5 takeaways from TCU’s win against West Virginia: Horned Frogs get it done on the road

The TCU Horned Frogs defeated West Virginia 41-31 on Saturday, securing their eighth straight victory. The Frogs, on top of the Big 12 Conference, keep their perfect record intact.

Here are five takeaways from the game.

The Frogs stay perfect

For the third week in a row, the Frogs have won in a high-pressure environment. In their last two games, the Frogs picked up big-time wins in the friendly confines of Amon G. Carter Stadium.

Today, they proved they can get it done on the road. Morgantown isn’t an easy place to leave with a victory; the Frogs hadn’t defeated the Mountaineers on the road since 2014.

The Frogs’ chances of a Big 12 Conference Championship appearance grow with every victory. With four games left in conference play, the Frogs still have to take care of business. In college football, it only matters how you finish.

Kicking proves effective

TCU kicker Griffin Kell was huge in a tightly contested second half. He knocked in two field goals through the middle of the uprights.

Although the Frogs’ offense has not relied on field goals much this season, Dykes has a consistent, reliable point scorer in Kell. In the coming games, his accuracy will be key.

Big plays

The Frogs’ offense has the power to score on a moment’s notice. Big plays have proved valuable all year for the Frogs. They were, unsurprisingly, key against the Mountaineers. In the first half, the Frogs scored three 50-plus-yard touchdowns.

Quarterback Max Duggan made big plays when it mattered most. The senior QB finished with 341 yards and 3 touchdowns on 16-28 passing.

Wide receivers Quentin Johnston and Savion Williams also had big games. Johnston finished with 76 yards and a touchdown on four receptions. Williams tallied 97 yards on three receptions, including the game-sealing touchdown. If the Frogs’ offense continues this level of play, no lead is safe against TCU.

Starting slow

On Tuesday, head coach Sonny Dykes said the Frogs need to start strong. Once again, the Frogs failed to get out the gates rolling. TCU started with the ball and was unsuccessful in its first drive, punting the ball away.

The defense put the Frogs in a hole early, allowing the Mountaineers to reach the red zone in their first three plays. The Frogs have had success playing from behind this season. Is this type of play sustainable? Moving forward, it’s key for the Frogs to get out to a hot start.

Defensive consistency

For the third week in a row, the Horned Frogs have looked like a different team, defensively, in the second half. Defensive coordinator Joe Gillespie’s adjustments, once again, were effective.

Although the second-half play is promising, TCU will continue to play close if the defense continues its inconsistent play. As good as the offense is, its play won’t matter if timely stops aren’t made.

As the season continues, the Frogs need to showcase solid defensive play from start to finish.

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