West Virginia head coach Neal Brown said he and his team would get better during the bye week, and it seemed to work as the Mountaineers took a 29-17 victory over TCU at the Horned Frogs’ Amon G. Carter Stadium on Saturday.
Leddie Brown led the Mountaineers to their best game on the ground during Big 12 play, dashing for 111 yards and three touchdowns in the contest. Although that was Brown’s best performance in a league game this year, it accounted for less than half of WVU’s 229 rushing yards.
Despite the clear victory for WVU, it was far from apparent early on, as TCU scored a touchdown before either team had snapped the ball. Derius Davis of TCU started the scoring off on the opening kickoff, taking it 100 yards to the end zone to put the Horned Frogs ahead.
The Mountaineers answered on the ensuing drive with the help of Casey Legg, who made his first of three field goals on the night.
WVU took its first lead of the game on its next drive, as Jarret Doege led the Mountaineers 94 yards down the field in just under eight minutes. Brown punctuated the drive with his first score of the night from five yards out, putting West Virginia ahead.
TCU took the lead back in the second quarter as it put its own long drive together, capped off by Max Duggan found Taye Barber open in the corner of the end zone on fourth down to get back in front. That, however, was the Horned Frogs’ last touchdown of the game, as they would only add one more field goal later in the second quarter.
WVU added 10 more points in the second half, but it was the Mountaineer defense that stepped up big to seal the win. The Mountaineers held TCU scoreless, while forcing three turnovers in the process, starting with a pair of interceptions in two of the first three Horned Frog drives of the half. The game was pretty much decided in the fourth quarter when Duggan connected with Quentin Johnston, but WVU safety Sean Mahone ripped the ball out for Charles Woods to recover.
Doege led the Mountaineer passing attack, throwing 21-of-28 for 257 yards on the night. Garrett Greene also saw a drive, bursting through the line on a zone-read for 67 yards, maintaining his title as the team’s second-leading rusher. He completed his only pass attempt of the game for a yard.
Tony Mathis added 48 rushing yards as well, and nearly got in the end zone for his first touchdown of the season on the team’s penultimate drive. Sean Ryan led the team in receiving with 87 yards on four catches, while Bryce Ford-Wheaton caught a team-high six passes for 65 yards. Winston Wright also had four receptions, chipping in 59 yards.
Duggan was 16-of-26 passing for the Horned Frogs, adding the touchdown to Barber and two picks to Darryl Porter Jr. and Woods. Johnston paced the game with 113 receiving yards, but the Mountaineer defense stuffed TCU running backs Zach Evans and Kendre Miller, who had 62 and 54 yards, respectively.
The victory moves West Virginia to 3-4 on the season, giving the team its first league win of the season to improve to 1-3. TCU falls to 3-4 overall, with a 1-3 mark in the league as well.
West Virginia’s next clash is back in Morgantown against Iowa State. Kickoff is set for 2 p.m. ET at Milan Puskar Stadium and it will be shown on ESPN+