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Road to Saturday: Despite Patterson saying he’s not mad anymore, TCU-SMU has a little extra bite

Frank Schwab
Dr. Saturday

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Gary Patterson (left) and June Jones (right) (Associated Press)

A couple years ago during a Mountain West coaches teleconference, TCU coach Gary Patterson cut off a question by a Boise reporter. He told him he remembered him from before the Fiesta Bowl, and in an increasingly perturbed tone said he didn't appreciate him taking video of his players sounding off about Boise State to show the Broncos.

He apparently was scolding the wrong reporter, but the point is this: Patterson doesn't forget much, especially when it comes to slighting his program.

Last year, SMU beat TCU 40-33. The rematch is this week. After last season's game, SMU coach June Jones made a comment that insinuated the Horned Frogs weren't hard to prepare for because they don't change. And Patterson responded immediately, from the Star-Telegram's story last year:

"June Jones said we never change," Patterson said. "I think June Jones is 1-8 against TCU since he was at Hawaii (and SMU). I don't think he's changed that much either. ... I don't go there."

Patterson wasn't just getting started, and let loose on Jones and SMU:

"Don't look for any help coming from us ever again," Patterson said. "SMU got a lot of help from us over the last three or four years. They are not going to get any help about a game or a conference; they are going to get no help from Gary Patterson. Don't ask me about anything. We've bent over backwards to help them because that's what I believe in."

There's usually enough juice with a cross-town rivalry, and the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex rivals now have a little more to draw upon for Saturday's affair.

Patterson backtracked from those biting comments last year, saying after he watched the game again, if he had to do that press conference over he would say, "SMU kicked our butts on both sides of the ball." According to the Star-Telegram, Patterson said he apologized to Jones and wishes he hadn't said his comments publicly:

"Am I still disappointed in some things? Yeah, but the bottom line is if I want to do that I can just call [Jones] on the phone. I don't need to say it in front of a camera," Patterson said. "If I'm going to be the person I'm going to be and I'm going to teach young people to be the right people then I've got to act right, too. Simple as that."

Perhaps Patterson does regret his remarks, but if he's been stewing over them for a year, this seems like a good spot for TCU to get some revenge. TCU is 3-0 with dominating wins against Kansas and Virginia on its record. SMU is 1-2, with a win against Stephen F. Austin. The losses were to Baylor and Texas A&M, and the Mustangs gave up 107 points in those games.

If Patterson and TCU are still angry, SMU might have reason to be concerned.

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