Texas Tech drops TCU in football
TCU associate athletic director Jack Hesselbrock, who is in charge of scheduling, confirmed the change Wednesday.
The Red Raiders were to visit the Rose Bowl champion Horned Frogs on Sept. 10 in Fort Worth. Texas Tech, however, needed to drop one nonconference game in order to fit in a ninth Big 12 game and opted to keep its games against New Mexico and Nevada and drop TCU.
Texas Tech will be part of the Big 12's newly aligned 10-team league.
TCU offered to relocate the game to Cowboys Stadium from Amon G. Carter Stadium, which is undergoing a $105 million renovation, but Tech declined. Tech and Baylor are in negotiations to move their Nov. 26 game from Waco to Cowboys Stadium.
The Horned Frogs beat Wisconsin on New Year's Day to finish No. 2 in the final AP Top 25 poll and USA Today coaches poll.
A source close to Texas Tech said the Red Raiders are looking to push back any game against TCU a few years. Hesselbrock said Tech could re-schedule but that it wouldn't be before the 2015 season. Tech would owe TCU a forfeiture fee if the game is not played, Hasselbrock said.
Last season's scheduled matchup in Lubbock was canceled when ESPN wanted to televise the Tech-Texas game on the same date. ESPN then worked to set up TCU's season-opener against Oregon State at Cowboys Stadium.
TCU athletic administrators have expressed dissatisfaction at being notified of the cancellation this late because it will be difficult to fill the vacancy and nearly impossible to schedule as high-profile an opponent, which is important considering BCS rankings.
With the Mountain West departures of Utah and BYU, the Horned Frogs were already looking to fill voids in their schedule. Incoming Boise State is scheduled to play TCU next season, filling one of those slots.
Hesselbrock said the conference is attempting to move that game to Boise to give the Broncos home-field advantage over the Frogs, who are leaving to the Big East in 2012.
TCU still will have a Big 12 team on its schedule next season as the Frogs open the season at Baylor on Sept. 3.
Texas Tech has not released its 2011 schedule because it lacked one nonconference game. Two sources confirmed that the Red Raiders will open the season at home Sept. 3 against Texas State, which is now coached by Dennis Franchione, and will move its scheduled Sept. 17 home date against New Mexico to Albuquerque.
Jeff Caplan covers colleges for ESPNDallas.com.
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