By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
"This was a special night for TCU," Fiesta Bowl chairman Alan Young said. "We know the excitement that TCU could bring to a BCS bowl game. A lot of people want to see TCU against anybody."
Thanks to a crappy TV deal with Versus and some obscure channel called The Mountain, TCU's games are generally harder to find than Jerry Jones' humility. But after a thorough trashing of the nation's 16th-best team, TCU is demanding accountability. Now 10-0, the Frogs seemed destined for a BCS bowl game. But even at 12-0 and Mountain West Conference champions, they would need unlikely losses from the likes of Alabama, Florida, Texas and maybe even Cincinnati to get a shot to play for a national championship.
Boasted Patterson after the blowout of an elite opponent, "If the nation didn't think this was enough style points, I don't know what is."
Patterson isn't a chest-puffing guy predisposed to braggadocio. But in this era of strength of schedule, style points and public outcry, filibustering for your cause is part of the job description. Won't come natural for a coach who slapped his team with the song "I Won't Back Down" from Tom Petty even though most of his players are clueless as to who in the hell Tom Petty is, but Patterson will indeed push his product.
"I've always said we just need to go out and win games," Patterson said. "But if part of the process is to sell your team, then I'll do what it takes. It'll be an honor and quite an accomplishment just to be in the position of debating whether your team is among the best in the country."
While SMU's task is just commencing, TCU's is almost finished. The Horned Frogs play at Wyoming this Saturday before hosting New Mexico in their regular season finale November 28. TCU hasn't enjoyed an undefeated regular season since 1938.
"The biggest thing is, we've got to finish," Patterson said. "I understand how big this is. I've been here. I beat Oklahoma and then lost the next week to SMU."
Sorry, Mustangs, but you couldn't have picked a worse time to have one of your best teams.