MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — If he graded himself harshly after throwing for 511 yards at Maryland, imagine the self-appraisal Clint Trickett took from Saturday’s performance at TCU.
This time he threw for only 162 yards, had a hand in three turnovers and nearly gave away two more. With Trickett flustered and the offensive line struggling to pass protect, West Virginia resorted almost exclusively to handing off in the second half. Ultimately, the offense couldn’t generate enough points early or consume enough clock late to prevent a 31-30 loss.
“Last week the whole game-manager thing came up, and I thought I did a pretty terrible job of managing the game,” Trickett said. “Couple turnovers—I’ve got to be able to hold on to the ball and be more conscious of that.”
Trickett’s second two-interception game of the season included an attempted throwaway that TCU linebacker Paul Dawson snagged with his left hand on the sideline. Trickett didn’t see the interception while being dragged down by a blitzer and presumed his pass reached the WVU bench.
“I thought we were about to punt when the ref said first down TCU, and I’m like, ‘What the hell just happened?’ The guy made a hell of a play, one-handed going out of bounds.”
Nor did Trickett fully appreciate the impact of the vicious-looking facemask he sustained from TCU defensive end Josh Carraway in the first quarter. Despite the tackle occurring in plain view of three officials, no flag was thrown and Trickett wobbled to his feet.
“I didn’t notice at the time because I wanted to get on to the next play and play fast,” he said. “But I don’t know, it might have affected me a little bit.
“It was a physical game. I took a couple shots, but my body’s fine.”
Because Florida State had played the previous Thursday night, Trickett’s father Rick was able to attend the West Virginia-TCU game. He was just two weeks removed from suffering a mild heart attack.
“I told him I was sorry he had to come see that one, because I was embarrassed about the way I played,” Trickett said. “But he said don’t worry—I’m just happy to see you, and that put everything in perspective. I wish I could’ve had a better outcome for him. Obviously I didn’t play my best game.”