TCU football will kick off the 2023 season with back-to-back homes. After the Horned Frogs battle future Big 12 Conference foe Colorado, TCU will host a nonconference matchup against Nicholls State on Saturday, Sept. 9 at 7 p.m. The Colonels finished with a 3-8 overall record last season, recording wins over Houston Christian, McNeese State and Texas A&M-Commerce. Nicholls State will represent the Southland Conference in the Week 2 contest.
The Colonels have won two conference titles since 2018 as well as six all-time appearances in the NCAA Division I FCS Championship tournament. Nicholls State lost several key starters on the offensive side of the football including quarterback Kohen Granier as well as leading wide receiver and former TCU student-athlete Al’Dontre Davis. Leading rusher Julien Gums also departs, paving the way for running back Collin Guggenheim (543 yards and four touchdowns) to be the team’s lead back. Wide receivers Neno Lemay (291 yards and one touchdown) and Terry Matthews (245 yards and two touchdowns) as well as tight end Lee Negrotto (215 yards and two touchdowns) are the team’s top returning pass catchers.
Junior quarterback Leonard Kelly is a candidate to take over as the starting quarterback for the Colonels this season. The Edna Karr alum appeared in five games last season, throwing for 381 yards and rushing for one touchdown in limited work. Nicholls has four quarterbacks on the roster including Southern Illinois transfer Jakob Foss and Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College transfer Pat McQuaide. The Colonels return key starters on defense including defensive lineman Perry Ganci, who led the team with four sacks last season.
Linebackers Eli Ennis (45 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks and seven quarterback hits), Brandon Lairy (60 tackles and 4.5 tackles for loss) and Kylin White (79 tackles, five quarterback hits and three tackles for loss) return in the middle of the Colonel defense. Nicholls State also returns defensive back Tyler Morton (71 tackles, three pass breakups and two interceptions) to lead the Colonel secondary. Specialists including kicker Gavin Lasseigne (10-for-16 on field goals and) and punter Kylan Dupre (40.2 yards per punt) are back in the fold for 2023. The Colonels are led by ninth-year head coach Tim Rebowe.