November 18, 2016
Happy Friday! It finally feels like football season! Bundle up when you head to the game tomorrow. It’s going to be a cool 48 degrees at kickoff.
No. 13 Oklahoma State comes to visit Saturday. This is just the second time at “The Carter” for Oklahoma State since TCU joined the Big 12. They’re riding a six-game winning streak, and they have lots of weapons.
OSU quarterback Mason Rudolph is the hottest QB in college football right now. He has been ablaze the last three games, and no quarterback in college football has more deep completions (34) or yards on deep throws (1,342). Last year, he lit up the Frogs for 352 yards and five touchdowns. Doing most of the damage on the receiving end was James Washington, #28. He’s a speedster from a little town north of Abilene called Stamford, Texas (check the note below for an interesting fact on this tiny town). Washington had huge games recently, including 82-yard scoring catches in each of the last two games. Last year against TCU, he was stealthy, running through the Frog secondary with five receptions and 184 yards, including scoring grabs of 48, 50 and 74 yards. Additional wideouts with large claws include Jalen Mccluskey, #1 (62 catches on the year) and Jhajuan Seales, #81. The Cowboys worked hard to improve their running game, which last year was pitiful. This year, they are averaging 148 yards per game, most of it on the legs of freshman Justice Hill, #27. One area of interest for TCU’s defense should be Oklahoma State’s offensive line. No group in the Big 12 has given up more sacks this year.
On the other side, Cowboy defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer is a crafty one. The wily veteran put together a great game plan last year, with his defense seemingly moving at the snap to exactly where the ball was going, forcing four interceptions. His scheme features lots of looks and has defenders moving all over the field. The key is to take the space that they give you. The defensive line was hit hard by graduation and has been rebuilt. Linebacker Devante Everette, #40, is very active. Free safety Jordan Sterns, #13, leads the team in tackles. The Frogs’ newly-found power running game will be a great counter to some of OSU’s antics. I like the screen game as well, with short passes short-circuiting the Cowboys’ penchant for jumping routes and playing aggressively in the secondary.
After last year’s loss to OSU, which took the Frogs out of the College Football Playoff picture, TCU should be hyped and ready for this one.
Oklahoma State is off next Saturday. They’ll finish up the season at Oklahoma on December 3. The Frogs head to Austin next Friday to take on Texas (but I bet you knew that!)
Oh yeah, I almost forgot. OSU’s James Washington hails from Stamford, Texas, which also happens to be the hometown of TCU alum and 1971 Masters Champion Charles Coody, who was a standout quarterback for Stamford High School back in the 1950s.
Kick ‘Em High!
John Denton has been the color analyst for the TCU Sports Network from IMG since 1988. A former standout for the Horned Frog football team, Denton went from walk-on to a four-year lettermen as a kicker and punter for the Purple and White from 1981-84 and completed his career at the 1984 Bluebonnet Bowl. Shown here with his former coach, the late Jim Wacker, Denton currently serves as the Director of Major Gifts for TCU Athletics.
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Today is March 30, and I wake up in Manhattan on a historic day for TCU Basketball. It’s also the latest date that TCU Basketball has ever played a game. Heck, the Masters is next week!! Tonight’s NIT Championship final vs. Georgia Tech is the last game in a “Season of Firsts” under new head coach Jamie Dixon.
When I was a kid, there were two Saturday afternoon television shows that used to draw my attention because of the variety of topics they would cover: The CBS Sports Spectacular and ABC’s Wide World of Sports. I wonder if today’s kids and millennials know of the guy spiraling off the ski jump in the Wide World of Sports opener