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Three up, three down: Evans and Johnston are those dudes

The future is bright in Fort Worth

NCAA Football: Louisiana Tech at Texas Christian Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The universe is finally back in order, as the Frogs are heading into bowl season having won five of their last six games. After TCU missed the postseason a year ago, 6-4 feels pretty good, especially given the Max heart condition, Covid-19 precautions, and everything else the Frogs have been through this year.

On Saturday, TCU put an utter beat down on Louisiana Tech at Amon G. Carter Stadium. It felt like everyone was having the game of their life, as the Frogs had basically everything fall their way.

Because of that, zero TCU players will be in my three down section for the first time all season. You’ll still want to keep reading, though, as I have a lot of good things to say about the Frogs and some negative things about a few other figures around college football.

Three Up:

1. C.J. Ceasar

He’s been on my three down list twice this year, and he probably should have been on it a third time. To put it point blank, Ceasar was not ready to start at corner in 2020.

With that being said, he has continually run onto the field and given it his all, and for that, I applaud him.

This determination paid off for the corner on Saturday, as he grabbed TWO interceptions in the blowout win over the Bulldogs.

The first one came early in the game off of a tipped pass. Ceasar stayed focused on where the ball was, made the pick, then juked his way for a nice 17-yard return to put TCU at the LA Tech 8 yard line.

Two plays later, Mad Max scored his 10th rushing touchdown of the season.

The second interception came early in the third quarter. This time, no tip was needed. Ceasar read the quarterback perfectly, grabbing his second pick of the day and giving the Frogs field position in enemy territory once again.

The offense would score again following the turnover, courtesy of a 38-yard run by Kendre Miller, and Ceasar’s interceptions went a perfect 2/2 on leading to touchdowns.

Especially given the fact that he will likely start in TCU’s bowl game, Ceasar needed a performance like this to get his confidence up. Gary Patterson even echoed that after the game, calling the two interceptions “a blessing in the positive” for the corner.

To make things even better, as I was writing this article, Ceasar was named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week.

2. Zach Evans

Dang, this kid is special.

This was not the first time Zach Evans had rushed for 100 yards or even done things that wowed us, but it did feel like the first time that the true freshman proved that he was the best running back in Fort Worth.

From the start of Saturday’s game, it was clear Evans had come to play. On his first carry, he took off for 23 yards to put TCU on the doorstep of the red zone just moments into the game.

The running back would score his first touchdown of the night early in the second quarter, but it was the second half when he really put on a show.

On the very first play from scrimmage of the third quarter, Evans burst down the left sideline, beating several Bulldog defenders to the house for a 75-yard touchdown.

Along with the two scores, the five-star recruit racked up a career-high 130 yards on just seven carries in the game.

Though Evans was just one piece in TCU’s monster day on the ground (333 rushing yards), the young star seemed to have shown everyone just who should be starting at running back in 2021.

3. Quentin Johnston

Like Evans, Johnston shows the potential of a player who could end his career at TCU as an all-time great.

At times this year, the wideout has struggled with ball control. Other times, Duggan has missed him on deep balls. When the two have connected, though, it’s been fun to watch.

Oh boy, did they connect on Saturday night. After TCU forced LA Tech to punt for a third time in four drives (the fourth had been a pick), Duggan took a shot deep right to Johnston. The young wide receiver caught the pass through a pass interference penalty, left his defender in the dust, and waltzed into the endzone.

Johnston then took a bow in what felt like one of the most dominant moments a TCU player had produced all season.

A few drives later, the receiver took a handoff from the Bulldogs’ 1 yard line, spun off a defender, and scored his second touchdown of the day.

The freshman finished with a game-high five catches and a career-high 130 yards receiving. After recording 114 yards last week against OSU, he becomes the first Horned Frog to total 100 yards receiving in consecutive games since Josh Doctson in 2015.

Johnston finishes the regular season with a season-high 487 yards on just 22 receptions. In factr, his stats look a lot like Doctson’s in his first year at TCU.

I’m not saying Quentin Johnston will be a Biletnikoff Trophy Finalist while he’s a Frog, but…..

Three Down:

1. Injuries

Injuries suck. We all hate them. Even when on the opposing team, they just put a downer on everything.

In that vein, seeing Bulldog quarterback Luke Anthony suffer that brutal leg injury on Saturday was very sad. Though this is his senior year, we can all hope that his recovery is swift and full.

2. The Big Ten

Ohio State doesn’t meet the game requirement for the Big Ten Championship, so the conference changed the requirement. What?!

As GP would say, “It’s all about selling t-shirts.”

Put Coastal Carolina in, cowards.

3. Coronavirus

Guys like Garrett Wallow didn’t get to have a proper senior day, all interviews had to be over Zoom, and the Carter could only hold 25% capacity this season…all because of Coronavirus.

You hate to see it.

But hey, TCU got to play 10 games. The Frogs are going bowling. Life is good.