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It's a bird, it's a plane, it's a Caleb Williams dart for another completion and another touchdown. Caleb Williams could do no wrong in his first start as an Oklahoma Sooner Saturday night in the Palace on the Prairie as he and the Oklahoma Sooners carved up the TCU Horned Frogs defense like a Thanksgiving Turkey to the tune of a 52-31 OU victory.

Lincoln Riley's scripted first possession was a thing of pure beauty.  After the first play went for a short gain on the ground, each of the ensuing plays would set up the next while putting the TCU defense in unfavorable matchups. Each play would begin with some sort of fake or hesitation, whether it was play-action, rpo, zone read, counter run, starting each play with some type of misdirection kept the TCU defense flat footed and reactionary. Kennedy Brooks would punch it in from 2 yards out, and it would take OU all of seven plays and 2:59 to take the early 7-0 lead. 

With Zach Evans out due to a foot injury, Kendre Miller would get the first two touches to set the Horned Frogs up for a 3rd down with 2 yards to gain for the first down. Giving Miller the ball again to pick up the first down seemed like a good call; however, Coy McMillon would let two Oklahoma defenders fly right by him untouched, one after the other and into the TCU backfield forcing a three and out. OU would march down the field similarly to their first possession, 7 plays for 62 yards ending in a 17-yard TD pass from Williams to Jeremiah Hall lasting 4:24. It was a dream start for Caleb Williams and Lincoln Riley, and it seemed the route was on. 

But on TCU's next possession, Max Duggan and Miller would do their best Lee Corso impersonation, letting their play tell the OU faithful "Not so fast my friends." After Max would move the chains with his legs on a third and long that the Horned Frogs desperately needed, Miller would run the ball for three yards to set up the next play on 2nd and 7:

And the Frogs were right back in it. Unfortunately, Miller would be injured on the play as he tight roped down the sideline for the score. 

After the TCU defense was able to get a stop with OU missing a field goal on the next possession, it seemed momentum was turning towards TCU. Quentin Johnston would haul in a 33-yard pass from Duggan, and the Frogs looked to be rolling. Here is where things got a bit strange. Questions surrounding the health of Miller seemed to place Doug Meacham in a bit of a quagmire with Zach Evans already unavailable. However, with the first quarter coming to an end TCU should have been able to get it's ducks in a row during the break, and that is to say get Emari Demercado and Daimarqua Foster plugged in and continue with the game plan that was working. That did not happen, and with a 3rd and 1 situation at the Oklahoma 29 yard line TCU would inexplicably not get the ball to a running back, resulting in a quarterback run for a 1-yard loss, a time out, and then another quarterback run for no gain to turn the ball over on downs. A turnover by Doug Meacham. 

Luckily for Meacham and Frog fans, the TCU defense would bend but not break on the next series, thanks to Ochaun Mathis:

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His first of two huge sacks on the day. 

Gary Patterson's defense was able to hold the Sooners to a field goal after allowing them to move the ball all the way down to the TCU 2 yard line. It was a huge stand for the TCU defense who were boosted by the returns of Corey Bethley and Jamai Hodge but still without NFL caliber cornerback Noah Daniels. 

Kendre Miller would tough it out on the next series, but it was clear he was playing hurt. Meacham and Duggan would overcome having their top two running backs injured with one of the best drives of the year. Duggan would hit four different receivers while Meacham mixed up the play calling exceptionally well to keep the Sooner defense guessing, resulting in a 14 play, 78 yard drive lasting 6:46 and ending with this:

Quentin Johnston's first of three touchdown catches on the day. Part of a career day that would see him notch career bests in touchdowns, receptions and yards. 


Quentin Johnston's career day: 7 catches for 185 yards and 3 touchdowns


The TCU defense was feeling it at after holding the high powered Sooners offense to three points on their last two possessions, and would have their best series of the game and possibly season, forcing Williams and Riley to punt on a 3 and out with 2:50 left in the half with only a three point lead. What seemed like a prime opportunity for the Horned Frogs to take control of the game would turn out to be a Trojan horse that would bring the Frogs to their knees. Starting the drive on their own 19 yard line with 2:44 left in the half, TCU would hold the ball for a mere minute while going three and out and punting right back to the Sooners with way too much time on the clock. The next 1:25 would seem like an eternity for Frogs fans as Caleb Williams opened the possession with a 28 yard pass to Tennessee transfer running back Eric Gray to immediately put the Sooners in TCU territory at the 48 yard line with just under a minute left. A huge pass interference called on C.J. Ceasar would stop the clock and move the Sooners to the TCU 31 yard line with :38 left before halftime. Caleb Williams, in his first collegiate start, would cap off an excellent two minute drill with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Jadon Haselwood with :20 left to break TCU hearts everywhere. 

When TCU came out of the second half with not only Kendre Miller but also Tre'Vius Hodges Tomlinson hurt and unavailable, and then started with a three and out the route was finally on, and OU would score touchdowns on their next three possessions. 

At the end of the day however TCU fans should probably be feeling more optimistic about their chances going forward than they did before the Oklahoma game, the one game that TCU was never expected to win. That is of course dependent on the injury status on Evans, Miller, THT, Daniels and Duggan through the rest of the season. In the meantime Frog fans can be grateful to have Corey Bethley, Jamai Hodge, and Quentin Johnston back, and enjoy these gems courtesy of QJ1.

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