FORT WORTH, Texas — TCU has been to Texas Tech only once since the old Southwest Conference disbanded.
And what a strange game it was nine years ago. The Horned Frogs went from a three-touchdown lead to the most lopsided loss in coach Gary Patterson’s 13 seasons.
“Well, I don’t talk about it,” Patterson said Tuesday. “You know, that 2004 year was the only year we didn’t go to a bowl game.”
The 24th-ranked Horned Frogs (1-1) return to Lubbock for the first time as a Big 12 member when they play Texas Tech (2-0) on Thursday night in the conference opener for both teams.
In that 2004 game, TCU jumped to a 21-0 lead while holding Texas Tech’s big-play passing attack without a score for its first seven possessions.
“First thing that sticks with me is all the boo birds I was getting,” said Red Raiders co-offensive coordinator Sonny Cumbie, who was Tech’s quarterback that season. “It was bad.”
Texas Tech, coming off a loss at New Mexico at the time, then scored on five consecutive drives on its way to 56 unanswered points in a 70-35 victory. Cumbie completed 30 of 50 passes for 441 yards and four touchdowns.
“Just kind of got it going,” Cumbie said. “That was a fun afternoon for us. It’s kind of how this offense can go at times. If you get things rolling and things can snowball for you.”
TCU was then in its final Conference USA season before going to the Mountain West. The Horned Frogs were left out of Big 12 lineup when the SWC broke up after the 1995 season, but are now in their second Big 12 season.
Texas Tech played a conference game in Fort Worth last October, winning 56-53 in triple overtime after blowing a 10-point lead in the final 2 1/2 minutes of regulation. It was the second time the Red Raiders had played at TCU since 2006.