Here are your Monday links.
#DearAndy: Will TCU be a College Football Playoff favorite in 2015?:
From @KWright_Frog: Will TCU be a preseason playoff pick and Trevone Boykin a favorite for the 2015 Heisman?
Yes and yes, Kevin. The Horned Frogs could return as many as 16 starters from a team that went 11-1 during the regular season, so they’ll probably be the preseason favorite in the Big 12. And if you read this week’s Punt, Pass & Pork, you know Boykin is basically in the same -- albeit healthier -- place that Oregon’s Marcus Mariota was at this time last year.
Does that mean either dream will come true? Not necessarily. Oklahoma looked like the Big 12 frontrunner coming into this season, but the Sooners wound up losing four games. Baylor will lose quarterback Bryce Petty, but the Bears have proven adept at reloading under Art Briles. Texas should be better, and if the Longhorns find their quarterback of the future, they could contend quickly. Oklahoma might fare better without the weight of crushing expectations. So there are no guarantees, but TCU is as well positioned as anyone going into 2015.
As for Boykin’s Heisman chances, Mariota’s landslide win is encouraging. It seemed the past few years that the sports media culture had begun to move so quickly that preseason favorites were jettisoned from the race by October simply because we wanted to move on to the next thing. Mariota was the favorite going into 2014. He was the best player in ’14, and he won the trophy. If Boykin improves even slightly on this fall’s production (4,356 yards of total offense, 39 touchdowns accounted for) and the Frogs are as good as advertised, he’ll be in New York on Dec. 12, 2015 and the team will be in Miami Gardens, Fla., or Arlington, Texas, on New Year’s Eve.
Higher profile: TCU’s 11-1 season raises national standing:
“I don’t think it’s a long time,” Patterson said, asked how far away TCU is from that stature. “Oregon hasn’t been on the stage that long. They’re new. They’re new royalty. They’ve gained the respect of national media, and I think that’s what TCU has to do. For us, that could be as early as next year. It almost was this year.”
How Ole Miss and TCU can score (a little bit) on each other in the Peach Bowl
One area where TCU might be able to find some advantages is on the outside, matching up 6'4 WR Josh Doctson with 5'9 All-America corner Senquez Golson. Most teams have avoided Golson, but Doctson roasted similarly height-challenged Texas cornerback Quandre Diggs with four catches of 20 yards or more, many of them jump balls. On each, Diggs was well-positioned but unable to handle Doctson's reach and Boykin's ball placement.
If TCU can force Rebel safeties to assist against Doctson rather than race downhill, Ole Miss' system comes apart.
Grambling faces tall task at TCU:
The Horned Frogs are allowing just 58.7 points per game this season. TCU’s opponents are shooting a mere 33 percent from the field.