By Will Martin
Saturday – October 26 – 6:30 PM
TV: FOX Sports 1
Amon Carter Stadium – Ft. Worth
Saturday in Ft. Worth is going to be a sold out affair for the return of the Texas Longhorns and TCU Horned Frogs. TCU is coming off of a road loss in Stillwater, Oklahoma last week 24-10.
Again the defense kept the game close. All season long the challenge for the Frogs continues to be the ability of the offense to start off strong instead of waiting for the defense to cause the wake up.
A slow start against the Texas Longhorns would be a huge detriment to Gary Patterson’s boys.
Coach had a few thoughts about all of this.
Week 8 in Ft. Worth
“Week eight. It’s a good Texas team who just had a big win. If you look at the three-game winning streak they’re on, they started with a tough ball game against Kansas State. You had an Iowa State game where you go up there and play at night, which is always tough. You saw an Oklahoma State team play there and get beat a couple years ago, which cost them the chance to play for the national title. Texas then came back and really got after an Oklahoma team that beat us. We have our hands full with a very talented Texas team. Coach (Mack) Brown is always complimentary of us, but the bottom line is they’ve been playing really well, getting their confidence back and doing the things they need to do. We have to find a way to win. We’ve been close. We’ve got to do a better job on offense in the first half. Obviously, we need to start faster to win ball games and then you have to finish.”
What has changed with Texas in the last three weeks or so?
“They’ve become sounder on defense. I liked Manny Diaz, and there were a lot of good things that they did. Greg Robinson has since come in. They’ve secured themselves on offense and gotten healthier. One of the things that has happened is Daje Johnson has come back. He ran a punt back against Oklahoma and had been out since the BYU game. Mike Davis had a bad ankle and is now healthier. I’m sure the off week has helped them. They also have some young guys who are very good players. Bryant Jackson, who stepped in and caught a wheel route, outran guys from Oklahoma for a touchdown. They’ve always had those kind of skill guys. They can obviously run in the secondary and their front defense is really good.”
Any differences you see with Texas quarterbacks Case McCoy and David Ash?
“I don’t know if there are any differences. They run the same offense. Case McCoy is doing what he needs to do to win ball games. He’s getting the ball where it needs to be. I thought he was always a good quarterback. They’re also running the football better. You have running backs and wide receivers who are healthy. One of the biggest things with the tight ends and offensive line is that they’re more physical than they were a year ago.”
What’s the latest with Casey Pachall?
“It will be a weekly-type situation. You’ll then have to decide what kind of role he has and how you want to run the offense. We’ve had the best scout team quarterback in the country the last three weeks. He has been throwing the ball against our defense.”
What is the state of your team today?
“One of the things I can say about our kids, and said last week, is that they are still playing very hard. I think that shows their level of maturity and the confidence they have in what they need to do. I think sometimes people forget that kids are kids.”
At 3-4, the Horned Frogs are off to their worst start in 14 years, and in many ways this is TCU’s last stand. If the Horned Frogs drop this game, they could be in for their worst season of the Gary Patterson era, and even miss out on a bowl game.
The defense continues to play tough, but the offense has been a season long headache. Saturday, Texas generates enough offense by slugging it out in the trenches with Johnathan Gray and Malcolm Brown, and the Longhorns stealthily move to 4-0 in the conference with Kansas coming to Austin next weekend.
Expect another low scoring game 24-13 in favor of Texas. Weather could be a factor this Saturday night.