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Big 12 Media Days: Five Questions and How to Watch

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GP keeps things close to the vest... but maybe we will get some answers to TCU Football’s biggest questions.

TCU Football vs Texas Tech | October 11, 2018 | Fort Worth, TX
TCU Football vs Texas Tech | October 11, 2018 | Fort Worth, TX
Melissa Triebwasser

Big 12 Media Days is one of the most anticipated of all the major conferences, as the league is home to some of the most recognizable and talented coaches in the country. With returning veterans like Gary Patterson being flanked by up-and-comers like Matt Campbell, the two day circus Monday and Tuesday is sure to leave us with plenty of interesting tidbits.

Here are some of the questions we will be trying to get answered Monday, and how you can keep up with the events as well.

  • Which quarterback takes the first snap on August 31st?

It’s been well documented that the Horned Frogs have some questions at the quarterback position, with five guys on scholarship and no real clue as to which has the inside track on being named the starter during fall camp.

Kansas State graduate transfer Alex Delton would appear to be in the lead based on experience, but redshirt freshman Justin Rogers, true freshman Max Duggan, and Ohio State transfer Matthew Baldwin are all looking to knock him out of the lead. And don’t forget Michael Collins, who showed some promise in limited action last season before being hurt himself.

In that vein, questions about the health of Rogers and Collins will certainly be asked, as will the progress of Baldwin’s eligibility waiver. Judging by past experiences, we probably won’t know much more in any of these areas than we did going in - but, it’s still worth asking.

  • Will Sewo Olonilua be on the team in August?

The senior running back was arrested on a felony drug charge shortly after graduating last spring, and little information has come out since in regards to his standing in the program.

Sewo has been, by all accounts, nothing but a great kid both on and off the field prior to this event, and, considering the nature of what was found in his vehicle that led to the charge, this very well could end in a minimal suspension. It appears that Patterson and TCU are content at this time to led the justice system run its course and react from there, but hopefully we will know more by Monday evening.

  • How do you replace two (more) all-conference defensive ends?

The Frogs have had a run of pass-rushers that is the envy of the rest of the Big 12, and head into 2019 with more questions on the defensive line than in recent memory.

Ochaun Mathis was the name folks couldn’t stop talking about in fall camp a year ago, and now the redshirt freshman appears primed to start alongside Corey Bethley and Ross Blacklock as part of a menacing (on paper) defensive front.

But who will be his running mate on the opposite side?

Transfer Shameik Blackshear appears to be the early favorite, and behind him are a bunch of guys who haven’t hardly taken a snap at the Division I level. How confident does GP feel in a unit that should lead the charge for what should be a(nother) really good defense?

  • Are these veer rumors for real?

If you believe Ian Boyd, the TCU offense will look a little different in 2019, as Sonny Cumbie and the Frogs look to add elements of the Briles’ Veer and Shoot to the “Frog Raid” system that has worked pretty well... until it didn’t.

The hiring of Malcolm Kelly not only has been a boon on the recruiting trail - the former Oklahoma WR has a lot of experience in spread-ISO offenses and has apparently brought that knowledge to Fort Worth, according to Patterson. “The new WR coach, one of the reasons why we hired him is having some thought process from when he was at Houston and he was at Arkansas State, some of the things...both of those do a good job of throwing the football so...”

There are not many college football coaches more paranoid than Gary Patterson, so it’s doubtful he’s willing to reveal much in this department. But, maybe, just maybe, we get a little sparkle in the eye and a “we’ll see” when he’s inevitably asked about it.

  • As the longest tenured coach in the conference, what’s Gary Patterson’s long-term plan?

Gary Patterson is 59 years old - not past his prime by any stretch, nor nearing the end of a typical coach’s career. But, those around Fort Worth have heard the whispers and know that GP doesn’t want to spend all of his good years on the sideline.

Patterson is fully invested at TCU - the man has a statue already, for goodness sake - but it’s hard not to think that we could be on the downward slope of his career as a head football coach.

Signed through 2024, there’s no reason to believe he would walk away before then. But five years isn’t all that long in this landscape, and you have to wonder if retirement has crossed his mind. Involved in a bunch of charitable causes, with a love of traveling and a burgeoning wedding singer career (kidding! mostly), is it time to start asking if he’s thought about what’s next?

I won’t be the one to ask him, but someone probably will.

If you want to see it happen, here’s what you need to know.

How to Watch:

Monday, July 15th: Kansas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, TCU, and Texas Tech

Location: AT&T Stadium (Arlington, TX)

Time: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. CT

TV: 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. (CT) on FS2, FCS Central & regional affiliates.

Follow along on the web: www.big12sports.com

Tuesday, July 16th: Baylor, Iowa State, Kansas State, Texas, and West Virginia

Location: AT&T Stadium (Arlington, TX)

Time: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. CT

TV: 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. (CT) on FS2, FCS Central & regional affiliates.

Follow along on the web: www.big12sports.com