Monday, February 14, 2011

Looking Ahead: Receivers and Tight Ends

During Andy Dalton's four-year assault on the TCU record book, he was fortunate to have the same core group of receivers on the other end of his passes. With the graduation of Jeremy Kerley, Jimmy Young, Bart Johnson, Curtis Clay, Evan Frosch and Alonzo Adams, so goes 58% of the pass receptions from the 2010 season. That means that Casey Pachall-or whoever takes over at QB- will have to find a new cadre of pass-catchers.

The main candidate to take over as a go-to guy is Josh Boyce, who was a breakout star as a redshirt freshman in 2010. Boyce hauled in 34 passes for 646 yards and 6 TDs- including that incredible 93-yarder against Utah in Salt Lake City. It's a good bet that Boyce, who was already looked to in some key moments last year, will be relied upon heavily going forward.

It's hard to believe that Antoine Hicks will be a senior this fall, isn't it? We've seen flashes of his potential over his first three years- including his 75-yard exclamation point touchdown catch against BYU in Provo in '09- but he took a step back last fall catching just 13 passes for 175 yards for the whole season. Perhaps that was just a product of the incredible depth the Frogs had at receiver last year, though, so it stands to reason that he could see more touches in 2011. Junior-to-be Skye Dawson is in the same boat, having caught 12 passes for 170 yards last season. With so many seniors now gone, perhaps the coaching staff will find more ways to utilize his amazing speed.

Two other returning wide receivers who'll look to capitalize on the sudden lack of depth at the position are senior Jonathan Jones and junior Sam Shutt. Jones, at 6'4", is a big target but has caught just 5 passes in his time at TCU. Shutt, who came to TCU from Savannah, Tennessee, has yet to catch a pass in a game.

There will be at least five true freshman at receiver this fall for the Frogs- LaDarius Brown, Brandon Carter, Cameron White, David Porter and David Bush. On top of that, there's a chance that one of the incoming QBs- Trevone Boykin or Chazten Gonzales- could switch to WR.

At tight end, Logan Brock is the main candidate to take over the starting spot vacated by Evan Frosch's graduation. Brock hauled in 6 passes last year-including 2 touchdowns- fueling speculation that the position might finally be making it's comeback in the offense after many years of being an afterthought. Pushing Brock for playing time at TE will be junior Corey Fuller along with senior Robert Deck, junior Walker Dille and redshirt freshman Stephen Bryant. Dominic Merka, recruited as a quarterback, might also end up at tight end.

Now it's time to hear from you. Will Josh Boyce suffer a sophomore slump or continue to blossom into a superstar? Will Antoine Hicks or any of the other returnees fulfill their potential and produce like the last group of receivers? Which of the true freshmen will contribute in 2011? Will Ethan Grant or any other running back see some time split out wide? Who's the next superstar for the Frogs at wide receiver? Tight end? I know you've got opinions, so let's hear them!


Andy Gaines said...

What about our 4-star WR Curtis Carter that we got last year? He's blazing fast and could have a leg up on the true freshman. Any word on him?

Lyle Lanley said...

I had heard that he was planning on transferring in for this semester, but as far as I know he's still at Kilgore JC. Not sure what his status is now in terms of coming to TCU.

Spit Purple said...

I think we'll see at least two freshman make an impact in the receiving game this year. My guess would be Boyce and Hicks as the top two in terms of touches.

Tanner said...

boyce = superstar. give that man the ball and we will win games.

Reb said...

At TE Brock has played in 38 games over the last three seasons and has led the TE's in receptions over the past two years (5 rec in 2009 and 6 rec in 2010). Very versatile having played TE, FB, H-Back, and split out wide this season. Should have a breakout season in 2011.

CrabblerK3 said...

There's no reason Boyce can't have 35+ catches next year if he puts in the work this off season. Kid was crazy awesome last year. Hopefully he doesn't shrink in the spotlight.

Antoine Hicks is the sucker bet here. I always think he's going to come out and dominate, but he rarely seems to open eyes like he should. He's good but I just don't see him being a go to guy.

Instead, I place my "sucker bet" money on Dawson. In a very Al Davis like move, I'm just taking the speed.

Brandon Carter is the most interesting to me. Having watched him a good bit at Euless, I'm really interested to see how he impacts TCU's program. I expect big things and will be thrilled to see results his first season here.

I've never seen LaDarius Brown play, but he's got a lot of hype to live up to.

Evan Frosch was a special player and I think really underrated. It will be hard to replicate what he was able to do.

A TON of this depends on how well the QB transition goes.