The injury bug has hit the Frogs this spring, decimating the cornerbacks significantly in the early goings.
The importance of cornerback can’t be undersold to Patterson. He tied TCU’s bowl appearance last season to Lewis’ early return from an Achilles injury that was expected to make him miss the entire season.
“I think if Julius doesn’t come back, I’m not sure we win six games, to be honest with you,” Patterson said. “It was hard on him. And we really appreciate that he did it. Because he didn’t have to do it.”
GP wants Kenny Hill to get his swag back, but is impressed with the work new offensive line coach Chris Thomsen is doing so far.
“Some of the younger guys are getting more and more reps,” Patterson said. “You don’t have [Austin] Schlottman out there right now or Cordel [Iwuagwu]…but like you do every spring, if a guy is down on offense or defense, the next guy is getting his chance to come up and get some reps.”
Patterson highlighted sophomore Lucas Niang as one of the younger offensive linemen who is benefiting from extra practice. TCU recruited Niang as the No. 1 offensive tackle in the state of Connecticut among the 2016 class.
Ah, the chip on the shoulder and us against the world talk has begun. But for a TCU team that hasn’t won... well, anything really, it might actually be deserved.
“We had one of the highest RPIs in the NIT field and we were ranked as a No. 4 seed,” Parrish said. “They put us as the underdog and it’s a sign of disrespect. So we’re going to go out there with a chip on our shoulder. We’re not going to go in thinking about being a higher seed.”
There are perks to playing late into March, and Coach Dixon plans to make memories while on this special trip.
“We’ve done this a lot, been to New York a bunch,” Dixon said. “We’ve got a dinner planned, which is part of the NIT. We’re working on arrangements to go to the 9/11 site ... We’ll eat at the cart on the side of the road with the gyros. That was a tradition of ours at Pitt, so we’ll do that as well: a late-night gyro before they go to bed. That will be structured and coordinated through the staff. But a lot of good things are planned. It’s a special place in March. There’s no other place I’d rather be.”
The Frogs have some international games scheduled for the summer, and it looks like Fish should be all clear to participate.
“In 12 weeks, we’re told he can play. It’s six weeks until he can do some ball-handling and shooting drills,” Dixon said. “As we talked about it, it kind of works with our schedule this summer. We’ll probably have July practices, then we’ll get after it a little bit more after that. As far as what we’ll do going forward, he’s going to be right on pace.”
It’s a huge series for both clubs, who have expectations of Omaha on their minds. Th Cowboys have been hot, while the Frogs bats have been struggling. The atmosphere in Fort Worth should be electric.
“It’s a good feel, because TCU is a very good ball club,” OSU sophomore and Edmond native Colin Simpson said. “It’s very nice to go into TCU with an eight-game win streak and have all that confidence. It’s going to be a great series.
“I’m definitely looking forward to it. I’ve heard rumors that this series has been sold out for two months now, so it should be a big, hyped-up series. It should be a lot of fun.”
Sometimes weird baseball stuff is cute. This is just a great reason to sweep the Cowboys this weekend *eye roll*.
Harambe is junior right-hander Jake Cowan’s responsibility for now after he pitched the final 1 1/3 innings of Bedlam. Cobb has made his duties clear for the road trip to Fort Worth.
“Make sure he doesn’t stay on the bus if it’s too hot outside,” Cobb said. “You gotta bring him to practice, or you can leave him in your hotel room. You take care of him in the hotel. You give him a chair, tuck him in bed when you’re gone.
“Don’t want PETA to get on us or any of the animal rights activists ’cause we love Harambe.”