CFN Take: TCU O Rolls Oklahoma State
2014 TCU Horned Frogs ... Head Coach: Gary Patterson
Oct. 18 at TCU 42, Oklahoma State 9
8/30 Samford W 48-14
9/6 OPEN DATE
9/13 Minnesota W 30-7
9/20 OPEN DATE
9/27 at SMU W 56-0
10/4 Oklahoma W 37-33
10/11 at Baylor L 61-58
10/18 Oklahoma St W
10/25 Texas Tech
11/1 at West Virginia
11/8 Kansas State
11/15 at Kansas
11/20 OPEN DATE
11/27 at Texas
12/6 Iowa State
And You Care Because … TCU’s offense cranked up close to 700 yards of offense with B.J. Catalon running for scores from 34 and 35 yards out, and Josh Doctson catching an 84-yard touchdown pass. Oklahoma State could only managed three Ben Grogan field goals, all in the first half, and TCU scored 21 unanswered points including a 22-yard Deante Gray catch and a four-yard Aaron Green run.
What Else? Total yards: TCU 676 – Oklahoma State 258
- TCU QB Trevone Boykin completed 26-of-39 passes for 410 yards and three touchdowns with an interception
- Oklahoma State QB Daxx Garman completed 10-of-25 passes for 132 yards and two touchdowns
- TCU WR Josh Doctson caught seven passes for 225 yards and two touchdowns
Game Rating: C-
Oct. 11 at Baylor 61, TCU 58
And You Care Because … In one of the craziest games in the history of the Big 12, and the highest scoring game ever between two AP top ten teams, TCU appeared to be on its way to a blowout with a 49-yard interception return for a touchdown from Marcus Mallet for a 58-37 lead with under 12 minutes to play. And then Bryce Petty went to work, leading the way to 24 unanswered points with two 90+ yard touchdown drives in 1:23 on the first, finishing with a 28-yard pass to Antwan Goodley, and needing under a minute on the second with a 25-yard scoring pass to Corey Coleman to tie it. TCU had its chance, but misfired on a 4th and 3 from the Baylor 45, and Petty got it done taking the Bears 44 yards leading to a Chris Callahan game-winning field goal as time ran out. Lost in the insane ending was a huge day from the TCU offense, with B.J. Catalon returning a kickoff for a touchdown and running for two scores, but Petty and the passing game were too much with six touchdown passes including a 66-yarder to Goodley and a 67-yarder to KD Cannon.
What Else? Baylor QB Bryce Petty completed 28-of-55 passes for 510 yards and six touchdowns with two interceptions, and ran for 23 yards.
- TCU QB Trevone Boykin completed 21-of-47 passes for 287 yards and a score, and ran 18 times for 45 yards
- Baylor receivers: Antwan Goodley 8 catches, 158 yards, 2 TD. Corey Coleman 8 catches, 144 yards, 2 TD, KD Cannon 6 catches, 124 yards, 1 TD
- Total yards: Baylor 782 – TCU 485
Game Rating: A
Oct. 4 at TCU 37, Oklahoma 33
And You Care Because … TCU came up with some big time offense as B.J. Catalon scored from seven and 39 yards out, and Trevone Boykin threw two touchdown passes including a 29-yarder to Deante Gray to tie it up at 31 last in the third. But it was the defense that finished the job, with Paul Dawson returning an interception 41 yards for a touchdown and the Horned Frog D keeping the Sooner O off the scoreboard over the final 20 minutes of the game. Oklahoma cut it to four when Zach Sanchez returned the blocked extra point off of the Dawson run for a touchdown, but the offense couldn’t come up with the needed score. Sterling Shepard caught a 75-yard touchdown pass and Samaje Perine ran for three touchdowns for the Sooners.
What Else? Oklahoma QB Trevor Knight completed 14-of-35 passes for 309 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions, ran 13 times for 61 yards, and got one big shoutout from Katy Perry
- Oklahoma WR Sterling Shepard caught seven passes for 215 yards and a score, and RB Samaje Perine ran 25 times for 87 yards and three touchdowns
- Penalties & Turnovers: TCU 12-for-90 yards, three turnovers – Oklahoma 7-for-73 yards, two turnovers
- TCU QB Trevone Boykin completed 20-of-38 passes for 318 yards and two touchdowns with an interception, and ran 22 times for 77 yards
Game Rating: A
Sept. 27 TCU 56, at SMU 0
And You Care Because … TCU QB Trevone Boykin threw four touchdown passes and ran for two more, finding Deante Gray for scoring plays of 28 and seven yards out and taking off for a 27-yard score and an eight-yard touchdown. SMU turned it over three times and was outgained 614 yards to 245.
What Else? TCU QB Trevone Boykin completed 23-of-36 passes for 280 yards and four scores, and ran seven times for 62 yards and two touchdowns
- SMU QB Garrett Krstich completed 14-of-30 passes for 142 yards and a pick
- Rushing yards: TCU 265 – SMU 89
- TCU RB B.J. Catalon ran 19 times for 114 yards and a score
Game Rating: D-
Sept. 13 at TCU 30, Minnesota 7
And You Care Because … TCU destroyed Minnesota scoring the first 30 points of the game, highlighted by brilliant catches from Josh Doctson, scoring from 13 and seven yards out. Jaden Oberkrom added three field goals from 46, 45 and 12 yards away, and B.J. Catalon barreled in from one-yard out. Minnesota turned the ball over five times and didn’t get on the board until the fourth quarter on a 12-yard Maxx Williams catch.
What Else? TCU QB Trevone Boykin completed 27-of-46 passes for 258 yards and two touchdowns with a pick, and he ran 12 times for 92 yards.
- Minnesota star RB David Cobb was held to 41 yards on 15 carries. Mitch Leidner completed 12-of-26 passes for 151 yards and three picks, and ran nine times for four yards.
- The two teams combined to convert just five of 28 third down chances.
- TCU WR Josh Doctson caught six passes for 64 yards and two scores.
Game Rating: D+
Aug. 30 at TCU 48, Samford 14
And You Care Because … TCU rolled up 24 straight points in the first half and coasted the rest of the way, Trevone Boykin threw three touchdown passes and ran for another on the way to a 48-7 lead. Samford’s offense came up with one good drive and a two-yard Denzel Williams touchdown run. The other score came on a pick six late.
What Else? The quarterback situation appears to have settled itself for a moment. Boykin completed 29-of-41 passes for 320 yards and two touchdowns, and ran ten times for 29 yards and a score. Matt Joeckel completed just four of eight passes for a score with a pick six.
- The TCU running game didn’t move like it should’ve. The running backs were bottled up – for the most part – and the team averaged just 4.3 yards per pop.
- There wasn’t much of a pass rush, but Mike Tuaua came up seven tackles, two sacks and 3.5 tackles for loss with two forced fumbles.
- TCU outgained Samford 555 yards to 143 and came up with 33 first downs to nine.
Game Rating: D+
Someone needs to make sure that TCU gets the memo that you need an offense in the Big 12.
The big question when the Horned Frogs made the move up in class two years ago was whether or not the D that dominated for several years in Conference USA and the Mountain West could handle all of the high-octane Big 12 attacks. With a few exceptions here and there, the answer has been a resounding yes, and even when there have been defensive issues – the Texas game last year and the Oklahoma State loss in 2012 – for the most part, there wasn’t any help or support from the offense.
If you had told head coach Gary Patterson before last season that his defense would lead the Big 12 in run defense, finish second in total D behind Oklahoma, and would be fantastic on third downs and 11th in the nation in pass efficiency defense, he’d probably assume the program was about to take a big step forward and become a major player in the Big 12 chase.
Oh yeah, the offense.
A combination of bad luck – QB Casey Pachall getting hurt being the big blow to the passing game
in the middle of the season – and the lack of a steady running game – running for over 150 yards just twice against FBS teams – lead to a stagnant offense, and the defense couldn’t pick up the slack
for a key stretch. And then, when Pachall did return, he bombed away but the
team couldn't seem to win.
However, there’s a silver lining in the 4-8 disappointment of last season and the 7-6 2012 – the close losses.
From 2005 to 2011 – a seven season span – the Horned Frogs lost a total of 13 games, but they’ve lost 14 since joining the Big 12. On the plus side, they battled LSU tough early last year and they gave Oklahoma, Baylor and Kansas State a tough time, with four of their eight losses coming by a grand total of 12 points. Over the last two seasons, TCU is 3-7 in games decided by a touchdown or less – if that was flipped around to 7-3, the narrative would be completely different.
But to do that and to come up with the tight wins they need to generate some more pop on offense, and unfortunately, that doesn’t appear to be on the horizon any time soon.
The TCU offense was rocky this offseason, and it didn’t exactly provide a ton of hope in the spring game with several mistakes, no continuity and not enough healthy bodies to do exactly what the coaching staff might have liked. With new offensive coordinators in Sonny Cumbie – the former Texas Tech quarterback – and Doug Meachem tinkering with various ideas, there’s hope, but to rise up and be a threat in conference play, this summer and fall camp are vital.
All it’s going to take is a little more help, because the defense should be even better and stronger
- even with the departure of Devonte Fields - with seven starters back. It’s TCU, so it’s going to attack and it’s going to be great against the run, but as it’s finding, the difference between the Mountain West and the Big 12 are the midrange to lower teams. However, there’s reason to be excited – it could be a very quick rise from 4-8 to 8-4, or better. Patterson is too good to let this slide any further.
What to watch for on offense:
Is the offense really going to speed things up? It’s not really a can’t-beat-‘em-join-‘em situation; the Horned Frogs are simply trying to find something that starts to work after finishing 104th in the nation in total offense with no ground game and little coming through the air. In comes the new offensive coordinators to try to ramp things up a bit. Sonny Cumbie comes in from Texas Tech where he helped the Red Raider passing game keep on rolling after the Mike Leach era, while Doug Meachem worked with the quarterbacks at Houston before making the move to Fort Worth. Both of them know how to make a passing game go, and both of them are going to want to keep the tempo fast. Can this all flow in with everything Patterson is about and is this going to work with a defense that thrives off of being on the right side of the time of possession stat? That could be one of the big keys to the Big 12 season.
What to watch for on defense:
The pass rush might be absolutely devastating. The defense had its moments throughout last season and came up with steady pass rushing production throughout, highlighted by a seven-sack day against SMU and coming up with three against Baylor to finish things up. Overall, the Horned Frogs were able to manufacture 32 sacks and 98 tackles for loss coming in from several angles and utilizing a variety of players. It’s a big hit to the D as a whole to lose tackle Jon Lewis, who left the team this spring after deciding he was done playing football,
and his 4.5 sacks and 11 tackles for loss, but not having Devonte Fields back
isn't a total killer - the D did just fine after Fields suffered a foot injury and missed
most of last year after getting suspended. It's TCU. It always finds pass
The team will be far better if …
… the offense can move the chains. The defense was able to hold its own more often than not, but overall, this has been one of the team’s biggest areas of concern since joining the Big 12. The Horned Frog O converted 52% of its third down tries in 2011 and was above 50% three of the four years before moving up. It all ties in together – the running game didn’t really work, the passing game was faced with long downs and distances, and the results weren’t good on third downs. TCU gave LSU fits by keeping things moving converting 7-of-13 third down chances, but the offense didn’t get above 40% the rest of the way and converted exactly 40% against West Virginia and Kansas State.
It’s a ragged start to the season with Samford to kick things off before getting a week off to get ready for Minnesota. That’s followed up by an unnecessary off-week before a big run of eight straight games without a break starting with a short trip to SMU.
The Horned Frogs don’t leave the state of Texas until November 1st, getting three Big 12 home games in the first four starting with Oklahoma and hosting Oklahoma State and Texas Tech wrapped around a road game at Baylor. However, that’s followed up by three road games in the next four, going to West Virginia, Kansas and Texas – but with a week off to rest up for the Thanksgiving weekend game against the Longhorns. A win against Iowa State at home to close things out shouldn’t be a problem.
Best offensive player:
Junior RB B.J. Catalon. QB Trevone Boykin needs to be the star of the offense, and it would be really, really nice if a few receivers turned into studs and the offensive line could crank out a few all-stars, but it’s Catalon who was the best all-around weapon last year and could be used a bit more this year in a variety of ways. The running game might take on a little less of a role in the new-look attack, but for about 15 touches a game, the speedster can make big things happen whenever he gets the ball as a runner, receiver, or an all-star kickoff returner.
Best defensive player:
Senior S Sam Carter. The hope was for pass rusher Devonte Fields to return to form and be among the Big 12’s best players again, but
that's not going to happen now that he's transferring to Stephen F. Austin. Carter is the returning all-star and steadying force with the experience and the skill to make the defense his. While he didn’t make a ton of tackles, he was all over the field and became even more of a dangerous playmaker when the ball was in the air. He’s the leader of a strong secondary, and this year he might be involved even more against the run.
Key player to a successful season:
Junior QB Trevone Boykin or senior QB Matt Joeckel. Casey Pachall came back from injury and started to bomb away, but even though the passing production was fine, the results weren’t there as TCU lost four of its last five games. Boykin has been a nice fill-in, and he’s had a few moments, but other than running for 101 yards in the loss to Texas Tech, he’s been an erratic passer and he’s not going to scare anyone down the field.
Now he's likely going to shine with more of a receiver role. With Tyler Matthews transferring and Joeckel coming in from Texas A&M, all of a sudden, the quarterback situation in the new up-tempo offense is going to be even more interesting.
The season will be a success if …
… the Horned Frogs win eight games and get back to a bowl. There’s no excuse to shoot for anything less with their relatively schedule and with Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and Kansas State all coming to Fort Worth. Beating SMU, West Virginia and Kansas on the road is a must, and if they can do that, and if they don’t blow it at home against a Minnesota or Iowa State, this could and should be a turnaround season – if the offense works.
Oct. 4 vs. Oklahoma. There are tone-setters and then there’s beating a team that might be No. 1 in the country, or at the very least in the top five. This could be when TCU makes its official big Big 12 splash in Year Three. It’s not like Gary Patterson and the program has a fear of Oklahoma, coming up with a great win to kick off the 2005 season and battling really, really hard in the two years of Big 12 play in close losses. This time around, it’s the Big 12 opener with a road game against Baylor to follow and home date against Oklahoma State up next.
2013 Fun Stats:
- 1st Half Scoring: Opponents 171-106. 2nd Half Scoring: TCU 195-129
- Sacks: TCU 32 for 219 yards – Opponents 24 for 166 yards
- Red Zone Touchdowns: TCU 26-of-41 (63%) – Opponents 18-of-43 (42%)
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