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Three Up, Three Down

The Ponies were pounded, and the Big 12 schedule looms. Who is looking good heading in to conference play, and who is cause for concern?

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Woof. The Ponies are... I've got nothing. The Frogs on the other hand, had some really nice moments after a brutal start. Let's look deeper at the best and the worst of a 56-0 Iron Skillet frying.

UP: James McFarland - Hoooooo boy McFarland balled out Saturday. The big junior DE absolutely dominated the game, with three sacks (of nine total!), two forced fumbles, and a huge tipped pass that ended the Pony's most promising drive and kept them off the scoreboard. McFarland basically camped out in the SMU backfield, and that poor walk-on QB will have nightmares about big #40 bearing down on him. Each of the three games has seen a different member of this deep and talented D-Line step up, which bodes very well for the coming weeks.

DOWN: The Secondary - It's a good thing the d-line pressured the heck out of Krstich, because when he had time, his receivers carved up the defensive backfield, especially from the slot. Fortunately, there weren't many times he dropped back to a clean pocket, and when push came to shove, the Frogs were able to stall drives and keep the Ponies off the board. The back end has looked better against better teams, so I'm guessing it's an aberration, but something to keep an eye on as the quality of quarterbacks, receivers, and o-lines improves. And yes, I am being very picky here.

UP: Deante' Gray - Welcome back, Deante'! After scoring on his first ever touch, on a punt return against Grambling three years ago, we haven't heard much from the speedster as he bounced between receiver and corner for TCU. Last year, Gray totaled eight receptions for just over 150 yards and no scores; yesterday he hauled in six for 96 and two touchdowns. Just like the d-line, each game brings a new star on the wide receiving corps, and with the way the ball is being spread around, that should continue.

DOWN: Jaden Oberkrom - The normally reliable kicking machine had quite possibly his worst day as a Horned Frog, missing a very make-able field goal, and having another blocked. He also had several short kick-offs, and just didn't look like himself all morning long. The block wasn't necessarily his fault, as protection was horrid, allowing the SMU player to slip through, but he has set the bar for himself so high, any mistake seems unfathomable. Oberkrom got some rest, as Ryan DeNucci took over kick-off duties late in the second half, and maybe the mental break will be as important as the physical. Kicking is a rhythm thing, so the bye weeks have possibly affected him. But we will need that big leg come conference play, so here's hoping he's back on track by Saturday.

UP: BJ Catalon - BJ had himself a game, rushing for 114 yards on 19 carries. I think that the college game is definitely moving towards a running back by committee approach, but I loved that Cumbie and Meacham established Catalon as the lead back early on, and kept feeding him the rock. The way he cut and shifted to get up field, and the patience he showed in identifying and bursting through holes yesterday were impressive. Aaron Greene had a great long run, and Kyle Hicks showed some flashes, but BJ was clearly the star and deserves to get those 15-20 carries a game into the next part of the schedule.

DOWN: SMU - I'm going to cheat the concept here, but we won 56-0 and I don't feel like nit-picking anymore. The Ponies came with everything they had, and kept TCU on the ropes... for one quarter. That's all their very best was good for. I don't want to beat a dead horse (ha!), but this program is an absolute disgrace. A competitive SMU is good for TCU and good for DFW, and wouldn't you rather the talented athletes in this area (that make the mistake of not playing for the Frogs) go to SMU rather than Baylor or other Big 12 schools? I really hope they make a good hire and bring some semblance of respect back to Dallas, because as much as I hate them, it's far more fun to hate when they actually have a shot at making things interesting.

HONORABLE MENTION UP: Trevone Boykin and Zach Allen Fake Chest Bump/Classy Handshake Celebration This went viral Saturday afternoon, and for good reason. It was awesome.