Though the Hoos had opportunities to stay in the game from start to finish, the team couldn't make big plays when it counted, while giving up too many to its opponents, an all-too-common theme of the season.
As argued by Streaking the Lawn, however, the opportunities were there. TCU, in spite of their top-25 ranking, certainly showed their vulnerabilities against Virginia.
They turned the ball over, they committed stupid penalties, and they struggled to move the ball too. The difference: TCU capitalized off Virginia's mistakes, while the Hoos just didn't have it in them.
The No. 17 TCU Horned Frogs defeated the Virginia Cavaliers on Saturday afternoon, 27-7, in a game that held some resemblance to the Frogs' victory over Kansas last week.
TCU's struggles inside of the red zone carried over into this week, as the Horned Frogs turned the ball over twice while inside Virginia's 20-yard line. Still, quarterback Casey Pachall and wide receiver Brandon Carter provided enough offense to lead TCU to victory.
The Horned Frogs' defense was strong as usual, creating four turnovers, keeping the Cavaliers off the board until late in the fourth quarter when Virginia backup quarterback Phillip Sims hit E.J. Scott in the back of the endzone for a 5-yard score. It was the first touchdown that TCU's defense had allowed since the 2011 Poinsettia Bowl.
In Waymon James' absence, TCU used several players to makeup for the loss of rushing productivity. Matthew Tucker ran for 52 yards on 15 carries, while Trevone Boykin carried the ball three times for 51 yards.
TCU wide receiver Josh Boyce caught a touchdown pass early in the second quarter, giving him 18 touchdown receptions in his career. He is now TCU's all-time leader in that category.
Box Score Hero: While Pachall needs to be more careful with the football while in the red zone, he still had a solid outing, throwing for 304 yards and three touchdowns. Meanwhile, Carter hauled in five passes for 128 yards and a score.
Rankings Ramifications: The Horned Frogs actually dropped a spot after a similar victory over Kansas last weekend, so it will be interesting to see what happens this time. Ohio State, who is currently one spot ahead of TCU in the rankings, struggled in defeating UAB at home on Saturday. Could that sway the voters into moving TCU ahead of them?
But Did They Cover? TCU came into the game as 19-point favorites, so it barely covered. Meanwhile, the final score total didn't even come close to reaching the over/under of 54 that was set during the week.
For More On This Game: Frogs O' War is the place to go for news and analysis on TCU, while additional coverage on Virginia can be found at Streaking The Lawn.
Next Week's Schedule: TCU will travel across town to face SMU, while Virginia returns home to host Louisiana Tech.
The UVA defense has kept the game close, holding TCU to just two field goals in the third quarter. Freshman kicker Jaden Oberkrom has showed off his long range, draining field goals from 46 and 47 yards.
In the first half, TCU scored two touchdowns on passes from quarterback Casey Pachall. TCU wideout Brandon Carter has been the game's leading receiver, grabbing five receptions for 128 yards and a touchdown.
But the real story has been the TCU defense. Although UVA was able to break through with a couple long runs in the third quarter, the TCU defense has simply been too tough. They have allowed only one third down conversion (out of nine tries) to Virginia.
UVA managed a productive drive midway through the second quarter. But after eight plays and 50 yards, quarterback Michael Rocco threw an interception.
The TCU defense has forced two turnovers so far, recovering one early in the second quarter, and held UVA to just 34 rushing yards on 13 attempts.
Wide receiver Brandon Carter is emerging as a dominant force to compliment Josh Boyce. Both have a touchdown, but Carter has been the real star. In the first half, he has grabbed two passes -- both caught with one hand -- for 111 yards.
Aside from those big plays by Carter, though, the UVA defense has kept the game close, even forcing a red zone interception.
After one quarter, the No. 17 TCU Horned Frogs lead the Virginia Cavaliers, 7-0. TCU scored on a 68-yard pass from Casey Pachall to wideout Brandon Carter, who made an impressive one-handed catch before making his way into the endzone. So far, the Horned Frog defense has proven too tough for Virginia. The Cavaliers have managed just three first downs, and had to punt three times.
Virginia's struggles on offense are connected to their running attack, which has managed just seven yards on six attempts so far. Still, Virginia's defense is keeping things close, which is an improvement from last weekend, when they allowed 56 points to Georgia Tech. Temperatures in Fort Worth could approach 100 degrees today, so fatigue may be a factor.