Coach Patterson and Coach Bielema have had some similarities in their careers, and now their teams meet for the second time.
The competing coaches crossed paths in the 2011 Rose Bowl. TCU coach Gary Patterson prevailed in that one, 21-19, over former Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema, who took over the Arkansas program in the 2013 season. Both coaches built their reputations as defensive coordinators before becoming head coaches. Bielema served as Kansas State’s co-defensive coordinator in 2002-03 and oversaw Wisconsin’s defense in 2004-05 before taking over the program in 2006. Patterson played at Kansas State (1980-81) and served as a graduate assistant as his alma mater (1982) before becoming defensive coordinator at Sonoma (Calif.) State (1989-91), New Mexico (1996-97) and TCU (1998-2000). He took over the Frogs’ program for the 2001 season.
This is more good work from McGalliard. The Frogs have to stop the running game of Arkansas if they want to win this one, and against this running back duo (Rawleigh Williams and Kody Walker), it’s going to be a tall task.
Williams carried the ball 24 times last week, and he's just one part of a skilled group of running backs in this offense. Kody Walker was granted a sixth year of eligibility after missing his first two seasons because of injury, and even though he only started one game last year, he was put on the preseason Doak Walker Award watch list.
Hill and Taj Williams were definitely on the same page last Saturday.
Hill used him twice to convert a third down, and four other catches also produced a first down. Another long catch by the 6-foot-4 wide receiver was wiped out by a penalty. Only on two attempts did he and Hill fail to connect.
TCU voice John Denton played against Arkansas when the Frogs and Hogs shared a conference, and he’s excited to see them get back after it again.
"For whatever reason we never saw them in a bowl game, we never scheduled 'em non-conference, so, it's a great opportunity, and it'll be loud here," Denton predicts.
Patterson suggested that the offense needs to open up more and keep tacklers off of Hicks.
“He took a lot of hits, I thought,” Patterson said Tuesday at his weekly media luncheon. “Harder hits than what you want your running back to take when you’ve got it all spread out. We’ve got to get to where he doesn’t take the hits.”
If TCU can get to Austin Allen early and often, the Frogs will have the upper hand in this matchup.
Arkansas offensive coordinator Dan Enos called Allen’s play against Louisiana Tech “average.”
He’s going to have to be better than average for Arkansas to have a chance against the Horned Frogs.
Yes, there were dropped balls. Yes, he was under lots of pressure because of poor pass protection. But Allen made costly mistakes. Both of his interceptions resulted in Louisiana Tech touchdowns. The second pick shifted the momentum back to the Bulldogs after Arkansas had taken hold of it.
You can survive — albeit barely — a few interceptions against Louisiana Tech. Even one such mistake against TCU could be fatal.