KaVontae Turpin celebrates his 61-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter.

It wasn’t pretty, but the TCU Horned Frog football team retained the Iron Skillet in a 56-37 win over the rival SMU Mustangs at Amon G. Carter Stadium in Fort Worth on Saturday night.

The no. 3 ranked Horned Frogs moved to 3-0 on the season after the win, which was the fourth straight victory for TCU against SMU and the seventh win in the last eight games against the Mustangs.

SMU dropped to 1-2 on the season under first-year head coach Chad Morris.

The victory was bittersweet for TCU, as the already-depleted defense suffered a loss in a season-ending leg injury to cornerback Ranthony Texada.

Defensive lineman Terrell Lathan also exited the game early. TCU head coach Gary Patterson said that Lathan suffered an undisclosed injury that would possibly sideline him for the next game, although he is expected to return later in the season.

The secondary featured a rotating cast of players that TCU head coach Gary Patterson said would have to play better if the team is going to continue to win.

“It’s a frustration for a team that’s used to historically being very proud about playing defense,” Patterson said.

SMU put up 508 total yards of offense, the most yardage allowed by the Frogs since last year’s loss to Baylor.

Mustang wide receivers Courtland Sutton and Ryheem Morris tore up the TCU secondary on several deep balls down the sidelines. Sutton finished with 115 yards on four catches with a touchdown.

Patterson said that cornerbacks Corry O’Meally and Torrance Mosley, who were thrust into the spotlight as a result of the injuries,┬áneeded to take advantage of their newfound playing time.

“If you don’t like the fire, get out of the pan,” Patterson said.

The offense, which put up 720 total yards, will have to continue to bear the brunt of the load for the Frogs, Patterson said.

“I said at the beginning of the year that the offense was probably going to have to carry us,” Patterson said, “and I don’t think that’s changed.”

“I think they have the ability to do so if Boykin stays healthy,” Patterson said. “We have to understand that every possession counts.”

The bright spot for the Frogs came from speedy freshman receiver and return man KaVontae Turpin. Turpin, whom fellow receiver Ty Slanina described after the game as “quick as sin,” turned what seemed to be a simple 3-yard slant route into a 61-yard touchdown on TCU’s first offensive drive.

Turpin finished with 79 yards receiving on two catches. He had 111 combined return yards, including a 38 yard kickoff return that he almost took all the way to the end zone.

“Turpin’s just a ballplayer,” Patterson said. “He gets it.”

“The last guy that got it like he does as a freshman was (former TCU wide receiver and current NFL player) Jeremy Kerley.”

As TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin said with a smile postgame, Turpin has “the juice right now.”

“Every time he touches the ball he makes something happen,” Boykin said.

Boykin himself totaled 504 total yards of offense in yet another strong performance. The senior had 454 yards through the air with 5 touchdown passes and an interception to go along with 50 yards on the ground and a rushing TD.

Aaron Green had 165 yards rushing, with an average of 7.8 yards per carry. Green had two one-yard touchdown runs on the night.

Josh Doctson moved into solo second place in the TCU career rankings for touchdown receptions with 18 after catching two against the Mustangs. His second, a diving catch in the end zone with 6:32 remaining in the 4th quarter, ended a 20-0 run for SMU.

For SMU, quarterback Matt Davis had 330 yards passing to compliment 62 yards rushing. The junior had two touchdowns on the ground and one through the air.

Davis’s scrambling ability kept several plays alive for SMU. The TCU defensive line, which normally preys on opposing quarterbacks, had only three sacks on the day.

The Mustangs also broke TCU’s streak of 27 straight games with a caused turnover.

“Give SMU and Chad Morris a lot of credit,” Patterson said. “We have a really good offense, and they fought themselves back into the game.”

“I think they’re going to win a lot more ball games.”

TCU trailed for the first time all season after the Mustangs scored on their opening drive.

Boykin’s 242 first-half passing yards helped ease the tension caused by SMU’s fast start among TCU fans in the packed stadium.

The Frogs held a 28-17 lead at the half before racing out to a 42-17 lead midway through the 3rd quarter.

SMU answered back with 20 unanswered points to tighten the score to 42-37 with 8:20 remaining in the 4th quarter before TCU ended the game on a 14-0 run.

TCU moves on to face the Texas Tech Red Raiders (3-0) at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas on Saturday, September 26. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:45 p.m.

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Grant McGalliard is a senior journalism and political science major from Bay City, Texas. He's worked in everything from sports to student organizations at TCU, and recently began blogging with the Dallas Morning News. In his spare time, Grant enjoys tweeting far too much, pretending he knows more than he does about Premier League soccer, and listening to the music of Kanye West.