Sunday, January 31, 2010

Friday, January 29, 2010

Recruiting Class Reunion: 2006

Coming off of the MWC Title season of 2005, Patterson signed some real gems in the Class of 2006 that would lead to the Frogs' next conference title in 2009, despite the lack of a "wow" factor in the class. Unlike any of his previous classes, this one had no 4-star players.

The headliners: Wide receiver Clint Renfro, with his famous last name and state championship rings from Southlake Carroll, picked TCU over a myriad of big-name schools seeking his services. Wayne Daniels was a premiere pass-rusher coming out of Kilgore.

NFL Material: Jerry Hughes and Daryl Washington should both be first-day picks in this spring's NFL Draft, and Marshall Newhouse could also be selected. Offensive linemen Marcus Cannon and Jake Kirkpatrick, quarterback Andy Dalton and wide receiver Jimmy Young are the best bets to be draft picks in 2011.

Hits: Clearly, TCU hit at least two absolute home runs in the Houston area with Dalton, who was a 3-star quarterback from powerhouse Katy, and Hughes, who was a 2-star running back before famously making the switch to defense and earning All-America honors twice. Washington, a product of Irving High, became one of the best of the best TCU linebackers after patiently waiting his turn for a starting spot. Newhouse was an important piece of the offensive line from the day he stepped on campus, and Cannon became his mirror image on the right side after redshirting. Young has been a favorite target of Dalton's all along, nearly eclipsing 1,000 receiving yards as a sophomore. Kirkpatrick, who played just one year of high school football in Tyler, is now one of the better centers in the nation. JUCO transfer cornerback Torrey Stewart was a key contributor in his two years in campus, and will be remembered for his pick-six against the Longhorns in '07. Daniels, along with tight end Evan Frosch, corner-turned-safety Alex Ibiloye, safety Colin Jones, offensive lineman Josh Vernon and defensive tackle Cory Grant have all developed into starters.

Jury is still out: Two defensive linemen: Henry Niutei out of Euless Trinity and Clarence Leatch out of Tatum, have yet to really make a big contribution heading into their senior year.

Misses: Three members of the Class of '06 left the program before they ever played a snap, with Renfro being the most notable. He had nagging injuries that kept him off the football field, but he has had a decent career running track at TCU. JUCO transfer offensive lineman Ryan Sefton never made it to campus, and Rockwall quarterback Zak Eskridge transferred to Midwestern State once he realized he'd be backing up Dalton his entire career.

Bonus: As they did the year before with Ryan Christian, the Frogs again hit a home run in the walk-on department at wide receiver with Bart Johnson and Curtis Clay joining the program sans scholarship. Both have become reliable targets for Dalton (and, in the case of Bart Johnson in the '09 BYU game, Jeremy Kerley).

Afternoon Dump?

Spitpurple, Where are you? Here are a couple articles from ESPN today. Also an update on how D-Wash did yesterday. Seems like he stepped up again and Scouts Inc. says he had a good day, despite his bad performance on Wed. Sorry for the bad format.

From Bruce Feldman on

TCU's plan, the Dawkins deal and Whipple

From Melissa in Ft. Worth: I loved reading the story about how Matt Brown became a Horned Frog. I get why Brown felt like he had to commit to a school last year, but do you think it looks bad for TCU that they weren't more aggressive in recruiting and going after people earlier when it seems like everyone else is these days?

This is a complex topic. Schools are jumping in the boat on recruits earlier and earlier. In Brown's case, he felt he had to react to the domino effect. TCU is different from a lot of programs in its approach to recruiting. I spoke to coach Gary Patterson about this last spring for a while. TCU likes to wait and observe how a prospect develops and see what a kid does as a senior if possible. He said they're not going to panic and rush into things, saying that it's often the ones who you rushed to get who get you beat, and that you don't lose games on the guys you didn't move fast enough on to land. I thought that was a fascinating perspective, and obviously it has paid big dividends if you see how so many under-the-radar recruits have grown into stars for the Horned Frogs and won a lot of games at TCU.

So no, I don't think it looks bad at all for TCU. They're being true to their beliefs and while they may lose on some kids, it seems to prevent them from making as many mistakes as other schools.

From Graham Watson on

Horned Frogs making a late recruiting push

It’s usually around this time of year where the automatic qualifying schools start picking off the upper echelon of recruits from the nonautomatic qualifying schools. The AQs scour non-AQ recruiting commitments for the best players that fit their system and then lure them away with promises of better competition, facilities and of course, name recognition. But TCU is taking a more proactive approach. Instead of losing recruits to the big boys, they’re taking them. This week, two players who were committed to AQ programs switched their commitments to be Horned Frogs. Chris Hawkins, who is ranked the No. 49 receiver in the country by ESPN’s Scouts, Inc., decommitted from Minnesota, and Matt Brown, who is the No. 44 quarterback ranked by Scouts, Inc., decommitted from Arizona. Overall, the Horned Frogs have seven players on their current commitment list who have switched from other schools. Two of the remaining five were committed to AQ schools and two others were committed to Mountain West rival Utah. The other player was committed to Louisiana Tech. Of the seven players who switched commitments to TCU, five are three-star recruits according to Scouts, Inc. The Horned Frogs also have commitments from two four-star recruits: defensive tackle David Johnson and athlete Sam Carter. There’s no doubt that TCU has been able to sell its success not only from this season, but also the other six double-digit win seasons this decade. It also helps that the Horned Frogs are consistently sending players to the NFL and playing some of the best competition in the country both in their nonconference schedule and during conference play. TCU is trying to make a late run at BYU, which currently has the best class in the Mountain West and the No. 24 class in the country, according to Scouts, Inc.

Now Scout's Inc.'s take on Day 4 at the Senior Bowl:

TCU LB Daryl Washington -- He is an undersized linebacker prospect who will have to play on the weak side and be protected by defensive linemen so he has room to run. Washington impressed on Day 4 with his loose hips and ability to open up and get into his zone drops. He also appears to have the best change-of-direction skills of all the North linebackers, planting his foot and transitioning his weight easily. His awareness in zone and ability to get into underneath passing lanes also showed up, and he flashed natural hands when making a tough interception away from his frame.

Lessons in SMU Hate - Clifton Murphy.

Clifton Murphy will be getting his PhD. at TCU starting in 2011.
And by PhD. I obviously mean Pony Hatin' Doctorate.

When I initially did the “Lessons in SMU Hate” feature the other day, it was really just because I hadn’t posted anything in a while and ridiculing SMU happens to be a passion of mine, so it seemed like a no brainer. In fact, ridiculing things about Dallas culture in general is a natural activity of mine – and yes, I realize the inherent irony here considering Dallas is also the place where I live, but hey, my job is here and I’ve got mouths to feed – so establishing this as an off-season recurring post really goes hand in hand with my personality. I just didn’t expect Lesson #2 to arrive so soon.

Enter Clifton Murphy.

For those of you who don’t follow recruiting religiously – and, if you don’t, what is it that you do with your workday, exactly? – Clifton Murphy is a 6-5, 230 pound defensive end recruit from Little Elm (where?) and is the newest commit for the 2010 recruiting class.

Except not exactly.

For you see, TCU Is young Clifton’s dream school and sometimes you have to make sacrifices to achieve your dreams. Until yesterday, Clifton was an SMU commit, and had also been mulling over offers from New Mexico State and conference rival Colorado State. But he just couldn’t get the Frog fever out of his head. Unfortunately for Clifton, the current recruiting class isn’t looking for any defensive end prospects. So – and this is where it gets totally gut punching for the Ponies – Murphy, desperately wanting to be a Horned Frog, made a compromise: He would still come to TCU, but as a greyshirt. What this means is that Murphy, who is graduating from high school this year, will choose to wait and enroll at TCU next January, and thus become a part of the 2011 class, which still has plenty of availability.

Basically what Murphy has done is turned down the chance to be a guaranteed scholarship athlete next fall at SMU and will voluntarily attend Junior College during his first semester so that he can be a Horned Frog. Personally, cash rules everything around me, and having an immediately guaranteed scholarship to another program – read: no junior college – would likely be a big selling point, but, you see, Clifton possesses something we all have deep inside of us, and in droves.

Clifton has SMU hate. He’s basically saying, “Hey SMU, thanks for the interest, but I’m so not interested in your program, I’d rather pay for my schooling next semester, at a junior college no less, so that I DON’T have to come play for you.” He’s basically telling June Jones thanks, but how could I trust my future to a man who wears Hawaiian shirts on the sideline? He’s basically saying he’d rather at least wait until he gets to the pros to develop a raging drug addiction. Conference USA? More like Conference Poo-SA. Most of all, though, he’s personifying the fact that TCU is and will continue to be taken more seriously than SMU and that even with the two million dollar man, the Ponies still have a long way to go before they’re eligible for "big time college football program" status. You can buy a coach and you can buy your players, but you can’t buy a winning tradition.

Clifton may not have the hate that drives Texas Hammer to open palm slap a man in the middle of a crowded restaurant on his birthday simply because he went to SMU, but the fact that he’s passing up a guaranteed scholarship this year just so he can play for the Frogs next year should let us all know who our favorite TCU player will be during the 2011 season.

And that's today's lesson in SMU Hate.

Recruiting Class Reunion: 2005

Instead of hanging their heads after the painful 2004 season, Patterson & staff got back to work signing 21 players in the Class of 2005. For the members of this class (who signed right after an ugly 5-6 campaign) that ended up staying at TCU for five years, the reward was two conference championship rings.

The headliners: Marvin White was a 4-star safety coming out of Kilgore JC, who picked TCU over offers from A&M and Tech, among others. Lorenzo Jones was a highly-regarded defensive tackle from McKinney. Also, TCU pulled a last-minute theft of Tech once again, pulling away Longview DBs Corderra Hunter and James Pierce just before Signing Day.

NFL Material: White was selected by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 4th Round of the 2007 Draft, while Stephen Hodge and Aaron Brown were taken in the 6th Round in '09. Nick Sanders, Rafael Priest and Joseph Turner probably have the best chances at going pro of the 5th year seniors from this group.

Hits: Clearly, Gator was a hit. Hodge, who came out of Tatum, TX as a QB was every bit as good a safety at TCU. Brown and Turner were incredibly productive runners when healthy (and/or not suspended, in Brown's case). How many classes-at any school- produce two four-year starting cornerbacks? That's what TCU got in '05 with Nick Sanders and Rafael Priest, both 2 star recruits coming out of Kilgore and Dallas Madison, respectively. James Vess was mainstay on the defensive line, although he did miss the entire '07 season to suspension. Bryan Courtney was a solid punter and Marcus Jackson was a reliable and selfless back-up QB, twice earning MWC Player of the Week honors while filling in for injured starters.

In-between: Hunter never fulfilled his potential, although he was a solid back-up and contributed on special teams. Nick Richmond, all 6'8" of him, was a part-time starter and full-time false-start machine on the offensive line.

Misses: Pierce, along with offensive lineman Brad Guillory, wide receiver Tim Jackson and defensive lineman Chris Jones never made it to campus. Jones had a very promising true freshman year, then left the team just before the infamous incident which led to rape allegations. Defensive backs Mike Salvage and Chase Gibson as well as defensive end Allen Christopher all had some potential but left the team before they could ever really contribute. Chris Smith was a highly-touted running back coming out of Navasota, but never broke through to play during anything but garbage time. Offensive lineman Tyler Marrou never really contributed.

Bonus: Arriving at campus with the Class of '05 was walk-on wide receiver/running back Ryan Christian, who ended up being a solid contributor on offense once the new offensive coordinators realized how best to use his talents.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Spring Game: April 10th

TCU has announced the schedule for spring football practices, which will begin on March 4th and conclude with the Spring Game on Saturday, April 10th. That is the day before Easter, for those of you with mothers who still mandate attendance for said holiday.

EDIT: I'm an idiot...Easter is April 4th.

A Blogger's Lament.

Sorry, Billy Tubbs, for completely destroying the NCAA Tournament caliber program you built
and exiling you to Beamount. Our bad.

I have a confession to make.

I don’t like baseball.

Alright, maybe it’s not that I don’t necessarily DISLIKE baseball, but it’s just that I don’t love baseball. Sure, it’s a fine sport and America’s Past Time and what not, but who among you can honestly say your bowels don’t just drop the day after the last game of the NBA Finals when you know the only live sport you’ll have to occupy your time for the next two months is baseball? Seriously, I’ve even gone so far as to try and get into watching European Soccer to pass the time, but nothing works. Without football, basketball and, sometimes even hockey, ESPN becomes insufferable and the internet is pretty much just a vehicle for email, porn and movie listings. And when you consider that most television networks view the middle of summer as the off-season for new programming, sometimes I find it amazing that we even make it through the summer at all once we’re out of school and the concept of summer vacation becomes as foreign as the makeup of 90% of Major League rosters.

The reason I bring this up now is because I just got back from the TCU Dallas Alumni business lunch where Nolan Ryan - big Frog fan, by the way - was the key speaker and, he was great and everything and it’s always pretty fantastic to be in the same room as one of your boyhood idols, but baseball just doesn’t hold the same appeal for me now as it did then. It was a pretty light hearted affai, veiled shots were taken at the Rangers expense regarding Matt Purke, and I know the big impetus behind this lunch was to get everyone fired up for Horned Frogs baseball, but it’s just not in me yet. Yes, I will cheer on the Frogs this year – heck, I’ll even support the women’s bball team if they make a run, why not? – and, who knows, I might attend a few games and get hooked. Coach Schloss is one of the best in the business and, from what I read about him/derive from the few times I’ve heard him speak, he absolutely has his shit together and has built one of the premier teams in the country with some of the best facilities right under the noses of the perennial CWS teams in his own back yard. That he’s done this at a football crazy school in a football crazy state with modest resources compared to his nearest competition just makes his accomplishments even that more commendable. But as I stared at Coach sitting there today at the luncheon, unassumingly so considering how we should view him in a similar light as we do GP, it just made me realize even more fully the main void of my college experience.

Why the hell can’t TCU have a good basketball team?

So last night I’m sitting at dinner and my phone buzzes. Now, I knew the Frogs game was finishing up about the time this happened, and as my phone automatically pushes final scores to my inbox, I figured this was going to be what said message was. I want to have faith; I want to feel good and optimistic every time I receive a new TCU score. But I’m also a realist and, seeing as how we’ve lost to such loft programs as Northern Colorado and worst in the Big 12 Nebraska, not to mention blew a 20 point lead to a vastly overrated Texas Tech team at home and lost by 10, I wasn’t expecting much. For those of you who followed along, you know the rest – another loss, a sub 500 record for the zillionth time, and practically no shot at competing in the conference for the 100th year in the row. Considering our next two games are against ranked conference leaders New Mexico and BYU, you can expect the rebuilding effort to begin momentarily.

Now, I don’t mean this as a diatribe against Coach Jim Christian. You can’t do much with a roster full of turd sandwiches and a fan base extremely long on apathy. We all love Tuffy Moss and Zvonko Buljan, but, let’s face it – these guys would warm the bench at some D-II programs. Fortunately, I truly believe that Christian is a good coach and he still has plenty of time to find the right players and develop the ones he has. If Neil got as many years as he did, Christian should go ahead and be given a lifetime contract based on past performance. But, the fact remains we’re still a doormat basketball program situated in one of the most talent rich areas of the country which is ENTIRELY unacceptable.

But, let’s suspend reality for a bit and imagine that the opposite is true. Imagine game days where the majority of the student body camps out for tickets; not because it’s a cool statement making move, but because it’s necessary to get tickets? Imagine Daniel Meyer having the same home advantage that Amon G did for the last two games this year? Imagine having nearly 20 balls out, rage filled game days a year as opposed to just six? Imagine supporting a team that doesn’t, you know, lose to directional schools in mountainous states?

Love em or hate em, Duke Basketball arguably has the best fans in the entire country when it comes to college basketball. Yes, they’re nerds. Yes, a lot of the players that play for them are unlikeable, whiny baby floppers. Y es, Dick Vitale makes hating Duke feel as easy as ordering six beers during last call at The Cellar. But, like I said, you can’t deny that they’re passionate as hell about their team. And think about it – what does Duke have going for it that TCU doesn’t? Ok, they play in the ACC and they have established a solid tradition; I fully understand that’s a HUGE advantage and something that we will probably never have, but they still had to start from somewhere. They weren't always good. They also have a perennial loser of a football team and their lacrosse team likes to get a little bit too rapey once they taste success, so it’s not like they have a whole lot of other sports to occupy their minds, either. But, think about it – Duke is a nerd school which attracts mostly wealthy, east coast boarding school white kids who have probably never played a sport in their life. Duke is, as mentioned, a team filled with mostly white “athletes" – see Kyle Singler - who are among the most alienating in the country, even to their own fans. Not to mention the academic requirements said athletes must meet in order to even be accepted, although I’m willing to bet Elton Brand wasn’t exactly as MENSA quality as most of the student body. How does that translate to basketball success exactly?

TCU is somewhat similar to Duke, but would seemingly have the edge in a lot of the comparable categories. TCU also has a small, mostly white student body who mostly come from families of privilege, but you can’t by any means compare the academic lifetstyle between the two. TCU attracts far more average students who likely played sports at some point in their lives and, although grades are important, they definitely aren’t the only thing, so your fan interest in there.

Duke may have a much larger recruiting base to pluck athletes from – the entire nation – but, when you can only have so few scholarship players, this can also be a bit of a disadvantage. I couldn’t tell you the amount of Division I players who hail from the Metroplex, but I do know that once the major schools swing through and grab who they like, there’s still an absolute lion’s share of guys waiting for offers, and you can bet that SMU or North Texas aren't their top choices. Heck, Dunbar and North Crowley are continually two of the best programs in the state and they’re both located within Tarrant County. I know the draw of a big program talks to a lot of kids, but I think we vastly underestimate how much being able to stay at home and play in front of friends and family just like they have for the previous 18 years can hit a note with certain kids. Not to mention, unlike Duke, the academic requirements at TCU aren’t nearly as lofty and arrangements can absolutely be made. Note: I don’t support academic dishonesty… unless it helps the Frogs get ahead, of course!

I know those are some very superficial observations about the situation, and obviously I don’t think TCU will ever be as nationally popular and respected as a Duke, but the message should be clear – TCU has as much of a chance as just about any team in the region to be successful. We have a great coach. We have a home arena that could be among the loudest in Division I if filled. We have financially gifted boosters who could easily pump money into the program. And we W could take the city bus to recruit half of our team and not see any drop off in talent. We also have low expectations - an NIT bid every other year would satisfy me at this point and if we can't at least attain that given our advantages, perhaps we shouldn't even have Men's Basketball?

Of course, the big elephant in the room is this: How many schools have championship caliber football AND basketball teams? Even the big state schools aren’t commonly gifted with both. Of the largest schools enrollment wise in the country, Texas is hands down the biggest exception to the rule as they have outstanding football, baseball and basketball teams. They also have the largest athletic budget in the country in a landslide. Ohio State has a great football tradition, but their basketball team has some room to improve, although they are markedly better now with the momentum they gained with Greg Oden and Mike Conley. Florida, although in the midst of a few down years in basketball, is up there as well. But, schools like Arizona State, Penn State, Michigan, Michigan State, Aggy, Minnesota – practically every Big 10 school as they're the largest in the country – are pretty much limited to one of the other and, in some cases, neither. The Big East is easily my favorite conference to watch for basketball, but going down that list, they have approximately zero teams that enjoy success both on the field and on the court outside of West Virginia, and our football success is always going to be better than theirs as long as Bill Stewart is the coach. It also helps when your highly successful alcoholic basketball coach was practically handed to you on a platter because he is an alumnus.

So, I guess the other bottom line to this post is that at least part of the reason we lack basketball success is because it's extremely difficult to be blessed with success in more than one sport, so you pretty much have to take your pick. If having a great football team means having a less than adequate basketball team, that’s a trade off I think most of us will take every single time. But, I just don’t know why we can’t be an exception to the rule. Perhaps one day we will be.

In the meantime, we’ve got an 11th ranked baseball team about to take the diamond, so perhaps I shouldn’t be so cynical about what we don’t have and appreciate what we do have. So, swing batta batta and hit the ball with the stick over the fence! And, if not, at least beat Texas again this year. I just hate those bastards.

Recruiting Class Reunion: 2004

Whereas the Class of 2003 contained a lot of extreme hits or misses, the Class of 2004 came back to the middle a little bit, although there were certainly some highlights of this class.

The headliners: Quincy Butler was a 4-star defensive back coming out of Tyler JC, and was originally committed to Missouri. Otis McDaniel was a highly-touted wide receiver from San Antonio Taft, and committed live on NBC at the US Army All-American Bowl. Shae Reagan, who played QB in tiny Idalou, TX, spurned his original commitment to Tech the day before signing day to become a Frog.

NFL Material: Three members of the Class of '04 were taken in the 2009 NFL Draft: linebacker Jason Phillips (5th Round- Baltimore Ravens), linebacker Robert Henson (6th Round- Washington Redskins) and center Blake Schlueter (7th Round- Denver Broncos). Drew Coleman, who came to TCU as a JUCO wide receiver, was taken by the New York Jets in the 6th Round of the 2006 Draft. Butler was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Cowboys in '06, and bounced around between Dallas, New Orleans and the CFL before landing with the St. Louis Rams in 2009.

Hits: Phillips, Henson and Schlueter- all originally 2 star recruits- became All-Conference players. Walter Bryant, Steven Coleman, Giles Montgomery, Matt Panfil and Justin Watts all ended up winning 4 letters. Butler was a stud corner in his two seasons at TCU. Cody Moore, a high school running back, became a mainstay on the defensive line. Reagan, when healthy, was a valuable pass-catching option as a tight end. Preston Phillips emerged as a starter later in his career and Zarnell Fitch, a JUCO transfer D-tackle, had his moments as well.

In-between: Donald Massey, who came to TCU highly regarded out of Hillsboro, was a solid contributor for three years but left the program before his senior season. Brent Hecht and Chris Hayes, both 3-star JUCO transfers, played but never made much of a splash. Injuries kept Heath Raetz, an offensive lineman from Burleson, from ever really fulfilling his potential.

Misses: McDaniel was seen as the continuation of a lucrative talent pipeline from San Antonio's Taft High School to TCU that previously included Marvin Godbolt, Ranorris Ray and Robert Merrill. He never played a snap for the Frogs on the football field, though, and instead ran track at TCU. Running back Detrick James played very little before breaking his arm and then quietly exiting the program. Offensive lineman Robert Clark, the first player to commit to the Class of '04, never added any bulk to his long frame and subsequently never contributed.

Morning Dump

Turnovers cost TCU in 63-57 loss at Colorado State Star-Telegram

TCU baseball team opens practice ranked 11th nationally, talking Omaha

TCU women dismantle Colorado State, run home win streak to 17

TCU, Oregon State agree to play

Recruiting expert TCU's improvement, SMU's quarterback future Dallas Morning News

Jerry Hughes' draft diary: 'I'll play where ever they want me to play' Sporting News

Senior Bowl: TCU's Washington, Ohio Price impress on day 3 CBS Sports

Senior Bowl report day 3 Sports Illustrated

-Daryl Washington/LB/TCU: Washington was one of the better athletes at the linebacker position and showed the ability to make plays sideline-to-sideline. He was fast to the flanks, showed ability in pursuit and good range in pass coverage. Washington has been overshadowed by his teammate Jerry Hughes but really made his mark the past three days.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Huuuuughes #2 in 2011?

Looks like we are stepping up our recruiting to try and land some big name recruits for 2011. Gonna be hard to pick up these guys considering the other offers they have on the table already. Keep your fingers crossed.

TCU offers Hughes

Friday, January 22, 2010 | Print Entry

Posted by Gerry Hamilton

ESPNU 150 Watch List member Nathan Hughes (Spring, Texas/Klein Oak) picked up his 11th offer this week. TCU is the latest program to offer the 6-foot-5, 245-pound strong side end.

The Horned Frogs join LSU, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Baylor, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Nebraska, Houston and Stanford in extending written offers. The Texas Longhorns are expected to offer in February.

The two-time, all-district pick player is planning to attend a Sooners junior day in February. He attended college games at LSU and Texas this season.

Hughes has already committed to playing in the 2011 Under Armour All-America Game.

Metoyer to take in junior days

ESPNU 150 Watch List receiver Trey Metoyer (Whitehouse, Texas/Whitehouse) will begin a trio of unofficial visits for junior days this weekend. The 6-2, 195-pounder will attend the Texas A&M junior day Saturday followed by Texas Feb. 13 and Oklahoma Feb. 20.

Metoyer currently holds scholarship offers from Oklahoma, Texas A&M, Arkansas, Texas Tech, Nebraska, Texas, LSU, Miami, Oklahoma State and TCU, among many others.

The two-sport star has produced back-to-back seasons of 70-plus receptions and 1,100-plus yards. He has scored 29 touchdowns the last two seasons.

Nocona Boots Giveaway

In the early part of December, a representative with Nocona College Boots collection, gave me the opportunity to review their boots, wear them to the Fiesta Bowl and tell everyone what I thought about them. I now officially have more new endorsements than Tiger Woods.

While they did not bring a Frog victory as I had hoped, they did provide me with the style and comfort that one needs for any big game.

Here is a picture of the boots in action on the party bus on the way to Glendale.
Antique Saddle Vintage Full Quill Ostrich

Most people that know me understand that I am very superstitious when it comes to Frog game day attire. Normally I would never wear the boots again since they were part of the devastating Fiesta Bowl, but these boots are so nice, that I have to give them a second chance.

To check out the line of TCU boots, check out the website here.

Furthermore, the Nocona rep is providing Spitblood with a gift certificate for one free pair of TCU Nocona Collegiate Boots. In order to enter the drawing you have to meet two criteria:

1.) You must have donated some amount to our Purple People Seaters Campaign

2.) Send an email to that contains the following:
  • Full name and address (so I know where to send the gift certificate if you win)
  • At least one recommendation for our next generation website (how would you improve the website if you could do anything)
The drawing will be held on Monday, March 1st, so that gives you a full month to enter.

From Omaha?

Baseball America released their Preseason Top 25 today, putting Jim Schlossnagle and the Horned Frogs at #11. It's just 23 days until the season opener, when the Frogs take on Sam Houston State on Friday evening, February the 19th.

Searching for Sleepers in QB Class

Stewart Mandel Article Here

"The most likely 2010 sleeper, said Wallace, is Matt Brown, an undersized (6-0, 175 pounds) three-star passer from Allen, Texas, who recently switched his pledge from Arizona to TCU after Wildcats offensive coordinator Sonny Dykes took the head-coaching job at Louisiana Tech. ranks Brown 59th at the position."

Morning Dump

Patterson already looking to next season Star-Telegram

Gameday: TCU at Colorado State Star-Telegram

Frogs have banner year for postseason honors

Jane Justin fieldhouse construction underway

UT adds certain Mountain West team ESPN

TCU lands WR Hawkins ESPN

TCU offers Edmunds ESPN

D-Wash from the Senior Bowl

New Era Scouting
–The top line­backer on the field was by far Daryl Wash­ing­ton (TCU). His speed is a force, as he appeared to be mov­ing faster than most of the safeties on the field. He diag­noses well and gets going, true sideline-to-sideline line­backer that is in on a lot of action.

CBS Sports
-Daryl Washington played inside in TCU's 4-2-5 defense this year, but his move to the strong side seems likely after watching the past two practices. His ability to knife through traffic to rein in running backs and stay with Oregon tight end Ed Dickson down the field (and knock the ball away on one corner route in particular) was impressive. Though a bit high-cut, his speed and aggression makes up for it in space.

-Daryl Washington, LB, TCU: Oregon running back Legarrette Blount will be seeing No. 41 in his dreams. Washington, the impact linebacker from the powerhouse Horned Frogs' defense, spent enough time in the backfield that he should have traded his blue defense jersey for the offense's white. The coaches put him in position to make plays by blitzing him, and Washington broke through again and again. He edges his North teammate, Missouri's superlative Sean Weatherspoon.

Dallas Morning News

-TCU linebacker Daryl Washington had a good session in pass coverage. He consistently ran stride-for-stride with tight ends and broke up two passes.

Recruiting Class Reunion: 2003

Like their predecessors in 2002, the Recruiting Class of 2003 would go on to shape the TCU football program over the next five years. Unfortunately for this group, that included some highs (the MWC Title in '05) as well as some lows (the 5-loss '07 season).

The headliner: Without a doubt, the recruit that caused the biggest buzz in this class was 4-star quarterback James Battle from Denton's Ryan High School. The 6'2", 195lb Battle had offers from a number of Big 12 and SEC schools, but chose to bring his game down the road to TCU after leading Ryan to a 4A state championship.

NFL Material: Unfortunately, the Class of '03 didn't produce any NFL Draft picks. David Hawthorne, who came to TCU as a 2-star linebacker out of Corsicana, however, caught on as a free agent and has done very well with the Seattle Seahawks. David Roach, who came to TCU from Abilene, just completed his second season with the St. Louis Rams. Brian Bonner and Chase Ortiz both attended NFL training camps, but did not make their respective teams.

MLB Material: Chad Huffman, the quarterback from Missouri City's Elkins High, left TCU before his senior football season (when he may well have been the starter) to pursue a career in professional baseball. After being drafted by the San Diego Padres in the 2nd Round of the 2006 MLB Draft, he has vaulted through their farm system and will be competing for a job on the Major League squad here in a few weeks at Spring Training.

Hits: Ortiz, who was a generally unheralded linebacker coming out of Clear Creek in the Houston area, switched to defensive end right before the '05 season and never looked back, immediately earning a starting spot and All-MWC honors three years in a row. Bonner, who was the less-hyped member of the Beeville Jones duo (Ervin Dickerson was supposedly the real prize, it was thought), was All-Conference twice, contributing both as a hard-hitting safety as well as on punt returns. Hawthorne, Roach and offensive lineman Matty Lindner were all also three-year starters. Other four-year letter winners included wide receiver Marcus Brock, tight end Quentin Cunigan, Dickerson, fullback William Jackson and defensive end Jamison Newby. Offensive lineman Wade Sisk was a solid contributor and linebacker Logo Tevaseu became a fan-favorite with his kamikaze mentality on special teams.

Tommy Blake: I wasn't sure exactly where to put him. On one hand, Blake started at least part of all four of his seasons as a Frog. He was All-MWC in '05 and '06, and during those years he was about as dominant as any player to suit up for Patterson. All that at defensive end after having played running back at Aransas Pass. On the other, his lasting legacy is his unfulfilled potential. After his stellar junior season in '06, he decided to stay for his senior year despite being assured he'd be an early 1st Round Pick. Big things were expected of him in '07, but his disappearance from fall practice cast a shadow on program that they couldn't shake all year. He eventually returned, but was just never the same player he had been before.

Misses: Perhaps one reason for the down season in 2007 was that a full third of this class could be classified as misses. Battle famously flopped at TCU, gaining an alarming amount of weight before transferring the Stephen F. Austin before quitting football altogether. Raytron Mayfield never made it to campus. Will Oliver, Freddie Stoglin and Larry Bradford all left the program without ever making much of a contribution. Fullback Marcus Draper was solid as a true freshman in '02, but then left TCU (but not before meating out at the SAE Party House). Trey Englert, to my knowledge, never saw the field much.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Damn You, Pam Tebow!

I'm sure everyone knows by now, but Tim Tebow and his disobedient mother Pam will be airing a 30 second Super Bowl ad for the ultra-conservative Christian group Focus on the Family. For those of you living under a rock who don't know about this, it's basically a story retelling how his mom was told to abort him after getting sick during her pregnancy, and she obviously didn't listen.
Now I don't want to start the abortion debate on spitblood, because this isn't the forum (neither is the Super Bowl, Tim). The purpose of this post is for all of us to think about how much different (read better) our lives as college football fans that aren't balls deep in Florida/Tebow/Meyer would be had Pam just taken the advice of doctors, like most of us normal human beings do. Maybe I hate Florida and the Media-Tebow love fest more than others, but as a football fan and generally a fan of people that aren't complete douchebags (Jersey Shore cast being the exceptions), I just feel like college football without Tim Tebow over these past few years would have been even better. We wouldn't have seen 1 more Florida championship (he didn't win their first one, but espn will make you think he did), we would've been spared so many high pitched lispy voiced interviews about how he tries harder than everyone ever, and we would've never seen Filipino boys cirumcized on ESPN, ever. I mean seriously, has there been a bigger Media Whore in the history of college athletics???
And to think this all could've been avoided...Thanks again, Pam.

Lessons in SMU Hate - Rape.

Apparently part of SMUs Student Welcome Package.

As I have been prone to do when they were down, now I will continue to kick SMU while they’re kind of up. Fresh on the heels of finding ANOTHER dead student on campus via drug related incident*, now SMU gets to deal with rape charges against one of its football players. Before getting into said rape charge, an interesting note about the dead student – so apparently the Kappa Alpha Fraternity at SMU was recently removed from campus for PARTYING TOO HARD, BRO!!! so now, in order to gain revenue from what would have otherwise been just an empty building, SMU moved in a bunch of non-affiliated students while they tried to find them housing elsewhere. Looks like there was enough magic left in the old place from all of the previously overdosed pledges to take down just a regular joe. Seriously, can you imagine a regular night in the dorms at SMU? “Brah, come on brah, take a bump of this. It’ll make you feel like you’re 100 feet tall… no brah, I swear the dealer who sold it to me isn’t going to come back and discard you in a dumpster somewhere… …. That’s some good shit, huh brah?... uh… brah??? DAD!! Get the lawyer on speed dial!” Seriously, people pay even more money than TCU’s currently nauseatingly high admissions prices to go there.

Getting back on topic as far as the rape charge, SMU defensive lineman Torian Pittman is currently facing charges of raping a 22-year old because he apparently wasn’t aware that by being a football player he is inherently attractive to the majority of the women he will come in contact with and doesn’t need to resort to such barbaric methods for locking down some poon. Those white girls may dress fancy and act like bitches, but they like to get freaky too, I promise. On one hand, it’s a bummer for their program to lose a player over an incident like this, and it’s obviously an awful situation for the girl involved. It may be a controversial opinion on my part, but I’m against all forms of rape that aren’t scoreboard related. However, as we all know, unless you’re Notre Dame – and that’s extremely debatable at this point due to recent performance – you can’t build a football team without catching a few thugs along the way, so by that measure, SMU, you have officially re-arrived – and this time you might actually be doing it legitimately.

The thing that struck me watching SMU this season, and most notably the big bowl win, was how, down the stretch, they became harder and harder to absolutely hate. They got rid of Bo Levi and his Eminem persona. June Jones has not only kept his mouth shut since the infamous, “No one has been playing great football in the metroplex lately” comments, he’s backed up his reputation as a program rejuvenator by taking the Ponies, who have dwelled in the cellars of such lofty locales as the WAC and CUSA in recent years, and turned them into a respectable program. Seriously, this guy HAD to have sold his soul to the devil, right? There’s really no way he’s not getting plowed by beezlebub every Saturday night in exchange for the skills he’s been given, whatever they are, right? Still, no matter his methods, whatever he does works, and I think by the time he leaves the Hilltop – and, ironically, if you’ve been to SMU, it’s anything but hilly – he’ll have earned the $2 million annually.

But, just like many of you, I’ll never be able get past the awful student body the school continues to churn out year after year. It’s one thing to have a slump – obviously certain age groups of students we are acquainted with seem to be of far poorer quality than others – but it never ceases to amaze me how terrible the quality of person that attends SMU is on average. And the way they keep killing themselves for a few hours of fun isn’t going to change my opinion anytime soon.

So where am I really trying to go with all of this, other than to build off-season SMU hate for the sake of it? When I look at SMU as a football team, I see TCU in the early years of the Fran/Patterson era. The fanbase had become so apathetic towards anything football related, that even when success was clearly right under their noses, it took them much longer than necessary to seize on it. Think about it – it took until this past season against Utah for TCU to sell out a home game on their own merit. It took until this season to set an attendance record despite having one of the top ten winningest programs of the decade playing on campus every single season. What if this happens for SMU? What if their fanbase, who is already terrible, smells success and actually starts to give a damn? What if those penny loafer and seer sucker wearing bastards gain a sense of entitlement and try and claim the metroplex football monopoly? You think this rape isn’t some big ploy? You think they didn’t realize that all publicity is good publicity and that by immersing a rapist into the whitest, snottiest, richest, most condescendingly terrible area of north Texas they could create some interest and notoriety for their program? I know your game, June Jones, and I’m keeping my eye on you. Those “June Cometh” signs have a bit of a different ring to them now, don’t they?

And that’s today’s Lesson in SMU Hate.

*-I have no idea if this was the cause, but I don't exactly have half of my post without it, now do I?

Matt Brown Interview

Here is an interview between ESPN's Bruce Feldman and new commit Matt Brown. How many players have we stolen from other BCS schools now?

"Coaching is just a business"

Tuesday, January 26, 2010 | Feedback | Print Entry

Last spring I wrote an ESPN Magazine story (read it here) where we set out to detail not only the boom of Texas-bred college QB standouts -- but also focus on the how tricky the recruiting process can be to navigate for high school QB recruits. In the initial story pitch, we had discussed the story as "Searching for the Next Drew Brees" or "the Next Tood Reesing." I spoke to some college coaches as well as some recruiting analysts before heading down to Ft. Worth for an Elite 11 regional workout at TCU.

The QB who fit our profile best -- and who also outperformed every other quarterback prospect there was a 6-foot flat, 175-pound kid named Matt Brown. The Nebraska Cornhuskers and a handful of other BCS programs had already offered him scholarships; he and his family were trying to sort out his options. Right before the story went to print, Brown committed to the Arizona Wildcats and Mike Stoops. This Seemed like a great fit. Brown went on to have a great senior season, throwing for over 2,400 yards and rushing for almost 1200 more. His TD-INT ratio was 24-2.

I have to say I was pretty stunned when I saw something pop up on my Twitter feed via ESPN_OntheTrail saying Matt Brown had de-commited and was now committed to the TCU Horned Frogs. I spoke to Brown last night. His story illustrates just how nerve-wracking the recruiting process can be for recruits and their families, especially when you think everything is all taken care of and your college future is set.

Feldman: You just switched to TCU? How did all of this happen -- when (former Arizona offensive coordinator) Sonny (Dykes) took the La. Tech head coaching job?

Brown: Yeah, it was crazy. Coach Dykes and Coach (Mike) Stoops came by for their home visit on last Tuesday, and they didn't say anything about anything. I had no idea something might be happening. It seemed like a normal day, and they were just stopping by. But then Coach Dykes takes the job the next day. So I'm sitting there, thinking 'What the heck?' I didn't know what to think about it. I didn't know what was going to happen. I mean this was the guy who was recruiting me since I was a sophomore. He was always there. He gave me my second offer. And when he left, I didn't know what to do. I didn't want to put all of my eggs in one basket with Coach Dykes and Arizona.

I went right back to our athletic facility (at Allen High in Allen, Texas) and (my high school coach) said he would call a couple of schools. And he did. One of the schools was TCU and they were still looking for a quarterback and they wanted me.

How did you find out Dykes was leaving Arizona?

I found out from watching the TV. I was heading back home from school and this guy texted me. I get some texts from people in Arizona, and so I see this text, 'Hey, you heard about Coach Dykes?' I didn't even reply back because I didn't know who it was. Then, I turn on ESPN and it's "Breaking News: Coach Dykes is taking the La. Tech job." I'm like, 'What the heck?!? You were just in my living room yesterday.' It was crazy.

Were you able to get Coach Dykes back on the phone?

He called me two days later and said he was sorry for how everything happened. Then Coach Stoops called me another two days after that. The thing was -- and I told them this -- if they would've at least talked to me and said 'Hey, Coach Dykes is leaving and this is what we're going to do. We're going to be fine. Don't worry about anything. You need to stay here." But they didn't say any of that. I think they were just expecting me to stay.

I already talked to Coach Stoops about it, and I think he knows he messed up a little bit. I mean, I didn't know what to do. I wasn't going to sit there and wait. There's just two weeks left (till Signing Day).

So then all of your high school coaches to start making calls. What was that process like?

All of the coaches were calling. There were about three or four of them get on the phones. We called the Utah Utes and they said they were really interested. They wanted to fly me out the next day for an official visit.

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish were interested, but they didn't think they had enough room on their roster. We just kept calling schools. East Carolina just called up to say they were offering me, and TCU is saying how interested they were in me. TCU just felt like a better fit.

How much panic did you have from the time you find out Dykes is leaving to the time you start hearing that you might have other options at other schools?

There were about 30 minutes from the time I saw Coach Dykes left. I immediately ran over to the facility and I was just freaking out. I didn't know what to think. My coaches were saying, 'Just relax. Let us call a couple of coaches.' So they started calling schools and would hear, 'Heck, yeah, we got room.' It was a really exciting time. I'm just really blessed that TCU still had room.

Had TCU been recruiting a lot before last week?

They didn't recruit me while I was committed to Arizona, but they had recruited me before that. They had been really interested, but because I had committed so early to Arizona, I guess they really hadn't had much of a chance to put their two cents in. It was just one of those situations where I had gotten a second chance to rethink everything.

Did Sonny try to recruit you to Louisiana Tech?

No, he didn't. I think he knew I wasn't going to do that. He just tried to make sure that I would still go to Arizona. They're all nice people. Everybody knows that. I wish them nothing but the best.

When you were watching TCU this year, I guess you never dreamed you were about to be part of that program, huh?

Yeah, if you had told me I would've committed to TCU, I would've laughed at you. I was always impressed with them. The campus is real nice and I like the offense they ran.

I took an unofficial to TCU this weekend and that's where they offered me. TCU is a school that wants to meet your parents, wants to meet you. The quarterback coach wants to meet you. They're not a school that just throws out offers.

Did you consider just staying with Arizona?

Yeah, and that was a thing. But I just didn't hear from any of their coaches. So I didn't know what to do. I didn't hear from any of them. That was the only problem. If they would've called and said 'Hey, we got this all worked out. Coach Dykes is leaving but we're thinking about bringing in this guy, and hopefully everything's fine and we hope you stay with this commitment.' Yeah, O.K., then I would've never called Utah or TCU or any other school. There's definitely a time where I'd still have gone to Arizona, but I just never heard.from any of them and I didn't know what to think about it.

Did you try calling them or think that maybe they're only allowed to call you once a week and couldn't contact you directly?

I tried calling Coach Dykes a couple of times and his inbox was full because he had just got that job. But I didn't even have anybody else's number there on the coach staff. I didn't get calls from anybody else there. I was expecting Coach Stoops to call me. I didn't have his number in my new phone.

This sounds like it's every recruit's worst nightmare. You had Nebraska and all of these other offers nine months ago but then you commit someplace and now you're not sure who is going to be coaching you or in what system and then you have to worry if it's too late to look at anyplace else?

Yeah, I had some good offers -- some good ones early on -- and if I had just waited a little longer, I might've had five or 10 more. But I don't regret committing to Arizona when I did because I really did like Arizona. It was a place I really wanted to go, and right now it's not a place I wouldn't want to go. It's just that TCU offers everything that Arizona did but it offers something that Arizona can't, which is being closer to home. It's cool that it's people only from Texas. I'm truly a believer in team chemistry.

TCU treated me really well there. The thing I like about them is they just go to work. I like that. The thing about TCU -- and this is irony -- but Coach Patterson has had job offers to go to other places. But he's staying at TCU and he wants to stay at TCU. It was a family feel there.

They knew that I have been running the exact same offense that they do, and they know that I know how to run an offense. It was just kind of a weird and crazy fit.

I truly believe that everything does happen for a reason.

I know the academic programs you were looking for were a big factor in your choice last time. Does TCU offer you offer something similar to Arizona?

Yeah, they do have the weather stuff. They don't have meteorology as a major, but they have all the requirements for minors and the classes I would have to take to become an atmospheric researcher. They said they would work with me on that, and the National Weather Service is actually located in Ft. Worth, so I could get my internship during one of the springs, and then after college I can kinda get started and start working.

Are you done with the recruiting process now?

Pretty much. TCU just felt too right and perfect. There are a bunch of other programs that could be a good fit, but I don't think any of them would be as good a fit as TCU is for me.

It's pretty crazy. Taking it back, I wish I would've thought about it a little longer and made sure Arizona was the right decision for me. I had put all my eggs in one basket with Coach Dykes and Arizona. I kinda committed because of him. I should've thought that even if he stayed this year, he might not have been there very long. I definitely learned a lesson. Coaching is just a business. For every assistant coach in college football, their main goal is to get a head coaching job. I wish it didn't happen this way. I wish they would've known sooner, so they could get another quarterback. I wish them the best and I told them that.

Sporting News Early Top 25 for 2010

The Sporting News has come out with a very early Preseason Top 25 for the 2010 college football season, and you'll be glad to know they've put TCU at #8, the only Lone Star State team to make the list.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Recruiting Class Reunion: 2002

The TCU recruiting class of 2002 was the first full class of the Patterson era (2001 was a mix of Franchione & Patterson recruits), and produced quite a few players that played a big part in making TCU football what it was in the '00s.

The headliners: 6'3", 270lb, 4-star defensive tackle Earl Anderson out of San Marcos had offers from just about everyone, including the school he was originally committed to- Texas. Robert Merrill was a 4-star running back coming out of Taft High School in San Antonio, and picked the Frogs over Oklahoma State, Nebraska, A&M and Colorado.

NFL Material: Cory Rodgers, a high school QB recruited as an athlete and offensive lineman Herbert Taylor, his high school teammate (bet you didn't remember that, did you?), both became NFL draft picks. Rodgers, who left a year early, was picked in the 4th round by Green Bay in 2006, and Taylor was selected by Denver in the 6th round of the 2007 Draft. Jared Retfosky, who was recruited as an athlete out of Justin Northwest before playing defensive tackle and deep snapper for the Frogs, won a Super Bowl ring with the Steelers last year as a snapper.

Hits: Jeff Ballard, originally a 2-star recruit coming out of Friendswood, memorably came off the bench to lead a comeback win at BYU in '05 and became the most accurate passer in school history. Taylor and Rodgers both earned 1st Team All-Conference honors. Lonta Hobbs became a four-year starter and is 2nd All-Time behind LT on the school rushing touchdown chart, and his backfield mate Merrill was very productive when healthy. Six other players were four-year letter winners: Chad Andrus, Maurice Bouldwin, Eric Buchanan, Michael DePriest, Elvis Gallegos and Quentily Harmon.

Misses: Earl Anderson never made it to campus, and was one of two members of the Class of '02 that never played a snap for the Frogs. Hard to call this guy a miss...but Matt Hines, a linebacker out of Irving, had his scholarship honored by TCU even after he fractured a vertebrae in his neck during his senior season. Fullback Reggie La'Mothe and defensive tackle Terence James both left the program following the troubled 2004 season after negligible contributions.

Come back to Spitblood in the days leading up to National Signing Day, as we'll continue to look back on TCU Recruiting Classes of yesteryear.

Ranking the "Paper Tigers"

Every year on National Signing Day (which, by the way, is February 3rd this year), Coach Patterson likes to downplay any sort of hyperbole about the newest Horned Frogs by referring to them as "Paper Tigers". Over the next few days, I'll be going class by class to see how those tigers developed as football players at TCU. But right now, here are how the recruiting classes (since 2002) have ranked on least according to Rivals:

1. Class of 2009: 21 players.
-4 star players: 4
-3 star players: 12
-2 star players: 4
-Total stars: 60
-Stars per player: 3.00*

2. Class of 2006: 18 players.
-4 star players: 0
-3 star players: 10
-2 star players: 8
-Total stars: 46
-Stars per player: 2.55

3. Class of 2007: 24 players.
-4 star players: 1
-3 star players: 11
-2 star players: 12
-Total stars: 61
-Stars per player: 2.54

4. Class of 2008: 18 players.
-4 star players: 0
-3 star players: 8
-2 star players: 10
-Total stars: 44
-Stars per player: 2.44

5. Class of 2002: 17 players.
-4 star players: 2
-3 star players: 3
-2 star players: 12
-Total Stars: 41
-Stars per player: 2.41

T6. Class of 2003: 21 players.
-4 star players: 1
-3 star players: 6
-2 star players: 14
-Total stars: 50
-Stars per player: 2.38

T6. Class of 2004: 21 players.
-4 star players: 1
-3 star players: 6
-2 star players: 14
-Total stars: 50
-Stars per player: 2.38

T6. Class of 2005: 21 players.
-4 star players: 1
-3 star players: 6
-2 star players: 14
-Total stars: 50
-Stars per player: 2.38

*- one player was unranked by Rivals.

I didn't include this year's class because, well, they haven't signed with TCU yet. But, after today's flurry of recruiting activity which included the commitments of Allen QB Matt Brown (who switched from Arizona), Channelview WR Chris Hawkins (who switched from Minnesota) and Texarkana Pleasant Grove ATH Antonio Graves, the Class of 2010 looks like it may be the highest-rated of in the Patterson era. As of right now, there are 18 players committed, with a stars-per-player average of 3.17!

Frogs back at .500

I ventured down to DMC for the B-ball game Saturday afternoon. Unfortunately, the Frogs came up just short and fell victim to UNLV to put their season record at 10-10. I'll say this...our team never quits. They play hard on every possession on both ends of the court. That's what helped them come back from a 9-point deficit twice...the second time they were able to close the Rebels' lead to two with under a minute to play. However...this team appears to have two fatal flaws: no size and no offensive playmakers. Sure, they have a few guys that can knock down some shots, but no one capable of really putting the team on their backs and producing buckets when no one else can. A few other observations from the game:

-Pretty poor showing from the student section. I realize TCU isn't Duke, but you don't have to be good to get at least a few hundred students to make up a decently rowdy student section. You're not going to be in college forever (I thought I would be, too...), so get rowdy for whatever team you have.

-While the Frogs have no size, they do have two players doing a good job of pretending to be big: 6'5" sophomore Kevin Butler and 6'9" freshman Nikola Cerina both have hearts that belong in bigger bodies. They did a good job going up against UNLV's much bigger posts.

-Jerry Hughes got a real good ovation when he received the Lott Trophy at halftime. I'm definitely going to miss the "Huuuuuuuughes" cheer at home games next fall.

-Things don't get much easier for the Frogs this week, with a road game at Colorado State on Wednesday and then a home game against New Mexico Saturday.

Looking around the conference, the newest bracketology from ESPN has BYU as a 3-seed, New Mexico as a 7 and UNLV as a 10.

Vote for the Best College Uniform

Round One - TCU v. Cal (we are up 73% to 27%)

Vote Here

Saturday, January 23, 2010

East West

I'm out so I apologize for the brevity and lack of animation.

Marshall Newhouse picked up the start at LT in today's shriner's east west game currently airing on ESPN2. Check it out if you have a chance.

For the record I have a bar in DC committed to playing the Frog b-ball game this evening. Tequila shot If we win, j├Ąger if we lose...

Friday, January 22, 2010

The Future...

Now that we're finally done with the decade that no one ever knew what to call, it's time to look ahead at what is in store for college football in the twenty-teens. A couple of ESPN analysts took their best shot at it. Here are a few nuggets of the relevant predictions:

Mark Schlabach says:

The Big Ten is exploring the possibility of adding a 12th team, and I'm betting it will be Missouri before the 2011 season. With 12 teams, the Big Ten can split into two divisions and stage a conference championship game. Who can't wait to flock to Detroit or Minneapolis in early December? With Missouri leaving, the Big 12 will add TCU to its lineup of schools. Not to be left out, the Pac-10 will add Boise State and Utah, giving it 12 teams and a moneymaking championship game. The Big East will react by adding Memphis, East Carolina, Central Florida and Temple.

Tim Griffin says

We’ll see some realignment in the league as Missouri leaves for the Big Ten and TCU is added to fill the Tigers' place. That move will give Big 12 leaders an excuse for realignment that eventually will be selected from a blind draw of plans at Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe’s desk. The Osborne Division will have Nebraska, Colorado, Baylor, Texas Tech, Oklahoma State and Texas A&M. The Royal Division will give a home to TCU, Texas, Oklahoma, Iowa State, Kansas and Kansas State. After four years of play, that grouping will prove so unpopular that the old divisional format will be adapted with TCU joining the South Division and Oklahoma State moving to the North.

Graham Watson says:

Mountain West will get an automatic bid. This isn’t some huge revelation here. The play of the Mountain West the past couple seasons has it on the path to an automatic bid and if the rest of the conference can catch up -- which it should with good coaches such as Brady Hoke and Dave Christensen -- the MWC should be a shoo-in for an automatic berth.

What are your predictions?

Friday Roundtable

The other night, I turned on the TV to find a nice little mid-week of the HBO's was playing "Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze". It brought back a lot of memories, and it got me thinking about how I've gone about prioritizing different aspects of my life at different times in my life. So I'll pose the same question to you that I asked myself that night:

What were you more obsessed with: Ninja Turtles at age 7, or TCU football at age 23?

Follow-up question: Why were Beebop and Rocksteady replaced with Tokka and Rahzar in the TMNT movies?

Frogzilla getting his Lott Trophy tomorrow

At halftime of tomorrow's basketball game against UNLV (tip is at 5pm), Jerry Hughes will be presented with the Lott Trophy, which is presented annually to the defensive player that best represents the acronym I.M.P.A.C.T. (integrity, maturity, performance, academics, community, and tenacity...thank you, wikipedia). This will likely be your last chance to scream "Huuuuuuuuuuuuuughes" before he is drafted by the Cowboys (wink, wink, other Jerry- I know you read our blog).

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Season at a Crossroads

It's pretty much do or die time for the basketball team. At 10-9 after last night's expected win over hapless UT-Pan American, now is the time for them to show they can compete for a post-season appearance. Now, don't go thinking that I'm getting too far ahead of myself and am insinuating that this is a Tournament team...but I certainly believe they could compete for a berth in the NIT (or even the lesser-known CBI) if they close out the season on a positive note.

UNLV comes to Fort Worth Saturday night with a 15-4 record- including wins over Louisville and Arizona- and an RPI ranking of 41, which is far higher than any team TCU has defeated this year (the Frogs rank 161st themselves). But in last weekend's 67-62 loss at San Diego State, the Frogs outperformed the Aztecs (who have an RPI of 37) in nearly every facet of the game- they out-shot, out-rebounded and out-assistesededed SDSU. It seems like a game they ought to have won, but that is just an illustration of how hard it is to win on the road in this conference. Perhaps they earn some redemption playing a comparatively-ranked team at home this weekend?

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe this year's Frog hoops squad is just another in the alarmingly-long line of disappointing teams. I'm not convinced of that, but even if they are, almost all of those past teams have had at least one big conference upset in them. With all of the fan support that was generated during football season, can't we get a decent-sized, vocal crowd in Daniel-Meyer for the basketball team at least once? Who knows, maybe this is the game that turns the tide for this program.

Top 10 Programs of Decade

Hopefully coaches will take this article with them on recruiting trips. Who would have ever thought in the mid 90's that we would become one of the best teams in the nation for years to come? Congrats Patterson on bringing such a storied program back to stardom!! Let's look forward to another tremendous decade of Frog Football.

Morning Dump

Frogs' Moss rediscovers his shooting touch in victory Star-Telegram

Washington named to All-Bowl team

Frogs post 70-58 non-conference victory over UTPA

Non-AQ coaches of the decade ESPN

Frogzilla on the cover of DCTF Winter Edition

The good folks at Dave Campbell's Texas Football released the image of the 2010 Winter Edition cover this morning, and looky there- I think we know one of those guys! And since we know that magazines often consider what impact their choice for the cover will have on sales, TCU fans ought to buy this collectable up to show the folks at DCTF that having a Frog on the cover is actually profitable.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Charlton Heston approves

That's a pretty snazzy video for what really isn't much of a spectator sport. But hosting the national championships of any sport on TCU's campus is a pretty cool deal, and I'm sure the NCAA likes this kind of marketing being done for their minor events.

B-Ball Roundup

While ESPN's Joe Lunardi had four Mountain West teams making the tournament as of last week, it's apparent that he is one of the few people around the country who actually get The Mtn, because he has dropped Colorado State from his bracketology this week after their 44-point loss at BYU on the fledgling network this past weekend. He now has just BYU (as a 4-seed), UNLV (9) and New Mexico (10) making the field from our conference. Other Texas teams in his projected bracket include Texas (1), Baylor (7) and A&M (8).

ESPN also employs a guy named Charlie Creme, who is tasked with putting together a women's bracketology. This week, he has the 13-4 Lady Frogs as a 6-seed, taking on Syracuse in the 1st round.

Suck it, Utes

There has been some chatter recently that the Frogs' 2010 recruiting class might already be full, based on the number of scholarships believed to be available. Well, there was apparently at least one more scholarship open- Matt Anderson, a running back from Vanderbilt, TX (population: 411) switched his commitment from Utah to TCU. At 6'2", 207 lbs and a 4.5 forty time, he looks like a future safety or even linebacker in GP's 4-2-5.

And since no one that reports on recruiting really knows what TCU's ever-secretive coaching staff is doing, there's no way to tell exactly how big this class will be. If it gets any bigger, you'd have to assume it would be because someone already within the program is vacating a scholarship (or transferring, if you're not into the whole brevity thing). Two names that have popped up in recruiting discussion a number of times as possibilities to come on board this class are Chris Hawkins, a wide receiver from Channelview who is currently committed to Minnesota and Danny Spond, a quarterback from Colorado who also has Stanford and Notre Dame high on his list. Both are reported to be visiting campus this weekend.