Grambling struggles in 56-0 loss at No. 20 TCU
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP)
The two things Grambling State needed to avoid happened right away at TCU.
The 20th-ranked Horned Frogs scored on special teams and defense in the first seven minutes, even before Casey Pachall's three first-half touchdowns, and TCU won 56-0 Saturday night in its first game as a member of the Big 12 Conference.
''We knew the most important thing is to try to not turn the ball over and make mistakes, especially with a team like TCU,'' Grambling coach Doug Williams said. ''And to give up a TD right off the bat on the first punt, certainly is not the way to start off. And the interception, that was some easy TDs.''
Deante' Gray, one of 12 true freshmen to play for TCU, returned a punt 70 yards for a touchdown only 2 minutes into the game. Wayman James had a 1-yard TD run on the Frogs' first offensive possession before Elisha Olabode returned an interception 28 yards to make it 21-0 with 7:54 still left in the first quarter.
''Coming out all week, we were talking about how we can't play down to other teams' levels, and we knew that coming in,'' Pachall said. ''Everybody from the get-go, in the locker room, had the right mindset and the right focus about them, and we were able to do what we did.''
Pachall and Trevone Boykin combined to complete all 17 passes for TCU - the most in FBS history without an incompletion.
''I guess if you were going to script a first ball game, this is the way we'd want to do it,'' coach Gary Patterson said.
After the game, Patterson was presented a crystal ball in recognition of his 110th career victory - one more than Dutch Meyer, who led the Frogs to their only AP national championship in 1938. Patterson is 110-30 overall with 10 shutout victories one game into his 12th season.
After being one of only four FBS teams that didn't play on college football's opening weekend, TCU got off to a fast start in the debut of its $164 million completely redone stadium.
Pachall played only the first half, completing all nine of his passes for 201 yards and three touchdowns, two to Josh Boyce, while the Frogs jumped out to a 42-0 lead.
Boykin, a redshirt freshman, took over after halftime. He 34 yards for a score and threw a 7-yard TD to David Bush while hitting all eight of his passes for 75 yards.
''That's kind of a little disheartening,'' Williams said of that 17 of 17 passing by TCU. ''You have to give them credit, they were running the football at will. I've always been taught one thing. If you can run the football, you can throw the football. We left a lot of holes out there.''
The highlight for defending SWAC champion Grambling was its famous band, which got standing ovations from the crowd of 45,112 fans before, during and after an up-tempo halftime performance.
D.J. Williams, the quarterback and son of the Grambling coach and former Super Bowl MVP, completed only 3 of 9 passes for 14 yards. The Tigers had only 70 total yards on 47 plays.
TCU had 531 yards - 276 passing and 255 rushing.
Grey had five punt returns for 160 yards, breaking TCU's single-season record that had stood since 1947.
TCU, which had a 69-0 win over New Mexico last October, plays its first Big 12 conference game next Saturday at Kansas. The Jayhawks (1-1) lost 25-24 to Rice on Saturday.
''I can't wait to go out there and have our Big 12 game,'' said defensive end Stansly Maponga, the most-experienced Frog with 26 career starts. ''I'm ready for it.''
When TCU took its 24th offensive snap with just more than 3 minutes left in the first half, matching the number of plays by Grambling at that time, the Frogs were already up 42-0 and were up 293 to 31 in total yards.
''The most important this is we came in at halftime, I didn't want to see any quit,'' coach Williams said. ''I thought they came back in the second half and played hard.''