Brandon Bowen feels like the forgotten player at defensive end, but the uber talented redshirt freshman could make a huge impact - if he gets healthy.
Boesen’s pass rushing ability surprised many, leading TCU with 11.5 sacks last season. Improving on that number will be difficult for anyone, but defensive tackle L.J. Collier -- Boesen’s likely replacement -- might come close. Collier tallied four sacks in 2017, a respectable number for a tackle with fewer opportunities to pressure opposing quarterbacks.
There is competition, however. Baylor transfer Brandon Bowen may contend when he’s able to fully practice by fall camp (shoulder). Michael Epley was a sack machine at Tyler Junior College and might raise eyebrows this spring as well. Sophomore Gary Overshown should receive looks as well, and linebacker Ty Summers could be re-evaluated after TCU looked into moving him to defensive end last spring.
Could Taye Barber have the kind of impact on TCU Football as a freshman that Turp did? Sounds like it.
Patterson also praised tight end Pro Wells, who along with Barber, is one of four first-year players who enrolled in January and working out during spring camp. The others are offensive tackle Anthony McKinney, who transferred from Iowa Western Community College, and quarterback Justin Rogers. Patterson credited a new rule that allows teams to hold two hours of walk through workouts each week for helping the young players to get up to speed.
”Taye Barber Is not really a freshman anymore,” he said. “He’s had an unbelievable two practices. [The walk-through rule] has benefited us already in the spring.”
Robinson has the benefit of having prepared for, played, and won a collegiate football game in the Big 12. But he will have plenty of competition as he works to win, and keep, the starting job.
“He’s started a game and won it,” he said. “He learned how to manage and prepare for a ball game. That was the best part about it. To go on the road to a place like Lubbock and be the starting quarterback is a hard to do. He threw the ball, missed a couple routes, but he found a way to win the ball game.”
He learned that preparing for a game the week before is an important factor for a quarterback. He also learned that even at 225 pounds, he can’t run over everyone anymore.
”He learned you need to get down. You can’t run over everybody,” Patterson said. “It doesn’t matter if you’re 220 [pounds]. Everybody has got big guys. You’ve got to get down.”
I agree with Mac (gulp); if GP is telling the truth, he needs to fight.
“Our outside doctors, they decide those things; they say (players) are released, if they say they can’t play, they can’t play,” Patterson said. “If they can, it comes down to the student-athlete. We’ve never changed from the philosophy. It’s what we do.”
It’s what most college programs do.
From a young age, well before they reach college, a player learns this is standard football practice; that if they don’t play through pain or problems, they might lose their chance to start, and to play.
Here is an uncomfortable truth about nearly all college football coaches, including Patterson: On some level, they all have bullying characteristics. Because it’s football on an absurdly competitive level.
People in positions such as Patterson, or high levels of leadership, do not advance to this level of such a paranoid world without hurting a few feelings.
The Frogs are clicking at the right time... will it be enough to help them advance in March Madness?
“Some people think that defense is just ‘oh we decided we wanted to play’. That’s certainly not the case,” Dixon said. “There’s technique, there’s habits, schemes. I think we have a good understanding of what we’re trying to do now, I really do believe we have a good understanding, across the board.”
As good as TCU is offensively -- second in the conference in scoring, and leading the Big 12 in field goal percentage and three-point percentage -- the fact that they’ve finally flipped the switch defensively could make them very dangerous in the postseason.
”I think we could be a problem, in the postseason, because of our offensive balance, and our defensive intensity that’s picked up,” Williams said. “So I think that we could be a problem.”