I'm wearing black today, because you wear black to funerals. This funeral however, isn't for a loved one. It's for something that kept us from a loved one. The offseason is gone, gone, gone. It was the wicked witch to college football's Dorothy.
That being said, it does deserve a lookback, at the good, the bad, and the signs for what's to come.
TCU players kept out of trouble this offseason, a refreshing change of pace from recent years past. Instead of scandal, this offseason was riddled with news about how level-headed Boykin has stayed despite the hype, how the defense was coming along, and how the Frogs were No. 2 in the preseason AP Poll.
With all the hype comes a responsibility, though. That responsibility is to meet expectations. We'll see how that part goes in just a few days.
Several players transferred out, including Jordan Moore and Cameron Echols-Luper. Luper's loss is the bigger of the two, simply because he had solidified his role as elite punt returner. Unfortunately, that role wasn't big enough, as he's now working to play QB at Arkansas State.
The transfer will force an inexperienced returner into that role, with signs pointing to Kavonte Turpin as being the next man up.
Also along "bad" lines are the loss of defensive coordinator Dick Bumpas, who retired after 11 years by Patterson's side. Not to mention the banged up receiving core, with Deante Gray unlikely to play against Minnesota while he recovers from knee surgery, and Josh Doctson deals with a hand injury.
The Hints At Greatness
Year two in the Meacham and Cumbie system seems to indicate that the offense will be even better than last season. With the way Boykin has worked this offseason and how Patterson pushes his defense during practice, the offense has worked to expand the playbook and become faster and more efficient. If they can do that against a Patterson defense in practice (regardless of experience level on that side of the ball), they should be able to get into a great rhythm early and often.
The big question about Mike Freeze is this: is his place atop the depth chart at linebacker due to a dearth of talent, or is he simply that good? I tend to lean towards the latter, and if he's good enough to start for Patterson as a true freshman, he could be the next in a long line of NFL linebackers to come out of TCU.
But for now, let's focus on MInnesota. Game previews, Q&As, and tons of #content are coming your way this week.
Prepare yourself. Football is here.