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October 31, 2014

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UNLV football:

UNLV football falls at TCU in season finale, 56-9

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Associated Press

TCU quarterback Matt Brown (10) pases the ball to wide receiver Brandon Carter (3) as UNLV linebacker John Lotulelei (55) defends in the second half of their game in Fort Worth, Texas. TCU won 56-9.

UNLV loses to TCU

KSNV coverage of UNLV's season-ending loss in Fort Worth, Texas, Dec. 3, 2011.

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As if the Texas Christian University Horned Frogs needed any extra motivation for Saturday's Mountain West Conference finale with UNLV, they got it midway through the second quarter.

That's when it was announced at Amon G. Carter Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas, that sixth-ranked Houston had been upset by Southern Miss, 49-28, in the Conference USA championship game.

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TCU head coach Gary Patterson, left, and UNLV head coach Bobby Hauck greet each other after their game in Fort Worth, Texas. TCU won 56-9.

TCU, which seemed lethargic while building a 7-3 lead, suddenly was playing for a whole lot more than a third straight Mountain West title and fourth straight 10-win season. Nope, Garry Patterson's defending Rose Bowl champions were back in the hunt for a third straight BCS bowl appearance, possibly the Sugar Bowl.

It didn't take long for the Frogs, who need to finish 16th or better in Sunday's final BCS poll and ahead of Southern Miss to earn an automatic BCS berth, to garner some style points.

TCU (10-2, 7-0) scored four touchdowns over a 5-minute, 19-second span en route to a 35-6 halftime lead and then cruised to a 56-9 victory over the Rebels (2-10, 1-6), who dropped their 16th straight road game dating back to an Oct. 24, 2009, win at New Mexico.

"Yeah, they saw the Houston score," Patterson said when asked what prompted the late second quarter scoring outburst by his squad.

"We heard the fans' reactions before we could see the score," added safety Greg McCoy. "But after that it was fuel to our fire. We just saw the opportunity and took it."

The good news for Bobby Hauck and company? TCU is headed to the Big 12 Conference next season and is no longer on the schedule.

You can't blame the Rebels if they cringe a little when they hear the words "Fort Worth." Counting Saturday's latest butt-kicking, UNLV has now been outscored 224-56 in five losses at TCU, an average margin of defeat of 33.6 points.

The Rebels, despite starting third-team freshman quarterback Taylor Barnhill, actually made things interesting for the first 23 minutes.

UNLV's defense forced three consecutive three-and-outs to start the game. The Rebels then took advantage of good field position, starting on their own 47 after a 23-yard punt, to take a 3-0 lead on the first of three field goals by Nolan Kohorst, this one a 39-yarder with 5:35 left in the first quarter.

But TCU came right back to take a 7-3 lead on quarterback Casey Pachall's 8-yard quarterback draw, capping a nine-play, 55-yard drive.

Still, the Rebels, who came into the game 39-point underdogs, had to feel pretty good about themselves trailing by just four points midway through the second quarter.

Then the roof caved in.

In the span of a little over five minutes, TCU scored four touchdowns, including a 99-yard kickoff return by McCoy after a 43-yard field goal by Kohorst, and a 16-yard interception return by linebacker Kris Gardner. The Frogs also scored on a 32-yard touchdown run by Matthew Tucker one play after blocking a Chase Lansford punt.

"Within two minutes it went from 14-6 to 35-6 from the blocked punt, kickoff return and interception for touchdown," Hauck said. "We were in the game and playing hard and fairly well, but any time we match up with TCU's speed, skill and athletic ability, you are holding your breath every time the ball goes out."

TCU made it 42-6 on the first possession of the third quarter, driving 74 yards in 10 plays capped by a 2-yard touchdown run by tailback Waymon James. That marked the fifth touchdown in a 12-minute span for the Frogs.

There was not much UNLV could do after that, especially with Barnhill, a limited passer who had been moved to H-Back a month earlier, at the controls. UNLV was 0-for-15 on third downs and finished with just six first downs and 164 yards in total offense. Barnhill completed 4 of 12 passes for 48 yards and was sacked three times.

"The 0-for-15 on third down is the best we've seen this year," Patterson said. "We've kept getting better and they had to play a freshman quarterback."

Barnhill, who also started UNLV's Nov. 12 loss at New Mexico, got the nod because sophomore starter Caleb Herring and backup Sean Reilly were both still nursing injuries.

"Caleb is having trouble with his shoulder injury," Hauck said. "We tried to warm him up early and he couldn't do it."

About the only bright spot in this one for the Rebels was the coin toss. Former linebacker Bryce Saldi, a Dallas-area native who continues to recover from a serious brain injury suffered during a July 3, 2009 skateboarding accident, was an honorary captain who took the field for the coin flip.

"He's still part of this team and we still love him," senior tight end Austin Harrington said. "It was a great thing we were able to do that for him. He never ceases to amaze me on how much he progresses each time I see him. I think it was great that TCU let us do that."

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  1. I wish I could continue to chant 'Mike Leach, Mike Leach, Mike Leach', but it's too late for that now.

    So UNLV faithful, what say you now about your "coach", Bobby Hauck? Are you finally realizing he is out of his league and has no chance making UNLV even remotely competitive? If not, please tell us why.

    It is time to realize a mistake has been made and cut your losses UNLV. Please!

  2. I agree that we're not getting what we wanted out of Hauck but let's be honest... At $2 million/year Mike Leach was out of OUR league.

  3. Hauck will turn this program around. I still have faith in him. Next season we should start to see some serious improvements.

  4. (Goo Goo Dolls)Your the first person I thought of when I heard WSU announced Mike Leach as their new head coach. Bobby you better get it going I lost on 2 1/2 over wager. Back to Back 2 season win totals is hard to do. Just look at your boy in WSU getting fired (formerly of eastern washington) Paul Wulff of Div I 2aa beat you 59-7 and he got fired...You need to be better the last 2 years have been horrible maybe the worst I've seen since following UNLV fb in 89'.
    You could learn a thing or two from coach Rice on how to take what your left with and build towards the future!
    You have been a "blow hard", big talk on sidelne no results. To achieve this level of success is difficult to do but you proved it could be done not just one yeat but two years...very frustrating and embarrasing to older alum.

  5. This team has no identity. They're not big, physical, fast, aggressive, talented, or focused. For whatever reason the coaches don't know how to or the players just refuse to focus come game time. Finally Mike Pritchard (radio play by play) who was an outstanding player both in college & the NFL called out the Rebels for their lack of heart. He said, "there are several players that dont want to be here or play, & there are several players "upperclassmen" who shouldn't be playing D1 football.

    Thank goodness the season is over!! If Hauck cannot produce 5-6 wins next season & be in the games they lose another change needs to be made. I'd be happy with a change now but I'm only speaking from the unconditional support Hauck has been given by Livengood.

  6. Dipstick- Have you not been to a game, I would not consider the amount of people showing up as anything to write about.
    Goo Goo- The UNLV fans will never understand the fact that they need to just fire Hauck. They may be limited as to who they can hire in the short term. Yet a pee wee coach for the blind & deaf could do a better job at UNLV.
    Icy- Really, you are going to hold out hope that this wannabe coach will get better next year? What hope are you holding on to? Your first mistake was that you took that silly over bet, not our fault. That was easy money..
    Again people I really want to support this team, yet it is like watching a train wreck to see how bad it can get. You just can't help but look. I am not hiding behind a computer, if I could see this so called division 1 coach I would tell him to his face that he should count his blessings that the university has lost all hope in the football program, other wise he would be out of a job. As well as that he sucks as a coach (kept it pg for the moderators).
    Only plus out of this game was that for a few minutes TCU was playing with you like cat plays with string, before it realized that it had to play at full strength since there was a BCS birth at bid again..

  7. Hauck is the single worst coach in Division I right now. And from the early recruiting returns, he can't do that, either. I don't care how many national titles he won at Montana; I-AA (or FCS for those insisting on the new terminology) is a completely different ballgame than the I/FBS level.

    Now, it would be one thing if they were actually showing improvement. But the team is, at absolute best, treading water, and my general sense of the program is that it's actually regressing.

    So yes, fire Hauck and start over. It's not like it can get any worse.

  8. Hey Go Bruins: why don't you go troll a ucla board or something?

    I still stand with giving Hauck one more season. College Football is not the NFL. You pick up where the last coach left off and go from there. If I recall, Sanford didn't hand over a winning football team, that's why he was fired.

    Next season, if UNLV doesn't finish with a sub par .500 record, then I'll call for Hauck getting fired.

  9. So Andy, you want to give this looser one more year of no road wins, sub par (at best) home games, a great showing that he gives up at half time? Why should we put these poor kids though that? The only thing it will do is drive away the local kids who can actually play football even faster. What local kid will want to play for a hometown football program who is actually going in the wrong direction?

  10. GoBruins: So who do we hire and how is he going to do better with what we have to pay a new coach?

    Who is he going to recruit to come play at UNLV?

    Is Caleb Hearing going to magically throw more completed passes with a new coach?

  11. See, in my opinion, there's a difference between not a winning football program and the complete pile of crud that UNLV has become. Granted, the Rebels don't have a great football history to begin with, but nothing I've seen these last two years has suggested to me that Hauck can even bring this program to the level of mediocre.

  12. The difference is get a coach who will not give up, get a coach who will let the qb actually run some plays besides a run play, get a coach who will motivate the program, get a coach who is not there just to collect a paycheck, I would love to go support a team who even at this point just shows up for 60 mins of football. This Hauck joke, has no right to be in NCAA! No I am not a troll, for I am looking for something positive. That is to get ride of this joker & get someone who actually wants a chance to win! Let's start there & build on that! At this point I would even say that there has to be a pop warner coach out there would want & could do a much better job!

  13. Its a real sad state of affairs right now & thats an understatement. Do I believe Hauck is the right coach "NO", do I believe UNLV has a lot of options "NO", neither do I believe Livengood wants to fire Hauck. The fan support has always sucked as long as I can remember so boycotting games or the coach I dont think will matter to the AD. As long as the B-ball team is winning that's all that matters to the university. I can't blame local talent for playing out of state, why stay home for a bad program when you can go to a major conference (BCS) and get playing time? I'm just saying all we've ever heard for the last 25 yrs is "wait until next year", we're still waiting...

  14. UNLV Football..........Glad thats over.

  15. It's just a sad, sad, sad state for football at UNLV.