FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — That record 82-point game is already in the past for No. 10 TCU.
The Horned Frogs (6-1, 3-1 Big 12) now have some road work to do Saturday, going to No. 20 West Virginia for the first of consecutive games that could have a significant impact on determining the Big 12 champion and perhaps who might play in the college football playoff.
“I don’t know if any of the games that we played on the road, except for the Baylor game that we played this year, would be more magnitude than what this ballgame is,” Patterson said Tuesday, three days after TCU’s 82-27 victory over Texas Tech.
West Virginia (6-2, 4-1) has a four-game winning streak that includes beating then-No. 4 Baylor 41-27 on Oct. 18, the Bears’ only loss. The only losses this season for the Mountaineers were the season opener against then-No. 2 Alabama and their Big 12 opener versus then-No. 4 Oklahoma.
When the first College Football Playoff rankings were released Tuesday night, TCU was No. 7, the highest-ranked Big 12 team and 13 spots ahead of West Virginia.
The clash between the TCU and WVU is already garnering national attention. ESPN’s College GameDay is setting up Saturday morning in Morgantown, West Virginia.
After that trip, the Frogs return home for a matchup the following weekend against No. 11 Kansas State (6-1, 4-0), the Big 12 leader but No. 9 in the playoff rankings.
Patterson expects receiver Josh Doctson, who rolled his right ankle against Texas Tech, to be able to play Saturday against the Mountaineers. But the coach said backup quarterback Matt Joeckel’s season is likely over after he took a shot to the leg Saturday.
The Horned Frogs have already split a tough two-game swing against Oklahoma and Baylor, beating the Sooners at home before a wild 61-58 loss in Waco. But they almost certainly have to win the rest of their games to be part of the first four-team playoff.
Patterson pointed out that the Frogs have already accomplished one of their season goals.
“We wanted to get to be bowl eligible, we got to that point. Now everyone counts once,” Patterson said. “Two tough games in a row. West Virginia going to Morgantown, really they’ve playing really well right now on both sides of the ball, and then Kansas State. You can say the same about them.”
And talk about TCU the same way.
The Frogs are now the nation’s highest-scoring at 50.4 points a game, while allowing less than 22 points. Junior dual-threat quarterback Trevone Boykin has established himself as a legitimate Heisman Trophy contender, including a career-high 433 yards with a school-record seven touchdown passes in the romp over Texas Tech.
During its current winning streak, West Virginia has held the potent offenses of Baylor and Oklahoma State in check. The Mountaineers won 34-10 at Oklahoma State last weekend.
“We’re going to have to get ready,” Patterson said. “We expect West Virginia to play its best game to date.”