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View from the Stands: TCU

Refs, over-involved or under-involved, which do you prefer? 

TCU v Kansas Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images


11:00 kickoff, Game Day in town for football for the first time. We roll out of the driveway just after 6:30, pick up Starbucks, exchange a “Rock Chalk, Jayhawk” with someone at Starbucks, and off we go. Traffic isn’t too bad and we zip across K10 without any issues.

As we roll into lot 36 just before 7:30, there are more people around and the atmosphere is more lively than normal. The lot has more people in it than at this point before kickoff last week, but we get a nice spot with spots on either side of us. Our tailgating friends can park next to us when they arrive. While setting up the tailgate my kids walk over to see the ESPN GameDay setup. As my wife and I finish getting set up, the kids get back and talk about how many people are already on The Hill.

Once my friends arrive and finish their setup, we go check out The Hill for ourselves. The kids were not wrong, there are a lot of people here before the show has begun. This is great. A good showing by the fans can help sell KU to many more people and help with recruits and national perception of the program. I love it. I don’t see him, but Perry the Platypus, or at least someone dressed like him, is here. The Wazzu flags, the fun signs. I see one with Mangino on it. I think it refers to “Keep loading the wagon”, but I never get a clean look at it.

As we close in on 8:00, Rece Davis and the show director come on the PA and want a practice run of the Rock Chalk chant. The crowd gives it a shot but they are saving their energy for when the lights come on for real. When the lights do come on, this is what the crowd sounds like standing in the back.

For me this is pretty much the end of the GameDay experience, I watch for a few more minutes, but wander back to my tailgate and have some drinks, good food, and fun with my friends. I go back over a couple of times, to see what the scene looks like, but I am too old to stand on The Hill and watch GameDay the whole time.

KU V TCU Gameday on The Hill 2022.10.08
Tim Reddin
KU v TCU GameDay on The Hill 2022.10.08
Tim Reddin

Many more people wander around during pregame tailgating and enjoy the beautiful morning. The KU administration could not dial up a better day to showcase the school and team on TV. Luckily we have people around us with satellite TV setups so we get to see some of the scenes on TV. The Hill looks great with all the people.

People are more anxious to get into the stadium this week so we pack up a little earlier than normal. Instead of starting to pack 30 minutes before kickoff, we are already headed to the stadium at that point. This is a good choice, even though last week was also a sellout, there seem to be more people headed to the stadium at the same time we are. When we get to the bottom of The Hill, the lines at the gates are longer, and the trash cans are overflowing.

KU v TCU GameDay on The Hill
Tim Reddin
KU v TCU GameDay on The Hill 2022.10.08
Tim Reddin
KU v TCU Line at the gates 2022.10.08
Tim Reddin

It has taken longer to get in this week and because of this, I miss most of the band performance. The delay is not just longer lines at the gates, but his week I need a comfort break, and the lines for the restrooms are at peak halftime line length. There are more people here this week. I may have missed most of the in-stadium pregame, but I make it in time to see the hype video and team entrance.

Game time, TCU wins the toss and takes the ball. I love it. KU getting the second-half kickoff is fine by me.

First Quarter

  • The crowd seems to have a lot more energy than last week to start the game.
  • Wrap up on a tackle.
  • Is Malcolm Lee in coverage? Interesting, I guess.
  • My note here says “Kenny get digits. 3rd down”. He must have made a nice hit.
  • Defense hold for a field goal attempt.
  • FG is a win at this point 3-0.
  • 3 &10. Skinner hit early and the defensive player did not look. No flag.
  • More TCU fans than Iowa State fans last week. TCU did not bring their band and has filled their sections much better than Iowa State.
  • On the earlier punt, the long snapper hurt his knee. I do not think he was hit and the injured knee had a brace on it. New long snapper going forward.
  • Nice punt and force out by Quinton Skinner.
  • Lonnie!!!!
  • Craig Young ends the quarter with a nice tackle for another big loss.

Second Quarter

  • The defense converts the hold. Good start for them.
  • Time to score.
  • The new long snapper, Emory Duggar, is getting extra snaps on the sideline.
  • This is a better possession.
  • Nice call and play on 4th. Did not get it. Everyone around me is happy they went for it.
  • The junior reporter segment is early today. When is the best time to go to the dentist? Tooth hurty. Not the best joke of the season, but it gets a good laugh.
  • A false start on 3rd and short by TCU brings Lonnie back on the field.
  • And Lonnie gets the stop!
  • TCU punting again. Good half so far for the defense.
  • A guy in front of me has the under (70) on the game and is feeling good right now.
  • Wow. What a catch by Fairchild. Wrong shoulder! He had to turn all the way around before pulling it in.
  • Devin Neal with a nice run.
  • A fumble on the goal line? My only clue is a TCU player not near the ball stats to point like they got the ball. No!!!
  • I am starting to hate #1 for TCU. He is killing us. 50 yards on the first play.
  • This is just a killer if TCU scores a TD. 14-point swing?
  • Damn!!! 10-0.
  • Should have the lead. Instead down 10.
  • That feels big.
  • Need a score now before half.
  • My son describes Quentin Johnson as Derrick Henry but a wide receiver.
  • Great by 28!!! Savion Morrison makes an appearance.
  • Grimm is open early and late, and can not pull it in.
  • FG of 39?
  • Is Jalon ok?
  • FG good 10-3.
  • Jalon is in the tent.
  • Well, that was awful. Kicking is a problem. Out of bounds.
  • Three-man front and Lonnie is one of the three.
  • Duggins pass was never a threat. OJ Burroughs had it from the moment it left Duggin’s hand.
  • If we had Mahomes we would try to score with 13 seconds left. We don’t so they neal it down.


Today at half time there is not much going on unless you are a One Direction fan. The KU Band knocks out 4 or 5 hits from the boy band. If you are a Blondie fan, did you know One Direction covered “One Way or Another”? I have a daughter who was a big 1D fan, I do not remember hearing it. On a different note, Jalon has a large personal cheering section here today. There is a group of no less than 10 family members and friends decked out in their best Jalon gear.

Third Quarter

  • No Jalon Daniels? The hit didn’t look that bad, but it looks like Bean is getting ready to play.
  • Come on Bean!!!!
  • Jason is practicing with Devon and Novitsky. Handoffs and snaps.
  • Great catch and run by Tanaka, but what was that stutter step? Just run.
  • Fairchild could not be more wide open.
  • Get it done son!!! 10-10.
  • The TCU kick returner is a big guy.
  • Malcolm Lee knocks down the pass and the crowd is back in the game.
  • The baby next to me is out cold. Noise does not matter to him
  • Is Jalon not even on the sideline? I don’t see him.
  • I thought the officials might call that incomplete, but even after the review, it is ruled a completion and fumble. Nice play by Kenny.
  • Skinner got knocked down, again. No flag, again! The referees seem uninterested in doing anything but the minimum their job requires.
  • Great throw by Bean to Grimm for the touchdown. Next time lower the degree of difficulty. 17-10.
  • Jalon is now on the sideline, his arm in a sling. Hate to see that, but he has a big smile.
  • Odd kickoff. Was that an intended squib kick? Logic? Are we just trying to keep it away from the big guy deep?
  • The result of the kickoff is about the same as previous kickoffs. My guess is kickoff coverage confidence is low.
  • There is an announcement over the PA saying “a young girl in blue named Brooklyn is missing, please let us know if you see her”.
  • Sus unabated to the quarterback on Lonnie. He was definitely offsides, but he was moving back to the line of scrimmage to get onsides when they stopped the play. It must be a break for us because TCU looks upset they did not get a free play.
  • And we are tied. Come on defense. 17-17
  • TCU tries a pooch kick. The KU player makes a nice catch on the sideline, but maybe let it go out of bounds next time. Hard to blame him though, your first instinct is to catch the ball. Someone needs to yell during the play to let it go.
  • Nothing that series by the offense.
  • Bad snap results in a bad throw by Duggins. Come on D!
  • TCU running fast tempo and running all over us.
  • PA announcer says Brooklyn is still missing, please continue to be on the lookout for her.
  • Jalon is trying to pump up the offense on the sideline and Kenny is slow to get up, not good.
  • Went from up 7 to down 7. Very frustrating 24-17
  • Not sure what happened but during the last couple of plays, everyone to my left in my section is looking at something happening in the stands nearby. I cannot see what is going on, but now someone has been tossed from the game and everyone is cheering the decision. I wish the refs were as involved in doing their job as stadium security.
  • Kenny must be ok because he is back to receive the kickoff.
  • What an answer!
  • Celebration penalty. Wow! I don’t know what he did but that sucks.
  • Seeing the replay of the catch now, that is a terrific catch!! 24-24
  • While the review is happening a loud cheer is sent up by the fans as it is announced Brooklyn has been found.
  • The review confirms the touchdown. From what they showed us on the scoreboard, there did not seem to be a good angle to reverse the call
  • Are we going to get another review of the review? Coaches must really hate the possibility of losing to KU.
  • Celebration penalty compounded on the kickoff when the ball goes out of bounds. Man, we need our kickers to be better.
  • With a short field, TCU gets a quick touchdown. 31-24.
  • The second half is totally different from the first half. This is the game I think everyone expected.
  • Have to note, at this time Texas is beating OU 42-0.

Fourth Quarter

  • A couple of thoughts as the last quarter begins: Can we mount the comeback win? Bean is an all-or-nothing guy, and it feels like 5:00 since we got to Lawrence before 7:30 this morning.
  • Reviewing Arnold’s catch along the sideline. I thought he was out, and the first full-speed replay seems to confirm it. But when they slow it down I now have my doubts and think they may give it to us.
  • Well, that was a tease, the ruling is an incomplete catch, Arnold was out of bounds.
  • Refs really don’t want to throw flags today despite many opportunities to throw them.
  • This drive is killing me. There are open receivers all over the field and Jason does not see them. During one play both Grimm and Skinner are wide open and Bean is looking the other way. So frustrating.
  • Now we are running to the short side of the field. What is going on?
  • Do we try the field goal or go for it? The choice is to try the field goal.
  • Missed it!!! No!! Still down 7
  • We are making this so hard. It feels like we are outplaying TCU, but a couple of penalties, a couple of turnovers, and special teams are all killing us.
  • The crowd is subdued at the moment
  • Cobee with a very nice breakup
  • Well, I have not seen that before. Nice catch by the ref on TCU’s punt snap. The ball must not have been declared ready.
  • On a day where the referees’ flags seem glued to their pockets, there is no way they are throwing a flag for catch interference, but the TCU player definitely kicked our returner’s foot on the catch.
  • Grimm and Skinner are showing off their catching abilities today.
  • Do you know what the best thing is about always reviewing KU touchdowns? We “Wave the Wheat” a second time when the touchdown is confirmed.
  • Touchdown and tie game. 31-31.
  • Feels like we should be up what, 10 points? But only tied.
  • The crowd is back again.
  • Special teams is a disaster.
  • Why did TCU get 5 extra yards? After the kickoff. They marked the ball at the 27. But just before play resumes, they move it to the 32. No explanation is given.
  • Derrick Henry, ahhh, I mean Quentin Johnson is a killer.
  • “Should we be using our timeouts during TCU’s drive?”, “Should we let them score?”, those are a couple of the strategy questions I hear asked around me as TCU is driving again.
  • Touchdown TCU. 38-31.
  • At least we have some time left, 1:36 & 3 timeouts.
  • McBride gives us hope as TCU kicks short. I have to ask why? McBride is probably more likely to give KU better field position than anyone returning it from 20-25 yards deeper.
  • I will spare you the game ending blow by blow. I have two thaoughts after watching the last few plays of the game. One, I can maybe forgive the refs for not calling the horsecollar on the runner going out of bounds, the play was on the other side of the field and sometimes what looks like a horsecollar is not. Second, what I cannot forgive is the hold not being called. I could see Arnold’s jersey stretch away from his body. A textbook holding penalty at a key moment against a player directly involved in the play, a flag should have been thrown, there is no excuse. That said KU did not lose the game because of the no-call, but KU was wrongly denied an opportunity to continue the effort tie and/or win the game at the end.
  • It is 2:30 and feels more like 5:30.



KU Football has seen both over-involved and under-involved referees this season, which do you prefer?

This poll is closed

  • 13%
    (3 votes)
  • 86%
    (19 votes)
22 votes total Vote Now

You know what, it is so much easier to be a fan of a team that is non-competitive, no good, and has absolutely no expectations, but it is not nearly as fun. As I leave the stadium, again this week virtually no one left early but this week the crowd is subdued.

KU v TCU Post Game 2022.10.08
Tim Reddin

Most seem happy the game was competitive but bummed we lost. No one seems mad, there is still a feeling of optimism just more subdued compared to the high spirits of this morning. The fun of being undefeated is gone as is College GameDay. The stage has been torn down and packed away probably waiting for directions on what town to head to next. The only sign they were here is the Gameday bus is still parked on The Hill.

KU v TCU Post-game on The Hill 2022.10.08
Tim Reddin

This is a day I will not easily forget, it was a day when KU football was undefeated more than a month into the season and the center of the college football universe. Now I hope the team gets at least the one win they need to be bowl eligible. Can we actually get it in Norman?