yard field goal with 2:48 left for the final margin.

And the Red Raiders (3-0) got to celebrate on a night when their defense repeatedly rose up to make up for a slew of missed scoring opportunities. Tech held TCU (1-2) to 3 of 16 on third down and did a good job bottling up Horned Frogs quarterback Trevone Boykin for much of the game.

“That’s the best defensive performance I’ve been part of since I’ve been a coach,” Kingsbury said. “We put them in bad spots all night offensively, and they kept stepping up, turning them over and getting stops against a talented offense with a big-time quarterback. I couldn’t be more proud of that side of the ball.”

Mayfield finished 21 of 40 for 216 yards and a touchdown, but threw the first three interceptions of his career. On the decisive series, he went down and then came up favoring his right leg after being pressured in the pocket.

“He said he’s OK,” Kingsbury said. “I think he twisted his ankle or knee or something. But he was walking around and was OK after the game.”

TCU running back B.J. Catalon’s 17-yard touchdown run tied the score at 10 with 6:28 left in the game. But it was a bitter defeat for the Horned Frogs in a game of what-ifs.

TCU punt-return man Brandon Carter had two big returns called back in the second half. Late in the third quarter, Carter took a would-be 51-yard runback inside the Tech 20, but most of it was wiped out by clipping. Early in the fourth quarter, an apparent 69-yard punt-return touchdown was nullified when officials ruled Carter made an invalid fair catch signal.

As Carter ranged to his right to move under Taylor Symmank’s punt, he flicked his left arm in a slight pinwheel motion — just enough for officials to deem it a fair catch.

“You had the questionable fair catch, which was a touchdown,” TCU coach Gary Patterson said. “I still have to see that, because nobody has seen it. But we don’t tackle the guy down the sideline. We stop him, we have a chance to go kick a field goal and win.”

Undaunted, the Frogs moved nine plays and 69 yards before Catalon punched it in on a third-and-7 from the Tech 17. That tied the game for the first time with 6:28 left.

It could have been moot by then had Tech cashed in any of several scoring chances. In the first half, the Red Raiders got no points on four series in TCU territory. On separate series, the Red Raiders had first downs at the TCU 29, 49, 36 and 29.

All those chances went by the boards. Interceptions killed the first two drives, then back-to-back holding penalties — one on a play in which Mayfield had dashed for a first down inside the TCU 10 — led to a punt. On the last chance in the first-half sequence, a third-down sack and a missed field goal left Tech unable to add to a 10-0 lead.

Tech built that edge early. Running back Kenny Williams took a swing pass 50 yards down the home sideline for a touchdown on the sixth play of the game. It probably would have been a short gain, but for Marquez’s blocking, as he drove TCU safety Sam Carter into the Tech sideline.

Bustin made it 10-0 with a field goal at the 3:16 mark of the first quarter.

 

don.williams@lubbockonline.com

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6
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Unbelievable!

Congrats, I'm exhausted, gutsy win. Could have blown it open early, let them stay around too long. Washington please run in end zone next time, Kudos to Webb for the save. Defense won the game. Next time mix up more runs, shovel pass, trick plays, etc. to keep them off balance. Amaro was awesome but eventually they keyed on him. Way to go coaches, keep learning and keep up the energy. Things are fun again. Jakeem, "The Dream", Grant....like those jukes buddy. Good job Baker, 3 pics but only 1 was real (work on the touch passes some, sometimes too much on it), everybody played well and with ALOT of HEART. Way to go guys, Wreck'm!

5
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Ugly, but I'll take it!

I think our D was what impressed me most. TCU isn't an offensive powerhouse necessarily but to keep them as low a we did says something. I don't think we could have done that in years past. Baker and Co on offense have a lot to work on but I'm not going to hate on them too much. Refs, I don't know what to say, weird calls all over the place, both sides. Bring on TxSt!

GUNS UP!

5
0

Giving up only 10 pts to any Big 12 offense ...

... is going to make us a formidable team. Our freshman QB and weak o-line was exposed, and 20 ppg won't win many games. Unless last nights D was for real. Good job D coaches.

7
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unanswerable questions

--How can some officials rise to the D-1 level when they officiate as poorly as we saw Thursday night?

--Are there so few good officials in the nation that the Big 12 is forced to use only poor-quality leftovers?

--For a big, national-TV ESPN Thursday-night game, couldn't the Big 12 send us its best crew?

There probably *are* answers to these questions, but there are no *good* answers. The Big 12 should be ashamed of the officiating it presented to the nation Thursday night.

7
5

Congratulations Kliff

Although you had a little trouble in the middle of the game, you kept on fighting and did not give up. Good job (not necessarily pretty). Congratulations on another win.

Where are all the naysayers that said Tech just played wussy schools and that the real test would be TCU. Hello, we passed the test.

2
6

a little early

Christmas came 104 days early for Tech this year, the replay officials saw to that. Missed a fumble and gave Tech the wrong spot when the fool dropped the ball before going into the end zone. The step-up defense again gave up over 400 yds and the offense rushed for a whopping 43 yds on 26 carries. Passing attack threw 3 interceptions and was just 53% in completions. If Tech is trying to get Under Armour to compete with Nike and Oregon with their uniforms, they are failing badly. By the way, Goober doesn't have 5 o'clock shadow after all! Up close, he just forgot to wash his face!!!

7
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Ugly Uniforms

Aside from all the good comments from my fellow bloggers on this site, I'd like to add something not germane to the game, but to the program. Talk about an ugly game, those gray uniforms! I thought we are the RED Raiders. We haven't worn RED yet! I'm not a fan of the monochromatic look, be it all white, all black, and especially not all gray. I might like all red, but I've yet to see our namesake's color! What is so bad about sticking to our classic black helmets for all combos; wearing red jerseys and white pants for home games, and white jerseys with red pants for our away games? Do we really need to emulate the Oregon Ducks with a different crazy ugly uniform each week. Let's get classic and stick to it. Guns up! Beat Texas State! In RED!

1
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Uniforms

I hated the gray uniforms at first, but by the end of the game they had grown on me some. All solid black is still my favorite for a night game. Otherwise all red with the black helmet is my next favorite. I agree about us being the RED Raiders...we need more red. Heck I am open to 100% red, helmet and all if we feel the need to do something different. I HATE all white, I know it is sometimes a must for away games, but still. At very least let us have a black helmet. Regardless I don't care if we wear orange and pink polka dots, as long as we win each game! With the mistakes I saw last night that will be hard. We need to improve our execution and mental mistakes pretty much across the board.

GUNS UP!

4
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Uniforms

I agree with you, RaiderHawk. Since I have known the raiders, their colors have been red and black not grey and not white. I would rather see the grey than the white they wore in the first game, however the black and the red uniforms are the ones I would like to see them wear.

Somebody mentioned 50 shades of grey in another post and Tech really did have 50 shades of grey as they started sweating during the game. At leas the black uniforms hide the wetness.

Wichita65. You have been around Tuber too long. You have an excuse for everything. I guess if he loses this week, it will be because of the catastrophic loss of his starting quarterback. Bad calls are part of the game. There were bad calls on both sides of the line of scrimmage. The only thing I can agree with you on is that the guy was a fool to drop the ball before crossing the goal line. I would assume that Kingsbury will have a long talk with him this week about that.

4
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great game

What a gutsy win. I am glad we have more than one quality QB in the barn! The D looks good and they were really laying the wood! I like the uni's but agree that we shouldn't get too crazy with the combinations. By the way white was worn by the best teams in Tech history in the 70s. Wichita65, are you sure you are on the right site? There were some poor calls in the game, but it seemed very even, coming from an old ref's point of view. The missed fumble was balanced by the poor interception call that TCU benefitted from, which may have been the worst I have seen in some time.

3
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UT Game

I heard through the grapevine that our jerseys and helmets for the UT game would be burn't orange since the Longhorns will be wearing their home whites.

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Raiderhawk

I agree. The uniforms were ridiculous. The red raiders have always been red and black. Where did this grey thing come from and why? I don't care if we wear red, black, or a combination of any of the two with white. It seems that the uniform should have some resemblance to the school colors. Regardless of the uniforms, the black helmets with red double T is a necessity. Despite the uniforms and the poor refs, it was a good game. With a few more games under our belts,things may really start looking good.

6
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Uniforms

Whose decision wa it to have gray? Red and black those are the only colors.

4
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Uni's

Not to belabor the fact, but some of you need to check your history. The all-white uni's were worn in the 70's, particularly the white helmets. Google pictures of older teams and you can check it out, but don't make claims that they "have always been red and black". Simply not so.

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@aztrxan

Regardless of what the uniforms were in the 70's, the school's colors have always been red and black. Grey and white have never been Texas Tech school colors.

4
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Aztexan

I do acknowledge that all white uniforms were the uniform of the 70s. My point is: I don't like the monochromatic scheme. Never have. Never will. Regardless of history. Let's get red as in RED Raiders. Just sayin' . . . .

3
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Good Win

It's a "W," no matter what it came from. You can be certain Patterson would have taken a win in this ugly bowl. Check the conf standings at the end of the season and see what this did for Tech.

Patterson yelled himself hoarse at his own players during the first half. Couldn't talk coming off the field. Kingsbury was cool and collected all the way. We have a real jewel in KK.

I didn't care for the uniforms, although grey on grey with a black helment might be a good road uniform.

Tech should be 6-0 when it shows up at WVU. I'm starting to worry that Hance and the Rascals will run Kingsburg since HE is getting the credit.

1
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Officiating

Worst ever.

3
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Interesting

It was a sloppy victory but nevertheless it is interesting when 9 (Including a couple of mine) out of 16 posts talk about the uniform colors rather than the game.

1
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Mayfield

My question is whether the "not so great" QBing was just due to freshman nerves or if TCUs D was really that good or if SMUs D is really that terrible, or a combination of all 3. I know Mayfield is young but he looked more relaxed in his very first game.

2
5

A win over a good team

It was a messy but good win against a good team with a very good defense. The freshman quarterback played like a freshman for much of the game, and TTU missed chances to put the game away in the first half by making too many mistakes on offense. Still TCU is one of the better teams in the Big 12, and TTU beat them by the same margin LSU did. I'm not wild about the uniforms either, but if the players like different looks each week, I can cope. wichita seems extra annoyed on this. Maybe he does miss Tubby, or maybe he had money on the wrong side. If so he might consider going into Tubby's old Ponzi scheme and trying to get his money back that way. I understand there are a few Hance boys around town who bought in and might be looking to unload their shares cheap.

2
2

Hindsight

I actually like the uniforms! I would rather see those than the white ones. In hindsight resting Mayfield and playing Webb the whole 2nd half may have been a great move by Coach K. I thought we should have left Mayfield in the whole 3rd Quarter. Seeing how he got hurt and Webb came in and had a whole half of game time experience under his belt, looks like a great move in hind sight! These are the kind of games you need to win to have a great season! The defense showed up big! Against great defenses and with a young QB sometimes the offense will sputter and you need the defense to make up the difference! I am excited about the possiblities! Wreck'em!

0
0

Back to a true Big 12?

Still wish we had the opportunity to play A&M though. Not the same without them. Some non-Texan actually had the audacity to suggest to me last week that we get Texas State to replace A&M and bring Houston in to get back to a 12 school Big 12. Don't know. Thoughts?

4
1

Hance?????!!!!!!

Why are people still bringing up Hance? Can't you get over it? The last 2 coaches are gone, and good riddance to both! We got something good going here. There is nothing to be gained by bringing up nonsensical history. Hance is one of the guys responsible for bringing in coach K. Time to move on or go away!

2
0

Feaco

I understand your point. Too much chatter about the uniforms. The game is the greater subject. I said I concurred with most of the comments about the game. Just wanted to make an ironic comment about "ugly game" carrying over into the ugly gray uniforms. Regardless of uniforms, I'll support the Raiders, black, red, gray, white. 'Nuff said on uniforms. Beat the Bobcats. Guns up!

1
1

Unis

For those of you whining about white. All teams have a white, usually for road, though not always

Gray is another neutral, like white. Tons of teams have gray pants. I thought they were completely bad ass, but what I or any of the folks on this site think isn't the point. Recruits like these wild uniform looks. It's for the players, not us. And surely we can all agree that these unis are a huge step up from some of what we've had lately, where the stripes looked more like UnderArmour logos than anything else. Twitter comments seemed to directly correlate, older folks hated 'em, younger folks loved 'em (overgeneralizing of course).

My main thought is if it's a blackout night, why not wear black? And for next week's Celebrate Cotton game, of course they should wear mostly white. I do think we'll start seeing some mixing and matching of colors and you might find the gray more palatable with a red helmet and pants.

And though I'm digging the high gloss helmets, I'm still holding out for a matte black sometime this year.

Finally, though, what's with the "TECH" above the new video board. It's in the wrong place, looks like our scoreboard was assembled by a drunk monkey.

1
1

plus, that baselayer

Plus, come on, did you see that baselayer?

https://twitter.com/darrenrovell/status/378302201174581249/photo/1

Again, this wasn't for us, it's for the players/recruits.

1
1

traditional?

I'm sorry but the only thing traditional about our uniforms have been the Black helmet with the Double T logo. Aside from that Tech changes uniforms all the time. We don't have a traditional uniform per say. OU, Texas and Alabama have traditional uniforms that they have worn since their existence. The fact that most of you are commenting more so about the uniforms than the actual game its self is a bit ridiculous. This is the 21st century and this is a new era so get over yourself. Just an FYI the school colors are "scarlet and black". Current senior graduating in December.

3
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Uniforms

Bottom line is none of us really care what the uniform looks like. What we all really care about is the win-loss columns. Having said that, I don't begrudge anybody for stating their opinion on the uniforms. It does seem a little strange to have a uniform that does not contain any of the school colors. If we keep winning, I don't care if they wear pink.

2
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Return to Big 12 with WHO??????

Texas State......are you kidding? No way.....no.....obviously only some non-Texan would suggest something this stupid. Houston? Possibly.....good media market and we all know what Sumlin and Kool Kliff did there......as I recall they were pretty stout during the old SWC days too.

Not to be-labor the gray uniforms, but for a moment there I thought it was Okie Lite and wondered if I was watching the wrong game. Here is one of my favorite combos: black helmet, scarlet tops, black pants. I do like the new stripes which look like the guns up signal. I hope we don't wear them too often......we have the greatest color combo in the country.....why dilute the brand?

On the game: best defense I've seen since the Spike Dykes era.

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