2009 record: 12-1, 8-0 (1st in Mountain West)
2009 bowl: Lost to Boise State 17-10 in Fiesta
2009 final AP/coaches' ranking: 6/6
Coach: Gary Patterson (85-28, 10th year)
Co-offensive coordinator: Jarrett Anderson (2nd year) and Justin Fuente (2nd year)
Defensive coordinator: Dick Bumpas (7th year)
Returning offensive starters: 9
Returning defensive starters: 7
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
Stadium: Amon G. Carter Stadium (grass; 44,008)
Last league title: 2009
2010 schedule: [view]
2010 roster: [view]
2009 statistics: [view]
Offensive: TCU’s football brand is synonymous with defense, but let’s not overlook the Horned Frogs’ offense. After all, in case you’ve forgotten, they averaged 38 points per game last season. Senior quarterback Andy Dalton, a fourth-year starter, deserves better than his well-worn reputation as a game-manager. Last season, he displayed big-play ability and had just eight interceptions. He will be working with some of the Mountain West Conference’s best receivers, including big-play junior Antoine Hicks, who scored 10 touchdowns, and senior Jeremy Kerley. Sophomore running back Matthew Tucker looks to build upon an excellent freshman season. Four starters return to the offensive line, including all-conference senior center Jake Kirkpatrick.
Defensive: Seven starters return from a unit that led the nation in total defense (allowing just 239.7 yards per game). Unfortunately, none of them are named Jerry Hughes. The Horned Frogs will certainly miss Hughes, the pass-rushing terror who is off to the NFL, but there are nice returning bookends in senior Wayne Daniels and junior Baylon Broughton. TCU also will rely on two linebackers, junior Tank Carder and sophomore Tanner Brock, to cover the field and provide leadership. TCU employs a five-man secondary and three starters return, including senior All-American candidate Tejay Johnson at free safety. Junior cornerback Greg McCoy, the team’s fastest player, is a potential star.
Specialists: Kerley is among the nation’s top return men, averaging 14.4 yards on punts and 26.6 yards on kickoffs. The kicking game is in great shape with junior place-kicker Ross Evans and junior punter Anson Kelton, who dropped 19 punts inside the 20-yard line and really set up TCU’s defense.
Coaching: Under Gary Patterson the Horned Frogs have defeated Oklahoma, Texas Tech, Stanford, Boise State and Clemson. Had Texas not rallied with a final-play field goal in the Big 12 title game, the Horned Frogs very well could have been playing for a national title last season. Patterson has resisted the urge to chase a bigger job because he believes the biggest goals can be achieved at TCU. You know what? He’s right.
Heisman hopefuls: It’s probably a long shot, but you must consider Dalton, the Mountain West's offensive player of the year. If the Horned Frogs can run the table, and Dalton plays to his capabilities, he will be in the discussion.
Next up: No. 4 Oklahoma
DPS: Alabama head coach Nick Saban was recently trash-talked by colleagues, and he tells Dan Patrick he wishes he was spoken to in private prior to the insults.
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Video: Football from NBC Sports
Saban hurt by colleagues' comments?
DPS: Alabama head coach Nick Saban was recently trash-talked by colleagues, and he tells Dan Patrick what he think of these comments.
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