Chris Low, ESPN Senior Staff Writer 379d

TCU moves to the head of the Big 12 pack

FORT WORTH, Texas -- By now, maybe we should have learned not to sleep on Gary Patterson and his TCU football team coming off a disappointing season.

All the rage in the Big 12 back in August was everybody but the Horned Frogs. They were sort of the forgotten bunch coming off their 6-7 season in 2016. But here we are approaching the middle of October this season, and the Horned Frogs are the Big 12's only unbeaten team, thanks to their 31-24 win over No. 23 West Virginia on Saturday and No. 3 Oklahoma's 38-31 upset loss to Iowa State earlier in the day.

Patterson is now 28-2 coming off three losing seasons at TCU. The Horned Frogs were 11-1 in 2005 (after going 5-6 the season before). They were 12-1 in 2014 (after going 4-8 the year before). And they're 5-0 this season.

TCU, which was unranked in the preseason polls, will almost certainly move up from its No. 8 ranking on Sunday when the new polls are released.

The first half Saturday was anything but a typical Big 12 game, as the two teams combined for just one touchdown -- two teams that entered the game averaging a combined 96.6 points per game. But the second half was as entertaining as the first half was dull. The Horned Frogs built a 17-3 lead, but Will Grier brought the Mountainers (3-2) back with touchdown passes of 64 yards to David Sills and 76 yards to Ka'Raun White to tie the game at 17 apiece.

TCU quarterback Kenny Hill answered by catching a 48-yard touchdown pass from KaVontae Turpin on a gadget play.

That was followed by Sills' second touchdown grab of the game -- a gorgeous catch in the back of the end zone.

But Hill cemented the win for the Horned Frogs by bulling his way into the end zone from the 3 with 2:53 to play.

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