TCU strung together arguably its most dominant performance in recent history during the first half of the Horned Frog victory against Baylor this past weekend. TCU slowed down in the second half, but we’ll see whether or not the Horned Frogs can build on their strong start against the Bears when they host Texas Tech at Amon G. Carter Stadium on Saturday.
The Horned Frogs are an unprecedented 0-3 at home, something that hasn’t happened at TCU since 1997, when the Horned Frogs went 1-10 overall. Fortunately, Texas Tech hasn’t played well on the road this season, posting an 0-2 record with losses against Kansas State and Iowa State. The Red Raiders are also coming off a 62-28 thrashing at the hands of the Oklahoma Sooners, who compiled 559 yards on offense in the game.
TCU and Texas Tech have been evenly matched over the last two seasons, with both contests being decided by three points or less. The Horned Frogs appear to be trending in the right direction offensively, and a victory over the Red Raiders would elevate TCU to the middle of the pack in the Big 12 Conference standings. Here are three key matchups to watch when the two rival schools battle in Hell’s Half Acre this weekend.
Terrell Cooper vs. Jack Anderson
The Horned Frogs receiving some sobering news on defense before kickoff against Baylor, as senior defensive tackle Corey Bethley reportedly suffered a season-ending knee injury. Bethley represented TCU’s most experience interior lineman, but with him out of the lineup, Terrell Cooper will need to step up as the team’s top defensive tackle. Cooper played well against the Bears, totaling four tackles as well as his first sack of the season.
Pro Wells vs. Thomas Leggett
The Red Raiders have been victimized by opposing tight ends all season. Kansas State’s Briley Moore, Iowa State’s Chase Allen and Oklahoma’s Austin Stogner have all had big games against Texas Tech this season, scoring touchdowns over the middle of the field on a vulnerable Red Raider secondary. Pro Wells has become TCU’s No. 1 tight end with Artayvious Lynn sidelined with an injury, and while Wells has been a top red-zone threat in the past, he’s been very quiet in that department this season.
Dee Winters vs. Henry Colombi
Colombi has taken over as Texas Tech’s starting quarterback after the team lost Alan Bowman to an injury. Colombi had two passed tipped that resulted in interceptions against Oklahoma, with Sooner defensive back Tre Norwood snatching both balls over the middle. Dee Winters has been excellent opposite Garret Wallow this season, compiling 31 total tackles and two passes defensed through five games. One of head coach Gary Patterson’s hybrid safety-linebacker types, Winters could be the player to take advantage of poor passes over the middle of the field.