Friday, November 20, 2009

Spitblood Predictions: Wyoming

Friday traditions. When you were a kid, you're parents let you have a friend over to spend the night and order a pizza before watching TGIF. In high school, you had your school's football game before driving around doing nothing trying to find some booze before hitting up Taco Cabana right before curfew. In college, you had to nurse your hangover from Thursday night by not going to your Friday classes and then probably getting stoned. Now, though, you have to work like a sucker...but at least you have Spitblood predictions.

You know the drill: What's going to be the final score? Who's going to really stand out on offense, defense and special teams? If Ed Wesley is hurt, as is the rumor, who absorbs his touches/yards?

Also...since nearly nobody out there actually has The Mtn...let us know where you'll be watching the game.

Game 11 Preview: Wyoming Cowboys

Default Wyoming post pic

Another weekend, another biggest game of the year, this time it’s the Brokeback Bowl and, in truth, Heath Ledger’s corpse might have a better chance of surviving this one than freshman QB Austyn hyphen last name because, hey, at least he’s already dead. Seriously though, Laramie is a tougher place to play than most of us want to give it credit for – it’s the highest stadium altitude wise in the country, the Cowboys fans are apparently among the most vile, inbred, uneducated, and rambunctious around and, although you may not believe me, a team that was supposed finish dead last in the conference is now 5-5 and in reach of a bowl bid. It’s also not like they haven’t played a quality opponent this year, as Texas went up there in September and struggled for a half. I don’t expect us to have the same issues that the Horns did, but we’re not at the point in the season where we can take a team lightly, at least not until next week. note: I will almost immediately contradict this point.

Offense – By now a lot of you have probably heard the dirty, filthy rumor that Ed Wesley is done until the bowl game and is in need of a knee scope. While this may be true – I haven’t seen it 100% confirmed yet myself – in all fairness, if there’s a time for him to rehab a bit, it’s now. For one, Joseph Turner and Matthew Tucker are more than capable of filling the void, and we’ve all been waiting for Skye Dawson to have a chance to break out, so this could be it. Also, we haven’t thrown out the WildFrog wrinkle since BYU, and now that we’re playing a man down, this could be a fantastic opportunity for Fuente and Anderson to open up the playbook. Lastly, and most importantly, WHHD and TexasHammer are going to be in attendance and running on enough barenjager to fuel a locomotive, so if the offense somehow goes stagnant, I fully expect their presence alone to be enough to push us over the top. Bottom line, I’m not all that worried about Wesley missing this game or the one next week.

Enough about that though, let’s take a peek at the Cowboys and what they have on offense this season. As mentioned, they are starting a true freshman at QB who hasn’t been TERRIBLE, but hasn’t been great either, tossing 7 TDS and 3 INTs on the season. Overall, the Cowboys passing game ranks 93rd in the country with 201.3 yards per game and, while TCUs passing attack is the weakest point of our offense, we still best them by 20 yards and 21 spots in the rankings. The run game is also not going to impress anyone this year with the loss of Devin Moore as they are currently 79th in the country with 135.6 yards per contest. Overall, Wyoming has the 103rd ranked offense in the country and the 71st ranked points scoring offense at 17.6. Before coming from behind to beat San Diego State last weekend, the Cowboys played the meat of their conference schedule – at AFA, at Utah, vs BYU – and were outscored 84-10, although I’ll be fair and point out 52 of those came to BYU and they had very respectable losses to the other two. Are you scared of that? I’m not really, and I’m hungry, so let’s close this up.

Edge – Frogs

Defense – On defense, Wyoming is admittedly much more competent than they are on offense, but not much more. They give up 26.6 points a game – if you’ll recall, they only score 17.6, so crunch the numbers – and 387.2 yards total. Of those yards, 235 come through the air and 152 on the ground. That rush defense actually places them in the upper half in the country – and I use that very loosely as they’re barely on the cusp of that upper tier – and not having arguably our most explosive weapon in Ed Wesley certainly plays to their advantage. Unfortunately, that pass D does NOT play to their advantage, and, even though we’ve beaten teams on the ground more than through the air this season, going against this unit under these circumstances should be a big chance for Dalton and Young to shine. You may recall JYs performance last year against these guys – I’m pretty sure he remembers it as well. Do I expect him to automatically go out there and replicate what he did last year? Of course not, but he surely has the confidence, and he knows that the passing game is going to have to pick up some slack this week, so I expect Young to get more looks than he has in past weeks. Wyoming does pick off their share of passes though – 10 on the season – so it’s not like Andy can just fling the ball around like some sort of Brett Favre robot, but I think if we’re going to beat this team, the air is where it will have to happen.

I think I gave a pretty good recap of the current state of the Frogs defense in my anti-UT post earlier in the week, so just get the facts from there.

Edge – Frogs.

Special Teams – So far this year, the Air Force game has been the only one that we directly won due to special teams. They also had a really good defense and the weather was far worse than it is forecast to be this weekend. I don’t think they are going to make the difference this weekend.

Edge – N/A, but probably Frogs.

Overall – Sorry for the more half assed than usual pregame, but it’s lunch time, and I just am not afraid of losing this game. In the past, with our mostly one dimensional teams, we haven’t been able to JUST show up and expect to win, although in a lot of cases our defense made that possible. Now? I really think we can do that against an inferior team. Their terrible offense isn’t going to blow anyone away, and even with Wesley out, there’s no way we won’t put at least our season average on the board. Have all the big wins made me a bit of a complacent fan? Yes, but can you blame me? These next two weeks are just an appetizer for the main course in January. Feast, Frogs, Feast!!

The Pick – TCU 48, Wyoming 0.

Morning Dump

Some critics are missing the point when it comes to TCU Star-Telegram

Freshman Wesley making his mark early for TCU football team Star-Telegram

Hughes named Nagurski Trophy finalist

TCU not wanting to repeat past in Wyoming AP

Should this be the year of the Horned Frog?
Washington Post

Will TCU's take it all the way to BCS title game? Seattle Times

TCU's sophomore linebacker fills big shoes

Blogger debate: TCU vs Cincinnati ESPN

Wyoming QB eager for another challenge

Improved Dalton bolsters TCU's championship hopes Casper Star-Tribune

Pokes change on defense Wyoming News

Franchione emerges as potential early candidate for UNLV job Las Vegas Sun