After a 70-35 loss to Texas Tech in Lubbock, special teams remains a concern for TCU coach Gary Patterson.
“I’m not happy with the performance of the special teams, but we’ll learn from it,” Patterson said at the team’s weekly media luncheon.
The special teams allowed three punt returns for more than 20 yards in the game. Two of the returns set up touchdowns that put the Red Raiders in the lead at the start of the third quarter.
“We need to understand that it is going to be a street fight out there every week on special teams,” Patterson said.
Patterson cited numerous missed tackles and allowing Tech receivers to run after the catch as the reason for the loss.
“You have to be accountable. You can’t let them run with it,” Patterson said.
Despite the poor performance, Patterson believes the “sky isn’t falling” on them.
“We have a lot of work ahead of us. We had our best practice on Sunday and we continued that today,” Patterson said.
The work started on Sunday with their first practice since the 70-35 loss to Tech.
“Their guys came out wanting to practice. They were embarrassed about the loss. If they weren’t, they should have been,” Patterson said.
Brandon Hassell took over the quarterback position this week with starter Tye Gunn listed as questionable with an ankle injury.
“The question isn’t whether Gunn can go. It’s who will be Hassell’s backup. I’m kind of interested to see who will step up into that position,” Patterson said.
The game against Texas Tech was a difficult loss to stomach, Patterson said, but that conference games are much more significant.
“Every ball game becomes big now,” Patterson said.
QB questionable: TCU starting quarterback Tye Gunn, who was injured on an option play in the first half against Texas Tech, did not practice and is listed as questionable for the game against USF.
Brandon Hassell moved up in the depth chart to the starting position for the injured Gunn.
Wide receiver Reggie Harrell is listed as questionable for the USF game after injuring his finger against Texas Tech. Harrell practiced Tuesday afternoon.
Cornerback Mark Walker did not practice Tuesday and is questionable for the game against USF.