December 11, 2020
Before we get started with this weekend’s events, let me pay homage to another TCU Basketball great who we lost this week.
Eugene “Goo” Kennedy died early last Tuesday. Kennedy played one memorable season at TCU in 1970-71. He was named TCU’s MVP and the Southwest Conference Player of the Year in helping the Frogs win a conference championship and reach the NCAA Tournament under coach Johnny Swaim. Kennedy finished his lone season averaging 20.4 points and 16.6 rebounds a game. He was inducted into the TCU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2003. I was fortunate to meet Goo when we inducted him into the Hall of Fame and he was genuinely thrilled to be honored by TCU.
He went on to a career in the ABA and NBA. I first saw him as a nine year-old when he played for the Dallas Chaparrals at the old Dallas Memorial Auditorium (now the Dallas Convention Center Arena). Rest in Peace, #55.
It’s a jam-packed, stacked up Saturday for Frog fans — the kind of day you live for if you’re fond of the Purple & White.
First, TCU Men’s Basketball tries to get back on track after two straight losses to OU and Providence. Defensive lapses and turnovers hurt the Frogs on Wednesday and they’ll need to get those fixed before facing the undefeated Texas A&M Aggies (remember them?) on Saturday at 1 p.m. CT at Dickie’s Arena. It will be the 165th all-time meeting between the Ags and the Frogs in a series that dates back to 1914 and the Southwest Conference. The Aggies can hit from 3-point land at 38 percent and they have four players averaging in double figures: Emanuel Miller leads the way at 22 points per game, but watch our for Quenton Jackson (14.7), Savion Flagg (12.3) and Andre Gordon (12). A&M head coach Buzz Williams, who once pursued the TCU job when it opened in 2008, is now the head man at Aggieland. Problem areas for A&M have been turnovers and fouls.
The Frogs are led by freshman Mike Miles who is off to a great start in his career at TCU, averaging 12.8 points. RJ Nembhard leads all Frogs scorers at 17.6 points. The Frogs are hoping to get PJ Fuller back for Saturday’s game. He missed the Providence game with a sore ankle.
After the basketball game at Dickie’s, you’ve got time to grab a beer and a sandwich at The Railhead and then head to Amon G. Carter Stadium.
The Frogs will play their 10th game of the year (can you believe it?) when they host Louisiana Tech Saturday at 6 p.m. CT.
Skip Holtz (Lou’s son) has done a great job as head coach at La Tech. The Bulldogs have gone to six straight bowl games and won them all. Last year, the topped Miami – yes, that Miami (The U) 14-0 in the Independence Bowl.
Offensively, they are led by grad transfer Luke Anthony, who started his career at Abilene Christian. The Bulldogs run a spread offense with a heave dose of the run mixed in. Running back Israel Tucker ran it 37 times last week against North Texas and you can bet the Frogs will see a big dose of him Saturday. La Tech features a nice set of wideouts including receiving leader Smoke Harris, who’s a deep threat, and former Frog Isaiah Graham, who has 14 catches on the year. They will spread the field and then hit you in the mouth with the run. Once in the red zone, the Bulldogs will bring in a tight end and an extra offensive tackle and go to the old-fashioned T formation, with three backs lined up next to one another four yards behind the quarterback. It’s a “Here we come, stop us if you can” approach to short yardage.
On defense, La Tech runs a 4-3 scheme that depends heavily on the linebackers to make plays behind a tough (and active) defensive line. Watch out for DT Milton Williams who likes to spend time in the opponent’s backfield. He’s dangerous.
The weather Saturday night at kickoff will be clear, dry and near 50, dropping into the 40s by the final gun.
We’re on the air on the Horned Frogs Sports Network for TCU Men’s Basketball at 12:30 p.m. on 570AM KLIF. Then on at 5 p.m. for TCU Football on WBAP 820 AM, Sirius 135, XM 200, the Riff Ram app and TuneIn. Join us for a full day of TCU action.