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TCU vs. South Dakota State: Six Players to Watch

The Frogs’ first game of 2016 comes against an FCS opponent, but there are still some interesting names to keep an eye on.

NCAA Football: South Dakota State at Kansas John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

It’s the first game of the season, which means its our first real look at TCU football in 2016. There are a lot of good storylines heading into this one, but here are six players to keep an eye on as TCU and South Dakota State battle on Saturday night.

Three SDSU Players To Watch

  1. Jake Wieneke | WR - Wieneke is an elite receiver for SDSU, bringing in over 1,400 yards receiving and 11 touchdowns in 2015. He’ll be an early test for Ranthony Texada, who, coming off an ACL injury in 2015, will be seeing his first game-action since SMU last year. This is definitely a matchup to watch.
  2. Taryn Christion | QB - The sophomore has earned the starting job after splitting much of the 2015 season with Zach Lujan. Christion is a legitimate dual-threat quarterback, and will be a good sample of what TCU will see throughout the season with the likes of Patrick Mahomes and Baker Mayfield. Christion isn’t on that level, but it’s good for the Frogs’ D to see a similar style early, so Patterson can make notes of how they play/react. Sure, they’ve been lining up against Kenny Hill in camp, but they weren’t allowed to hit him.
  3. Jesse Bobbit | LB - Bobbit was second on the Jackrabbits with 97 tackles in 2015, and he’s expected to anchor the linebacking unit this season. It’ll be a fun matchup to see him take on the TCU running game, and how he handles the TCU slot receivers if he’s forced into coverage.

Three TCU Players To Watch

  1. Joseph Broadnax | DT - Broadnax won the starting DT job in camp, beating out Chris Bradley, L.J. Collier, freshman Ross Blacklock, and Breylin Mitchell. Now, it’s time to see what he can do in a game situation. The expectation against a team like SDSU is that Broadnax and his counterpart Aaron Curry should be able to disrupt the Jackrabbit’s offense consistently, collapsing the pocket and stopping the run.
  2. Jeff Gladney | CB - Like Broadnax, Gladney beat out several guys for the starting job in camp, and now he gets his first game action as a starter. While SDSU doesn’t have much receiving depth behind Wieneke, Gladney will undoubtedly face off against the elite SDSU receiver at certain points in the game. Keep an eye on how he handles that matchup, because if he’s successful that could signal how he handles some of the incredible receiver talent in the Big 12.
  3. Kenny Hill | QB - I mean, we can’t do this first list and omit the new starting QB! Keep an eye on Hill and look for a few things: Is he making the right reads? Is he getting happy feet or is he standing tall in the pocket? Is he getting the ball out on time? If he’s doing these things, he’ll have a successful day.