Jalen Reagor scored two touchdowns, including the deciding score on a 37-yard reverse late in the third quarter, and the TCU defense forced three big turnovers as the Horned Frogs outlasted Baylor 16-9 on Saturday afternoon in Waco, Texas, to stay alive for a bowl berth.
The Horned Frogs (5-6, 3-5 in Big 12) have scored just four touchdowns in their past 11 quarters — all of them by Reagor. His two scores, combined with a big game by the TCU defense, were enough for the win on Saturday.
Horned Frogs starting quarterback Michael Collins was forced from the game with a right foot injury early in the first quarter and was replaced by senior Grayson Muehlstein. Muehlstein passed for 137 yards and a touchdown, with the scoring strike going to Reagor early in the second quarter.
Charlie Brewer passed for 163 yards and ran for 54 more yards and a touchdown for Baylor (5-6, 3-5 in Big 12) but also fumbled in the red zone and threw an interception.
TCU, taking advantage of a fumble by the Bears’ John Lovett on the second offensive play of the game, took over at the Baylor 34-yard line and drove 22 yards to a 29-yard field goal by Jonathan Song and a 3-0 lead.
The Bears’ Brewer showed his versatility on the ensuing possession, driving them 80 yards in nine plays, the final one a 7-yard run-and-vault into the end zone for a touchdown. The extra point kick attempt was blocked by TCU’s Julius Lewis, forcing Baylor to settle for a 6-3 lead with 5:11 to play in the first quarter.
B.J. Thompson blocked a punt by Adam Nunez at the end of TCU’s next possession, allowing the Bears to begin at the Horned Frogs 31-yard line. Baylor drove to the TCU 6 before Brewer fumbled on the first play of the second quarter when being hit by Corey Bethley, ending the scoring opportunity.
The Horned Frogs then used the explosiveness of Reagor to regain the lead, as Muehlstein hit the speedy wideout on a bubble screen that he turned into a 65-yard touchdown. Song’s PAT kick was blocked by Thompson, but TCU still owned a 9-6 lead that held up through the remainder of the half.
Baylor tied the score on a 33-yard field goal by Connor Martin at the 6:25 mark of the third quarter after a 10-play, 64-yard drive.
The Horned Frogs responded, and again Reagor was the focal point. On fourth-and-1 from the Baylor 37, and out of the wildcat formation, Reagor took a reverse handoff and sprinted untouched off left tackle for the lead score with 2:02 to play in the third quarter.
TCU returns home next Saturday for a win-and-your-in game against Oklahoma State. Baylor also faces a do-or-die game for bowl eligibility next week against Texas Tech at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
—Field Level Media