TCU hosts West Virginia on Saturday afternoon at Amon G. Carter Stadium in the non-eagerly awaited game between the last two invitees into the Big 12 conference. Expect plenty of empty seats at a game "featuring" two teams that are 1-4 in the conference and 3-5 overall.
TCU is a 12.5-point favorite; the indifference is deafening ... with the exception of those who are gloating, "Told ya'!"
To steal a line from Coach Norman Dale in Hoosiers: "Maybe they were right about us! Maybe we don't belong up here!"
So far, every single naysayer that predicted fail on TCU after it left the cozy confines of the Mountain West Conference can celebrate victory. The same for the old guard who had been around the final decade or so of the Southwest Conference and feared the Frogs would return to the bottom of a power conference.
Done and done. Even with the creation of 345 bowl games, the Frogs are in danger of missing their first postseason game since the 2004 season when the team finished 5-6.
Predictions that the football team would challenge for the Big 12 title look increasingly stupid. They should never have been projected to finish high, even if the conference is down. Two seasons is too soon for a team to move into a power conference to win a title. They don't have the players student athletes.
Even had quarterback Casey Pachall not been injured, his line isn't good enough and his receivers have been bad.
Unlike the early to mid '90s when there were plenty of valid excuses and reasons why the Frogs stunk it up in the SWC, the current administration has taken those away. TCU has nearly every available toy and resource to flaunt on recruits and attract top talent. They may not be able to land the five-star kid away from Texas or Texas A&M, but they can land the player slightly below him.
They won't be able to win the conference every season, but they can be in the rotation of challenging every three or four years. This is not a question of defense. In two years, Gary Patterson should have an offensive line that can, you know, block. He better have receivers that can run the right routes and, you know, catch.
This is not as dark as the mid '90s when TCU was at the bottom of the SWC, or when the school was not invited to cool kids' table of the then-new Big 12.
This transition was always going to take more time than people wanted to admit, but the end result will not be as bad as the haters believe/desire.
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