TCU Horned Frogs football

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TCU Horned Frogs football
2014 TCU Horned Frogs football team
TCU Horned Frogs Logo.svg
First season1896
Athletic directorChris Del Conte
Head coachGary Patterson
13th year, 116–36 (.763)
Home stadiumAmon G. Carter Stadium
Stadium capacity45,000
Stadium surfaceGrass
LocationFort Worth, Texas
ConferenceBig 12
Past conferencesMountain West (2005–2011)
C-USA (2001–2004)
WAC (1996–2000)
SWC (1923–1995)
TIAA (1914–1920)
All-time record605–465–15 (.565)
Postseason bowl record13–15–1 (.466)
Claimed national titles2 (1935,1938)[1]
Conference titles18
Heisman winners1
Consensus All-Americans16[2][3]

Purple, Black, and White

Fight songTCU Fight
MascotSuper Frog
RivalriesBaylor Bears
SMU Mustangs
Texas Tech Red Raiders
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TCU Horned Frogs football
2014 TCU Horned Frogs football team
TCU Horned Frogs Logo.svg
First season1896
Athletic directorChris Del Conte
Head coachGary Patterson
13th year, 116–36 (.763)
Home stadiumAmon G. Carter Stadium
Stadium capacity45,000
Stadium surfaceGrass
LocationFort Worth, Texas
ConferenceBig 12
Past conferencesMountain West (2005–2011)
C-USA (2001–2004)
WAC (1996–2000)
SWC (1923–1995)
TIAA (1914–1920)
All-time record605–465–15 (.565)
Postseason bowl record13–15–1 (.466)
Claimed national titles2 (1935,1938)[1]
Conference titles18
Heisman winners1
Consensus All-Americans16[2][3]

Purple, Black, and White

Fight songTCU Fight
MascotSuper Frog
RivalriesBaylor Bears
SMU Mustangs
Texas Tech Red Raiders

The TCU Horned Frogs football team is the intercollegiate football team of Texas Christian University (TCU). The Horned Frogs compete in Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), the highest level of intercollegiate athletics sanctioned by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in the United States.

Since 2012, the Horned Frogs have been a member of the Big 12 Conference, and were previously members of the Mountain West Conference (MWC), Western Athletic Conference (WAC), Conference USA (C-USA), Southwest Conference (SWC), and Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association (TIAA).

TCU began playing football in 1896 and claims national championships in 1935 and 1938. TCU has one Heisman Trophy winner, Davey O'Brien, and has had seven former players inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. The Horned Frogs play their home games in Amon G. Carter Stadium, which is located on campus in Fort Worth.


Early Years (1896–1922)[edit]

TCU's first year of football started on December 7, 1896, when it still went by the name AddRan Male & Female College. TCU won its first game ever played by beating Toby's Business College to the score of 8–6, apparently not having to use any substitutes. TCU finished its first ever season with a record of 12–0–0. [clarification needed][4]

Prior to joining the Southwest Conference in 1923, TCU amassed a record of 165–15–0. In 1912, TCU went 8–1–0 and scored 230 points while only allowing 53 points the whole season.

In 1920, TCU won its first conference title as a member of the Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association (TIAA). The Horned Frogs' 9–1–0 record earned them a spot in the Fort Worth Classic, also known as the Dixie Bowl, against Centre College. Although the game was played in Fort Worth, Centre won the game 63–7.[5]

Early Southwest Conference years (1923–1933)[edit]

In 1923, TCU endured a 5-game winning streak during its first year in the SWC, but it earned a 2–1–0 conference record and a 5–4–0 overall record. One loss that year was a 40–21 decision against TCU's emerging rival, the SMU Mustangs, who went 9–0 en route to a conference championship.[6] The next year, TCU finished second place in the conference with a 5–1 SWC record and another 5–2 overall record.[7]

After two great seasons, the Horned Frogs righted the ship. Prior to 1923 TCU had had a revolving door of coaches, with no coaching the football for more than two years. Following entrance to the SWC, the school established a high degree of stability, employing just four coaches over the next 43 years, and would not hit last place again until 1953.[5] Under those four coaches (Bell, Schmidt, Meyer, and Martin, the Frogs accumulated a record of 262–165–30.

Matty Bell, who began coaching the Frogs in 1923, had his best year in 1928, his last year as coach. That year's only losses came at home 7–6 to the Baylor Bears and to Texas by a score of 6–0. That year the Frogs finished in second place in the conference at 8–2–0 overall and 3–2 in conference play.[8]

The 1929 season saw the arrival of Coach Francis Schmidt and TCU's first SWC title. The title was won in the last game of the year on November 30, 1929 against SMU. Coming into the game TCU led SMU in the conference standings. TCU had 4 wins, while SMU's conference record was 3–0–1. Since this was the last conference game of the year for both teams, TCU could win its first SWC title with a win or a tie. The first half of the game was scoreless, but in the third quarter Weldon "Speedy" Mason tacked on 40 yards to a 16-yard pass from SMU quarterback Bob Gilbert. After the extra point, the Mustangs led 7–0. TCU would not score until its second time on the SMU] 1-yard line in the fourth quarter. That is when TCU quarterback Howard Grubbs ran behind All-SWC fullback Harlos Green and Mike Brumbelow for the game-tying score. The Frogs left plenty of time on the clock for SMU to answer their score, but Grubbs, now playing defense, intercepted Gilbert's pass. TCU then ran the clock out to force the tie and to win its first SWC title.[9]

The Dutch Meyer era (1934–1952)[edit]

1935 began the first year for TCU coach Dutch Meyer. That year TCU and SMU again met to decide not only the SWC title but the first trip to the Rose Bowl for a team from the SWC. Grantland Rice of the New York Sun called it the "Game of the Century" and reported the following:

In a TCU Stadium that seated 30,000 spectators, over 36,000 wildly excited Texans and visitors from every corner of the map packed, jammed, and fought their way into every square foot of standing and seating space to see one of the greatest football games ever played…this tense, keyed up crowd even leaped the wire fences from the top of automobiles…"[10]

SMU scored the first 14 points of the game. TCU, led by All-American quarterback Sammy Baugh, tied the game at the beginning of the fourth quarter. Then, with seven minutes left in the game SMU, on a 4th and 4 on the Frogs' 37 yard-line, lined up to punt. Quarterback Bob Finley threw a 50-yard pass to running back Bobby Wilson who made what is described as a "jumping, twisting catch that swept him over the line for the touchdown."[10] TCU would lose the game 20–14, but would be invited to play the LSU Tigers in the 1936 Sugar Bowl, where the Frogs would be victorious 3–2 at messy and muddy Tulane Stadium.[11]

Even with the loss to SMU, who later lost to Stanford in the 1936 Rose Bowl, TCU claims 1935 as a national championship year. Dan Jenkins states that one of the first statistical national polls was created by Frank G. Dickinson in 1924. By 1935 there were several other polls, and "…only one of them was big and caught on big and rivaled Dickinson. This was the Paul O. Williamson System out of New Orleans. It quickly gained nation-wide respect and a large syndicated circulation."[12] The Williamson System awarded TCU a shared championship with LSU in 1935, the year before the first sportswriter poll by the Associated Press. The Dickinson poll awarded SMU the national title, and several smaller polls designated the University of Minnesota and Princeton University as their champions[13]

Meyer led TCU to a win in the inaugural Cotton Bowl Classic in 1937. A year later, TCU would go undefeated in 1938 behind TCU's only Heisman Trophy winner—quarterback Davey O'Brien. That year the Frogs' closest game came against the University of Arkansas where they beat the Razorbacks 21–14 in Fort Worth. They were invited to the 1939 Sugar Bowl and beat the Carnegie Tech Tartans from Pittsburgh by a score of 15–7 in front of more than 50,000 spectators.[14]

Meyer coached TCU from 1934 to 1952, compiling a record of 109-79-13.[15] He also won seven Southwest Conference titles. During Meyer's tenure, TCU played in the first nationally televised regular season game against Kansas.

The Abe Martin era (1953–1966)[edit]

When Dutch Meyer retired, his backfield assistant, Abe Martin, became head coach at TCU. One of his three tries at a SWC title came in 1958. The Frogs only losses were to Iowa by a score of 0–17 and at #18 SMU, 13–20.[16] The 1958 season ended in a scoreless tie against the Air Force Falcons in the 1959 Cotton Bowl Classic. Martin-led TCU teams amassed a 4–1–1 record in bowl games. The lone win came in the 1957 Cotton Bowl Classic against a Jim Brown-led Syracuse team in front of 68,000 spectators.[17] A blocked extra-point attempt was the difference in the game and allowed the Horned Frogs to win 28–27.[citation needed]

Pittman/F.A. Dry Era (1967–1982)[edit]

After TCU won the 1959 SWC championship, the Horned Frogs did not earn another share of the conference title for twenty years. During this time, TCU played the role of the underdog. In 1961, Bill Van Fleet of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram called the Horned Frogs' 6–0 win at then-No. 1 Texas, "the season's greatest upset of the year."[18] In 1965, TCU traveled to El Paso to play in the Sun Bowl against UTEP; the Frogs lost[19] 13–12. The state of football at TCU eventually declined and in the 1980s to 1983 the Frogs never won more than two games in three seasons.

Jim Wacker (1983–1991) and NCAA Probation[edit]

TCU would have a successful year in 1984 under coach Jim Wacker. That year TCU leaned on All-American running back Kenneth Davis. The Frogs would be invited to the Bluebonnet Bowl in Houston for their bowl invitation in 1984 to play the West Virginia Mountaineers. The Frogs would lose against the Mountaineers 31–14. TCU wouldn't attend another bowl game until the 1994 Independence Bowl in Shreveport, Louisiana, which they lost, 20–10, to the Virginia Cavaliers.

In 1986, the NCAA placed TCU on three-year probation.[20] They found that 6 boosters provided football recruits and football players with cash and other forms of payment. The final penalty of the NCAA was to ban TCU from post-season play for one season, a forfeiture of TV revenue for the 1983 and 1984 seasons, only 10 scholarships for the 1987–88 academic year and only 15 scholarships for the 1988–89 season. The NCAA said it would have given TCU a harsher penalty: a three-year ban from postseason play, a three-year television appearance ban and no new scholarships for two years.[20] In the NCAA's public release they imposed a reduced penalty because TCU self-reported the violations, suspended the players in question, fully cooperated with the enforcement committee and presented a lack of previous infractions.[20]

The Pat Sullivan era (1992–1997)[edit]

In 1992, TCU hired Pat Sullivan, the 1971 Heisman Trophy winner from Auburn, as head coach. His tenure at TCU was plagued with inconsistency, but marked the beginning of the new TCU renaissance.

In 1992, his first year as head coach, Sullivan introduced a new arched TCU logo. This change to the uniforms was part of a broader plan by Sullivan and the school to replace the expectation of losing with a new look and attitude. Since its introduction the arched TCU has become the preferred and most popular of the school's logos.

In 1992 Sullivan's team finished 2-8-1, but one of their victories was a 28-14 triumph over the Texas Longhorns, which was a major accomplishment for the program at that time.

The 1993 team continued to show signs of improvement, finishing 4-7.

1994 was Sullivan's best year. In the final game of that season, Sullivan led TCU to a 24-17 victory over Texas Tech before a crowd of 43,000 at Amon Carter Stadium. That victory propelled the Frogs to a 7-5 record and a share of the Southwest Conference title. It was the first the Southwest Conference title for TCU since 1959.

After 1994, the team regressed: the Frogs went 6-5 in 1995, the last year of the Southwest Conference. TCU struggled even more during Sullivan's final two seasons, when the team competed in the Western Athletic Conference. They finished 4-7 in 1996, and a disastrous 1-10 campaign in 1997 led to Sullivan's firing.

One of Coach Sullivan's greatest contributions to TCU was the recruitment of future NFL star running back LaDainian Tomlinson to Fort Worth.

Dennis Franchione (1998–2000)[edit]

Under Dennis Franchione, and with the help of Tomlinson, TCU defeated the USC Trojans in the 1998 Sun Bowl. In the three years Coach Franchione was at TCU, his bowl record was 2–0 and he accumulated three WAC Championships. Franchione coached the entire 2000 regular season, but left for the head coaching position at the University of Alabama before the 2000 Mobile Alabama Bowl.

The Gary Patterson era (2000–present)[edit]

Defensive Coordinator Gary Patterson took over as head coach for the bowl game in 2000. In 2001 TCU left the WAC for Conference USA (C-USA). TCU would only stay in C-USA for four years before accepting an invitation to join the newly formed Mountain West Conference (MWC).

Patterson led the Horned Frogs to five conference championships. In 2002, TCU shared the C-USA title with Cincinnati. In 2005, TCU won the MWC title their first year in the league, and the Frogs claimed additional conference crowns in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Patterson has had a winning season every year except 2004 and 2013, and TCU has gone to a bowl game every year except 2004 and 2013.

In the 2005 Houston Bowl, played at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas, the Horned Frogs defeated the Iowa State Cyclones by a score of 27–24.

In the 2006 Poinsettia Bowl TCU defeated the Northern Illinois Huskies 37–7.

In 2007, the Horned Frogs returned to play in the 2007 Texas Bowl, a revival of the old Houston Bowl, and defeated the University of Houston Cougars, 20–13.

In a return to the Poinsettia Bowl in 2008 the #11 Frogs defeated unbeaten #9 Boise State 17–16. Boise State was the second to last unbeaten team in the nation in 2008 besides the Utah Utes. TCU's Poinsettia Bowl victory helped them finish the 2008 season ranked #7 in the country.

In 2009, TCU again attained national prominence with its second undefeated regular season (12–0) since Dutch Meyer led the Frogs to perfection in 1938. They lost in the 2010 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, 17–10, to the Boise State Broncos, on January 4, 2010—their first major-bowl appearance since the 1959 Cotton Bowl.

In the following year, the Horned Frogs capped their second consecutive perfect regular season with a win in their first Rose Bowl, a 21–19 victory over Big Ten co-champion Wisconsin on New Year's Day, 2011. This capped off only the second undefeated and untied season in school history.

After going 11-2 and winning the Mountain West title again in 2011, the Horned Frogs played Louisiana Tech in the Poinsettia Bowl. TCU won 31-24 in a somewhat lackluster performance after narrowly (and somewhat controversially) missing their third BCS Bowl bid in a row. TCU finished 16th in the final BCS rankings, two slots below the cutoff for a non-AQ team to get a BCS bid. The win allowed Patterson to tie Meyer as the winningest coach in TCU history. On October 10, 2011, the TCU Board of Trustees approved an invitation to join the Big 12 Conference, and entered that conference on July 1, 2012. The move to the Big 12 is a return "home" in a sense for the Horned Frogs, as they renew many of their in-state rivalries from the old Southwest Conference. Before the move to the Big 12, the Horned Frogs had been reckoned as one of the closest things to a major football power in a mid-major conference.

Amon G. Carter Stadium, the Horned Frogs' home field since 1929, concluded large renovations prior to the 2012 season. It features a new press box, suites, club seats and improved fan amenities in many areas – new and more comfortable seating, wider concourses, new and improved restrooms and concessions areas, handicap accessible accommodations, elevators and escalators to move patrons among levels, and new lighting. The stadium was used during the 2011 season while being renovated.[21]

The Horned Frogs played their first game in the renovated stadium on September 8, 2012 and routed Grambling 56-0. The win was also Patterson's 110th win with the Horned Frogs, making him the winningest coach in TCU history.

The Horned Frogs returned to national prominence in 2014, after they finished the 2013 season with a disappointing 4-8 record. The Horned Frogs started with a 4-0 record to begin the year, with impressive wins over Minnesota and #4 ranked Oklahoma. After the upset of Oklahoma, the Horned Frogs rose to the #9 ranking going into their October 11 meeting with then #5 ranked Baylor. With approximately 11 minutes remaining in the game, TCU had a commanding 58-37 lead over the Bears, but Baylor engineered one of the greatest comebacks in NCAA history by scoring 24 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to defeat the Horned Frogs, 61-58. The Baylor game would be the lone loss for TCU in 2014, as they would rally to win their remaining seven games behind the leadership of their Heisman Trophy finalist quarterback, Trevone Boykin. The Horned Frogs began to emerge as a National Championship contender after their convincing 41-20 win over then #7 ranked Kansas State. Going into the final week of the regular season, TCU was ranked #3 in the newly formed College Football Playoff poll, which coincided with the new College Football Playoff system, whose format selects the Top 4 teams in the rankings at the end of the season to participate in a four team playoff system to decide a National Champion. TCU soundly defeated Iowa State in their final regular season game to finish the 2014 season with an 11-1 record. The Horned Frogs also claimed a share of the Big 12 Conference Championship along with Baylor. On December 7, 2014, the final College Football Playoff rankings were released, despite the Horned Frogs' impressive resume, they dropped to the #6 ranking in the poll, abruptly ending the Horned Frogs' National Championship hopes. TCU decimated #9 Ole Miss/Mississippi, 42-3 in the Peach Bowl.[22]

Home Stadium[edit]

The Horned Frogs have played their home football games at Amon G. Carter Stadium, located on the campus of TCU, since 1930.

Named for the famous Fort Worth newspaper magnate who made the original donation to finance the stadium, Amon G. Carter Stadium opened in 1930 with an original seating capacity of 22,000. The first game played in the stadium was in October, a 70-6 TCU victory over the Arkansas Razorbacks. Renovations in 1947 and 1955 added additional seating and an upper deck, which increased capacity to roughly 45,000. The stadium remained in this configuration until 2010, when a major renovation reduced the entire stadium to its original lower bowl, before erecting a new stadium on the same site. The design of the current Amon Carter stadium was influenced heavily by the surrounding architecture of Fort Worth, with emphasis on Art Deco style. The Frogs opened the new stadium in time for the 2012 season.

Amon G. Carter stadium features a natural grass field and a seating capacity of roughly 45,000. Standing-room only concourses allow capacity to exceed this number when ticket demand exceeds seating availability. The record attendance is 50,307 which took place on November 14, 2009 when the Frogs played the then No. 16 ranked Utah Utes. The final score was a whopping 55-28 in favor of the Frogs. The 2012-2012 renovation added a 54ft. video board over the North endzone, with a smaller videoboard located in the Southeast corner.

Before Amon G. Carter Stadium, the Horned Frogs played their home games on campus at Clark Field, located at the current site of Mary Couts Burnett Library.



TCU's school colors are purple and white. Historically, black has also featured prominently in the school's uniforms. As early as 1935 the football team wore black leather helmets with a purple stripe, or occasionally purple helmets with a black stripe. Jerseys were purple with white numbers were, worn with beige or khaki pants.

Beginning with the introduction of plastic helmets in the 1946 TCU dropped black from their uniforms and introduced a new purple helmet with a white stripe. The team's pants remained khaki colored until the 1950s, when they were changed to white.

During this period the exact shade of TCU purple varied wildly depending on the uniforms worn, though a royal purple was most common. In 1971 the school hired Jim Pittman as its head coach. Pittman had been an assistant at the University of Texas when the Longhorns had changed their color from orange to burnt orange, and wanted to do something similar at TCU. Pittman chose to introduce a very pale shade of lilac into the TCU uniforms, and the team quickly became known as the "Lavender Hill Mob." These uniforms are often regarded as the worst in TCU's history. TCU returned to a royal purple in 1974 following Pittman's premature and tragic death on the sidelines.

Beginning in 1998, TCU began once again incorporating black into the uniforms. The practice was started by Coach Franchione, who introduced a new helmet with black facemask, and purple jerseys with black pants. In 2012 the school debuted helmets which featured a black stripe in addition to the black facemask, reflecting the helmets worn during the TCU championship years of the 1930s.


TCU was the last school in college football to wear leather helmets, switching to hard plastic helmets in 1946. Prior to 1946 the TCU football team wore either black helmets with a purple stripe, or purple helmets with a black stripe. Since the introduction of plastic TCU helmet has gone through a number of designs.

In the 1950s TCU wore a purple helmet with white stripe down the middle. In 1954 a gray facemask was introduced, and in 1958 white numbers were added to the sides of the helmet.

In 1965 a new helmet was introduced featuring a purple shell and a white stylized Horned Frog on the side. A different, fiercer Horned Frog design was used for the 1966 helmets, featuring just the Frog's head. In 1967 the school used a pattern similar to that of Texas A&M.

In 1977 the school introduced a "Flying TCU" logo, which remained on the helmets until 1991, and remains popular with the school and especially students today. In 1992 Head Coach Pat Sullivan introduced an arched TCU design, which eventually became the official logo of the school. This logo has been featured on every TCU helmet, with slight variations, ever since.

Championships and Bowl Games[edit]

National Championships (2)[edit]

cellpadding="1" border="1" cellspacing="0" style="width:80%;"
1935Dutch MeyerWilliamson Poll12–1Sugar BowlTCU 3, LSU 2
1938Dutch MeyerAP Poll11–0Sugar BowlTCU 15, Carnegie Mellon 7
Total national championships:2

TCU holds two national championships in football, one from 1935 and the other from 1938. In 1935, TCU spent most of the season ranked No. 1 in the country before losing a regular season game to then No. 2 ranked SMU in the "Game of the Century." SMU went on to lose to Stanford in the Rose Bowl, while TCU went on to beat LSU in the Sugar Bowl. Since the Associated Press and wire services didn't award national championships until 1936, TCU recognizes a statistical poll created by Paul O. Williamson who awarded his national title to LSU and TCU for the 1935 season. The 1938 team was undefeated and was the consensus #1 team in the Associated Press Poll.

Conference Championships (18)[edit]

TCU has won a combined 18 conference championships in 5 different conferences

1920TIAAW. L. Driver9–1–0
1929Southwest ConferenceFrancis Schmidt9–0–1
1932Southwest ConferenceFrancis Schmidt10–0–1
1938Southwest ConferenceDutch Meyer11–0–0
1944Southwest ConferenceDutch Meyer8–3–0
1951Southwest ConferenceDutch Meyer6–5–0
1955Southwest ConferenceAbe Martin9–2–0
1958Southwest ConferenceAbe Martin8–2–1
1959 §Southwest ConferenceAbe Martin8–3–0
1994 §Southwest ConferencePat Sullivan7–5–0
1999 §Western Athletic ConferenceDennis Franchione8–4
2000 §Western Athletic ConferenceDennis Franchione10–2
2002 §Conference USAGary Patterson11–2
2005Mountain West ConferenceGary Patterson11–1
2009Mountain West ConferenceGary Patterson12–1
2010Mountain West ConferenceGary Patterson13–0
2011Mountain West ConferenceGary Patterson11–2
2014 §Big 12 ConferenceGary Patterson12–1
Total conference championships:18

§ – Conference co-champions

  • Note that the 1920 TIAA Championship was disputed between TCU and Austin College. Although TCU defeated the Kangaroos 9–7 on October 9, 1920, one of the TCU players, Allen Rowson, was declared ineligible after the 1920 season due to transfer rules.

Conference affiliations[edit]

Bowl games[edit]

The 2010 Fiesta Bowl with Boise State against TCU

In 2014, TCU became just the fourth program in history to have competed in all six of the modern day CFP bowls (Rose, Fiesta, Sugar, Cotton, Peach and Orange). TCU joined Florida State University, Miami(Fl) and the University of Tennessee to earn this distinction. TCU has a combined 6-5-1 record in those bowls, notching wins in all but the Fiesta and Orange.

January 1, 1921Fort Worth ClassicLCentre College763
January 1, 1936Sugar BowlWLSU32
January 1, 1937Cotton Bowl ClassicWMarquette166
January 2, 1939Sugar BowlWCarnegie Tech157
January 1, 1942Orange BowlLGeorgia2640
January 1, 1945Cotton Bowl ClassicLOklahoma State034
January 1, 1948Delta BowlLMississippi913
January 1, 1952Cotton Bowl ClassicLKentucky720
January 2, 1956Cotton Bowl ClassicLMississippi1314
January 1, 1957Cotton Bowl ClassicWSyracuse2827
January 1, 1959Cotton Bowl ClassicTAir Force00
December 19, 1959Bluebonnet BowlLClemson723
December 31, 1965Sun BowlLUTEP1213
December 31, 1984Bluebonnet BowlLWest Virginia1431
December 28, 1994Independence BowlLVirginia1020
December 31, 1998Sun BowlWUSC2819
December 22, 1999Mobile Alabama BowlWEast Carolina2814
December 20, 2000Mobile Alabama BowlLSouthern Miss2128
December 28, BowlLTexas A&M928
December 31, 2002Liberty BowlWColorado State173
December 23, 2003Fort Worth BowlLBoise State3134
December 31, 2005Houston BowlWIowa State2724
December 19, 2006Poinsettia BowlWNIU377
December 28, 2007Texas BowlWHouston2013
December 23, 2008Poinsettia BowlWBoise State1716
January 4, 2010Fiesta Bowl*LBoise State1017
January 1, 2011Rose Bowl*WWisconsin2119
December 21, 2011Poinsettia BowlWLouisiana Tech3124
December 29, 2012Buffalo Wild Wings BowlLMichigan State1617
December 31, 2014Peach Bowl**WOle Miss423
Total30 bowl games14–15–1

* denotes BCS game. ** denotes New Year's Six Bowl game.

Top 25 Finishes[edit]

Individual Awards[edit]

Retired numbers[edit]

National Awards[edit]

YearRecordAP PollUPI/Coaches Poll
193512-1--Shared National Championship (w LSU)
193811-01Consensus National Championship

Davey O'Brien, 1938

Sammy Baugh, 4th in 1936
Jim Swink, 2nd in 1955
Kenneth Davis, 5th in 1984
LaDainian Tomlinson, 4th in 2000
Trevone Boykin, 4th in 2014

Davey O'Brien, 1938

LaDainian Tomlinson, 2000

Jake Kirkpatrick, 2010

Jerry Hughes, 2009

Jerry Hughes, 2009

Michael Reeder, 1995

  • Rudy Award
    (Awarded to the Div I football player than best exemplifies
    Character, Courage, Contribution and Commitment)

Drew Combs, 2008

LaDainian Tomlinson, 2000

Coaching Awards[edit]

College Football Hall of Fame inductees[edit]

The following Horned Frogs have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame:

AP 1st-Team All-Americans[edit]

Note: Unless otherwise indicated, all hometowns are in Texas.

YearPositionJersey #NameHometown
1927E31Rags MatthewsFort Worth
1929G44Mike BrumbelowJacksboro
1930HB5Cy LelandLubbock
1932G44Johnny VaughtFort Worth
1934C22Darrell LesterJacksboro
1935C22Darrell LesterJacksboro
1935QB45Sammy BaughSweetwater
1936QB45Sammy BaughSweetwater
1937QB8Davey O'BrienDallas
1937T22I. B. HaleDallas
1937C48Ki AldrichTemple
1938QB8Davey O'BrienDallas
1938T22I. B. HaleDallas
1938C48Ki AldrichTemple
1942T71Derrell PalmerAlbany
1944T32Clyde FlowersPerryton
1949QB43Lindy BerryWichita Falls
1951C34Keith FlowersPerryton
1951QB49Ray McKownDumas
1951T77Doug ConawayHillsboro
1955HB23Jim SwinkRusk
1955C54Hugh PittsDumas
1956T75Norman HamiltonVanderbilt
1956HB23Jim SwinkRusk
1958T75Don FloydMidlothian
1958FB20Jack SpikesSnyder
1960T72Bob LillyThrockmorton
1963FB38Tommy CrutcherMcKinney
1981WR7Stanley WashingtonDallas
1984RB36Kenneth DavisTemple
1991TE86Kelly BlackwellRichland Hills
1995K17Michael ReederSulphur, LA
2000RB5LaDainian TomlinsonWaco
2002LB44LaMarcus McDonaldWaco
2003K9Nick BrowneGarland
2005KR17Cory RodgersHouston
2009DE98Jerry HughesSugar Land
2010S3Tejay JohnsonGarland


Head coaches[edit]

Gary Patterson, current head coach of the TCU Horned Frogs.
1897Joe Field310.750
1898James Morrison131.300
1902H. E. Hildebrand051.083
1904C.E. Cronk141.250
19051907E.J. Hyde10112.478
19081909J.R. Langley1151.676
1910Kemp Lewis261.278
1911Henry W. Lever450.444
1912W.T. Stewart810.889
1913Fred Cahoon312.667
1914S. A. Boles442.500
1915E. Y. Freeland450.444
19161917Milton Daniel1441.763
1918E.M. Tipton440.500
1919T.E.D. Hackney170.125
19201921W. L. Driver1541.775
1922John McKnight253.350
19231928Matty Bell33175.645
19291933Francis Schmidt4565.848
19341952Dutch Meyer1097913.575
19531966Abe Martin74647.534
19671970Fred Taylor15251.378
1971Jim Pittman331.500
19711973Billy Tohill11150.423
19741976Jim Shofner2310.061
19771982F. A. Dry12513.205
19831991Jim Wacker40582.410
19921997Pat Sullivan24421.366
19982000Dennis Franchione25100.714
2000– presentGary Patterson131450.744

Current coaching staff[edit]

Gary PattersonHead Coach
Jarrett AndersonOffensive Line Coach
Dick BumpasDefensive Coordinator / Defensive Line
Rusty BurnsOutside Receivers
Demontie CrossLinebackers
Sonny CumbieCo-Offensive Coordinator / Quarterbacks Coach
Zarnell FitchDirector of High School Relations
Chad GlasgowSafeties
Matt LewisDirector of Football Operations
Curtis LuperRunning Backs
Doug MeachamCo-Offensive Coordinator / Inside Wide Receivers
Dominique NevilleAsst Director of Football Operations
Kenny PerryCornerbacks Coach
Dan SharpSpecial Teams / Dir Player Personnel
Jake BrownGraduate Assistant - Offense
David GableAssociate Director of Sports Medicine
Paul GonzalesGraduate Assistant - Defense
Bryson OliverGraduate Assistant - Offense
Don SommerHead strength and conditioning coach
Jason TeagueGraduate Assistant - Defense
Jeremy ModkinsDefensive Analyst
Matt ParkerAssistant strength and conditioning coach


Texas Christian University Horned Frogs Football team recruiting rankings:




Top Commit


4423Kyle Hicks


3824Griffin Gilbert


2825Ladarius Brown


6318Sam Carter


5420Malcolm Williams


11415Walker Dille


7324Jeremy Kerley


7319Wayne Daniels


6321Corderra Hunter


7021Quincy Butler


6620James Battle


6110Robert Merrill


Because TCU was a member of the Southwest Conference for 72 years, rivalries remain with many of the schools that once participated in that conference. Most of former Southwest Conference members are located within the state of Texas.

Southern Methodist University[edit]

This rivalry is prominent for both schools, as both are located in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and were long-time members of the SWC before its dissolution. TCU leads the football series with SMU, 45–40-7.[23] The SMU - TCU football game is called "The Battle for the Iron Skillet", with the winning team gaining possession of a ceremonial iron skillet. Since 1915, when SMU was founded and began football competition, the game has not been played in only three years when both fielded football teams — 1919, 1920 and 2006. The schools are scheduled to compete through at least 2016. Because they are no longer members of the same conference, annual meetings may or may not be scheduled after 2016.

Baylor University[edit]

TCU trails with Baylor at 51–52-7 in one of the oldest rivalries in college football. This rivalry harkens back to 1899 in the early days of TCU football when TCU was known as AddRan Christian University. When the series started, TCU (then AddRan) and Baylor were both located in Waco, Texas. One well-remembered incident in the rivalry occurred in 1971. TCU coach Jim Pittman collapsed and died on the sideline during the 1971 TCU at Baylor football game, the only time in collegiate history that a coach died while a game was in the progress of being played. TCU-Baylor is one of the most played rivalries in all of NCAA College Football despite a near 16-year break after the collapse of the Southwest Conference in 1995. Some TCU fans have long held a deep resentment resulting from Baylor being asked to take a spot in the new Big 12 Conference ahead of TCU, in 1996. The two schools concluded a home-and-home series in 2007, and have continued their rivalry in Fort Worth in 2010 and Waco in 2011. TCU and Baylor have returned to being conference mates in the Big 12 with yearly football games scheduled. In 2013 and 2014, TCU lost to Baylor by 3 both times, 41-38 in 2013 and 61-58 in 2014, and in 2014 lead 58-37 in the last 10 minutes, and this loss proved to kill TCU National Championship hopes.

Texas Tech University[edit]

The football series dates back to 1926, 23–30–3.[24] TCU was the first Southwest Conference team to play Texas Tech. The Texas Tech University Goin' Band from Raiderland was the first college marching band to travel to an away game when Will Rogers financed their trip to accompany the Red Raiders to Fort Worth.[25][26]

After the collapse of the Southwest Conference, Texas Tech was the first of the schools that joined the Big 12 Conference in 1996 to schedule a non-conference game with TCU. This first post-Southwest Conference game between TCU and its former conference mate was played in the regular season in 2004.

Prior to Texas Tech joining the SWC, a traveling trophy was exchanged between the Horned Frogs and Red Raiders. The trophy was of a miniature saddle and the game between the teams was dubbed "The West Texas Championship."[27] TCU and Texas Tech return to being conference mates, competing in football annually, in 2012. In 2014, 109 points combined was put up, in a 82-27 rout by TCU.

Other rivalries[edit]

Former SWC rivals include Houston, Rice, Arkansas, and Texas A&M. While in the C-USA, TCU engaged in new rivalries with Louisville and Southern Miss. In 2005, after joining (and winning) the Mountain West, TCU immediately started new rivalries with Utah and BYU, as they were the conference's top two programs. Because the Mountain West wasn't an automatic qualifier in the BCS, these 3 teams were always battling for an At-Large spot in one of the 4 BCS Bowls. Boise State was also in contention for one of the At-Large BCS spots, which led to a rivalry between TCU and Boise St. In 2011, after splitting bowl games in the 2008 and 2009 seasons (and Utah and BYU defecting to the Pac-12 and Independence/WCC, respectively), Boise State moved over from the WAC to join TCU in the Mountain West. Because Boise State replaced Utah in the conference schedule, the TCU-BSU game was supposed to be played in Ft. Worth, but as TCU was leaving for the Big East in 2012, the conference voted to have the game take place in Boise; this led to even more tension between the two schools. In fall 2010, after announcing intentions of moving to the Big East in 2012, fans of TCU and West Virginia, the class of the Big East, began debating which team would win the conference during their first season together, the "unproven" BCS Buster (TCU) or the established Big East power (WVU). In fall 2011, after Texas A&M and Missouri announced their intentions of moving to the SEC for 2012, TCU and West Virginia accepted invitations to join the Big 12 in that year. This only furthered the TCU-WVU debate, which has led to a small new rivalry. Also, with TCU replacing Texas A&M in the Big 12, their former rivalry sparked back up within the state through recruiting, press, and the fans, although not on the field.

All-time Records versus Rivals[edit]

TeamTraveling trophyGames PlayedTCU WinTCU LossTiesWin %First MeetingLast MeetingNext scheduled Meeting
Baylor Bears11051527.50018992014 lost 58-612015 @TCU
SMU MustangsIron Skillet9447407.53719152014 won 56-02015 @ TCU
Texas A&M Aggies9229567.35318972001 lost 9-28
Texas Longhorns8421621.25618972013 lost 7-302014 @Texas
Rice Owls7941353.53819142000 won 37-0
Arkansas Razorbacks6823432.35319201991 lost 21-222016 @ TCU
Texas Tech Red RaidersSaddle Trophy5623303.43819262014 won 82-272015 @Texas Tech
Houston Cougars2512130.48019762007 won 20-13
BYU Cougars11650.54519872011 won 38-28
Utah Utes8350.37519962010 won 47-7
Boise State Broncos4220.50020032011 won 36-35

Future non-conference opponents[edit]

TCU has released a partial list of non-conference opponents for the near future:[28] [29]

vs SMUat SMUvs SMUvs Ohio Stateat Ohio Stateat Californiavs California
vs Stephen F. Austinvs Arkansasat Arkansasat SMU
at Minnesotavs South Dakota State

Horned Frogs in Professional Football[edit]

LaDainian Tomlinson with the Chargers

Pro Football Hall of Fame inductees[edit]

National Football League Most Valuable Player award[edit]

Super Bowl Most Valuable Player award[edit]

Canadian Football League Most Outstanding Player award[edit]

Grey Cup Most Valuable Player award[edit]

Horned Frogs Currently in the NFL[edit]


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "NCAA Football Award Winners" (PDF). National Collegiate Athletic Association. 2014. pp. 13–18. Retrieved December 19, 2014.
  3. ^ "NCAA FBS Consensus All-America." ESPN. December 15, 2012. Retrieved December 19, 2012.
  4. ^ Jenkins, Dan & Fitzgerald, Francis J., ed. (1996). Greatest Moments in TCU Football. AdCraft Sports Marketing. p. 27. ISBN 1-887761-04-7. 
  5. ^ a b "2006 TCU Football Media Guide" (PDF). 2006. p. 154. Retrieved 2007-05-25. 
  6. ^ " 1923 SWC Standings". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-05-25. 
  7. ^ " 1924 SWC Standings". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-05-25. 
  8. ^ " 1928 SWC Standings". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-05-25. 
  9. ^ Jenkins, Dan & Fitzgerald, Francis J., ed. (1996). Greatest Moments in TCU Football. AdCraft Sports Marketing. p. 33. ISBN 1-887761-04-7. 
  10. ^ a b Jenkins, Dan & Fitzgerald, Francis J., ed. (1996). Greatest Moments in TCU football. AdCraft Sports Marketing. p. 55. ISBN 1-887761-04-7. 
  11. ^ "1936 Game Recap". 
  12. ^ Jenkins, Dan & Fitzgerald, Francis J., ed. (1996). Greatest Moments in TCU Football. AdCraft Sports Marketing. p. 14. ISBN 1-887761-04-7. 
  13. ^ "NCAA D-IA Football Past Champions". Retrieved 2007-05-25. [dead link]
  14. ^ Jenkins, Dan & Fitzgerald, Francis J., ed. (1996). Greatest Moments in TCU Football. AdCraft Sports Marketing. p. 73. ISBN 1-887761-04-7. 
  15. ^ "TCU – News and Events". 
  16. ^ 2006 TCU Football Media Guide p. 150
  17. ^ Jenkins, Dan & Fitzgerald, Francis J., ed. (1996). Greatest Moments in TCU Football. AdCraft Sports Marketing. p. 138. ISBN 1-887761-04-7. 
  18. ^ Jenkins, Dan & Fitzgerald, Francis J., ed. (1996). Greatest Moments in TCU Football. AdCraft Sports Marketing. p. 162. ISBN 1-887761-04-7. 
  19. ^ Sun Bowl History
  20. ^ a b c "Major Infractions Database: Texas Christian University" (Press release). NCAA. May 9, 1986. Retrieved 2007-07-08. 
  21. ^ "Amon G Carter Stadium Redevelopment". Texas Christian University. Retrieved 2011-03-18. 
  22. ^ "TCU lets it all out in rout of Ole Miss". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Retrieved 2014-12-31. 
  23. ^ CFB Data Warehouse Head-to-Head TCU vs. SMU
  24. ^ CFB Data Warehouse Head-to-Head TCU vs. Texas Tech
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^
  28. ^ "TCU Football Future Schedule". Retrieved 2008-12-10. 
  29. ^ "TCU Horned Frogs Football Schedules and Future Schedules". Retrieved 2012-02-25. 

External links[edit]