Someone, not named Mason, is all in on the Kenny Hill hype-train? Oh.
Single: TCU. I’m all the way in on post-hype Kenny Hill, who could make the Horned Frogs the Big 12’s biggest wild card if he finds some measure of consistency in his final go-round as a college quarterback. Head coach Gary Patterson needs to get his defense out of its two-year funk, and that Week 2 trip to Arkansas will be a tone-setter.
Oh no, and now Herbie liked TCU, picking the Frogs to beat OU in the Big 12 Championship Game.. This can’t be good.
Big 12 TCU over Oklahoma
Sleeper: Kansas State
The TCU/OU games have been a ton of fun, but the Frogs have only broken through for one W in five years of Big 12 play. Can they get over the hump, on the road, in 2017?
All five Big 12 matchups between TCU and Oklahoma have been decided by seven points or less. Games between the Frogs and the Sooners always make for an exciting contest. Pulling this one out in Norman will be difficult. This is the hardest game on TCU’s schedule to predict. Poor clock management or a bad play call from Lincoln Riley could easily cost the Sooners.
Score: Oklahoma 49, TCU 41
Hill, Hicks, and Turpin form a dangerous triumvirate of talented, multi-dimensional players. But, after injury plagued seasons a year ago, can they stay healthy and effective for 12 games... and beyond?
Patterson’s running game pleases him. The tailbacks, led by Hicks, are talented. Plus if Hill is used as a zone-read weapon, the runners could be very difficult to stop.
Hicks rushed for 1,042 yards and 12 touchdowns last year. He also scored two touchdowns via passes with 427 yards in receptions. His 47 catches were a team high. And his 1,483 all-purpose yards are the most of any returning Big 12 player.
Pro Football Focus studied video of all league runners last year. Hicks forced 51 missed tackles, tops among all Big 12 backs. Of those 51, 15 were missed by defenders trying to tackle him after he caught a pass.
TCU also will be getting back the services of Shaun Nixon, who missed last season with a knee injury. Nixon, at one time, was listed as the starting slot back. He was second on the team in receptions in 2015 behind All-American Josh Doctson. He’ll see action at both tailback and slot this fall.
“I think we’ve got the best running backs in the Big 12. Period,” TCU co-offensive coordinator Curtis Luper told Diehards.com. “I mean, that could be your headline.”
Does anyone have a tougher three game stretch to open conference play than the Frogs?
TCU has one of the toughest starts to conference play of any team in the Big 12. They play at Oklahoma State, home against West Virginia, and then on the road against Kansas State. All three of those teams are on our list with aspirations of winning the Big 12 conference and two of them are on the road. That’s as tough an opening stretch as it gets. If the Horned Frogs are not clicking early, then any hopes of even sniffing the College Football Playoff will be a distant memory by early October. TCU does not have time to try and gel if its serious about having that special kind of season.