Thursday, October 13, 2011

Craig Thompson's shorts might match Wyoming's jerseys

AP Source: Big East, Boise must be persuaded

Now, to be sure, this is maybe a step above the rumor mill, but if this is true and Boise State is even CONSIDERING moving to the Big East, you gotta figure their membership in the MWC is going to be a short marriage.
And if Boise State bolts, I think I'll send Commissioner Thompson a very nice letter to express my joy in watching his favorite knob walk out and leave him curled up in a ball crying... the same way BSU left the WAC.
Guess it's good that you got as many BSU home games as possible this year, cuz the blue turf may not be around to keep the MWC alive much longer.

But I'm not bitter or anything.

This Weekend's Games of Interest

Boise State (5-0) at Colorado State (3-2) ~ 5:00pm Saturday on The Mtn
-CSU has had two weeks to prepare for the Broncos, but do we really expect that to make a difference? The only interest I have in watching this one is to see the inevitable sign from a dumbass Boise State fan pointing out that the Rams are wearing green jerseys while playing on a green field. They fail to realize that the whole rule about them wearing blue at home isn't about any competetive advantage- it's about trying to help them not look stupid.

San Diego State (3-2) at Air Force (3-2) ~ 7:00pm tonight on CBS-College
-Savvy move by CBS-College to set aside this Mountain West 3rd place game for a Thursday night broadcast. I guarantee this game is more entertaining than the train-wreck that The Office has become. I know I'll be interested to see who wins this game, so that we can judge which road performance by the Frogs was more impressive.

UNLV (1-4) at Wyoming (3-2) ~ 1:00pm Saturday on The Mtn
-Things have really turned south for Doo-Doo Brown lately, as they've followed up a 3-0 start with a 38-14 loss to Nebraska and a 63-19 loss to Utah State. If you're going to laugh at a blowout loss to a nobody team from Utah, though, I feel compelled to bring up UNLV's 41-16 setback at the hands of Southern Utah. They followed that gem up with a 37-0 loss to Nevada last week, so this one's really shaping up as a good one...

New Mexico (0-5) at Nevada (2-3) ~ 3:00pm Saturday
-Not even Vince Gilligan could get such Albuquerque-related graphic violence on TV. New Mexico ought to be 0-6 before heading to Fort Worth next week, and you've got to think they're heavily regretting ever firing Rocky Long.






TCU non-conference opponents:

Baylor (4-1) vs. Texas A&M (3-2) ~ 11:00am Saturday on FX
-Sir Wesley Willis and I were discussing this game (which I cannot WAIT to watch!) and how the best part is that one of these teams has to lose. I'm not much of a gambler, but I've got to think the over/under for this one is somewhere around 125 given the superior offenses and turrrble defenses involved. Hopefully the FX cameras get some footage from the awesome A&M tailgates.

SMU (4-1) vs. Central Florida (3-2) ~ 2:30pm Saturday on FSN
-This is one of the few times that SMU will face a decent defense in Conference USA. The Mustangs are trying to keep pace with Houston in the Western Division, and to do so they'll have to take care of one of the Eastern Division favorites. The injection of however many Orlando douchebags into the douchebaggery of The Boulevard ought to be an interesting backdrop for any amateur sociologists out there.

BYU (4-2) at Oregon State (1-4) ~ 4:00pm Saturday on Fox College Sports
-The Beavers have shown some improvement since their season-opening loss to Sacramento State, culminating in a win over Arizona last week, but they are still a shell of the Rodgers brothers-led team that took on the Frogs in Arlington last year. This one's got meh written all over it.

Louisiana-Monroe (1-4) at Troy (2-3) ~ 6:00pm Saturday on ESPN3.com
-Veteran's Memorial Stadium on the campus of Troy University used to be named Movie Gallery Stadium, until that company filed for bankruptcy and ceased operations in 2010. I feel like all of that might be my fault, since I rented Wet Hot American Summer at a Movie Gallery located inside a Wal-Mart while working as a camp counselor in the summer of 2002. I still have that copy. Sorry!

Portland State (3-2) at Montana (3-2) ~ 2:00pm Saturday
-Montana has appeared in the FCS national championship game seven times since 1995 (two under former Wyoming coach Joe Glenn and three under current UNLV coach Bobby Hauck), so a win in Missoula by Portland State would be quite the accomplishment.




This is a fun change, huh? But I'm sure you'll all be missing my UConn and Rutgers previews, won't you?

Oklahoma (5-0) at Kansas (2-3) ~ 8:00pm Saturday on ESPN2
-This one could get ugly. The Jayhawks have already allowed 66 points to Georgia Tech and 70 against Oklahoma State last week, so style points-minded Bob Stoops isn't likely to take it easy on them. Most KU fans probably don't even give a shit about this game, since basketball season and their annual disappointing second-round exit are just around the corner.

Oklahoma State (5-0) at Texas (4-1) ~ 2:30pm Saturday on ABC
-By now, you've probably already heard the stat that the Longhorns are undefeated in the week after the AT&T Red River Rivalry under Mack Brown. That will obviously be tested this Saturday when the Pokes come to Austin. I actually think they've got a shot to pull it off, though.

Kansas State (5-0) at Tetch (4-1) ~ 6:00pm Saturday on FSN
-I always felt like the Red Raiders were probably more comfortable playing against Big 12 North teams, since most of their fans would actually consider Lubbock to be a beautiful, metropolitan oasis. This will be their second straight week hosting a Top 25 team, and it'll be interesting to see if they continue their one-game streak of vandalizing their opponents' busses...which are actually owned by a charter company in Lubbock instead of the visiting university.

Iowa State (3-2) at Missouri (2-3) ~ 1:00pm Saturday
-This is one of those games that I would always talk shit about...before TCU joined the Big 12. But now that the Frogs will be playing each of these teams on an annual basis (unless Missouri gets the head-scratching SEC invite that's been rumored for a while now), I guess I'll tune in...except that it's not on TV. Oh well.

Frogs in the NFL: Weekend Preview.


The preview will be a bit shorter this week due to two teams with Frogs sitting this one out.

Game of the Week:

Cincinnati Bengals vs. Indianapolis Colts. Noon. CBS. Raise your hands if you thought Andy Dalton's Bengals would be the team with the 3-2 record and the Colts 0-5 heading into this one? Raise your hand if you thought Andy Dalton would be giving up 7 points in this one with the Vegas types? I have a feeling Andy's mom is the only one, if she's a reader. Really impressive stuff from ole Red. If you haven't jumped on the Sunday Ticket wagon yet for Fantasy purposes, I bought it 50/50 for Red Zone Channel and Bengals games and haven't regretted it once. It just makes me so proud!

The Colts clearly aren't the same without Peyton Manning under center and they've got to be kicking themselves at least a little bit for not taking Dalton in the draft this past year. I don't think Red is the vengeful type, but it has to be in the back of his mind at least a little bit, doesn't it? Dalton hasn't been over the top statistics wise, and fortunately he hasn't had to be because of the surprise success of the Bengals Defense. If DC Mike Zimmer isn't already on the short list of assistant of the year, then something is broken with that system. The Colts don't have a great passing defense - 254 yards per game - but they have the second worst run D in the league and have to be kind of broken at this point. Could be more of the same from Red, Ced and... AJ.

On the other side of the ball is Jerry Hughes has seen a small amount of snaps but is probably going to be on the bread line when his rookie contract runs out. He had one tackle and has 4 for the year.

Other Games.

Green Bay Packers vs. St. Louis Rams. Noon. Fox. I'm not for certain Marshall Newhouse will get another start, but it shouldn't matter for the Pack when the lowly Rams come to town. Green Bay is due a loss eventually, but it won't be this week.

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Pittsburgh Steelers. Noon. CBS. Similar to the game above with Newhouse, I'm not sure Drew Coleman will even play for the Jags due to a bo bo on his noggin, but at 1-4 the Jags really can't lose any starters. The passing defense - 10th in the league - has been a bright spot and they'll need all the help they can get to slow down Rapeslithberger.

NYJ vs. Miami Dolphins. 7:30PM Monday. ESPN. After catching his first career TD last weekend, Jeremy Kerley, LDT and crew look to get back into the win column against divisional foe Miami. Wow, that was a pretty professional looking sentence. Let's try that again: If Rex Ryan would stop making terrible home videos about his wife's feet and switch his fetish to hands, he'd realize he has a pretty special rookie athlete lining up out wide in Jeremy Kerley. That's a little better. Tomlinson hasn't seen the field too much this season as the Jets are set on Shonn Greene at starter, but Kerley could get some catches against the 31st ranked passing unit. Anyway, at 2-3 the Jets need a win, especially at home against the winless Dolphins who have pretty much put the concrete shoes on the career of HC Tony Sparano. If you like laughing at ESPN's scheduling ineptitude, please review the upcoming Monday night games. I have no idea whose idea it was to televise Jacksonville and the Chiefs in back to back weeks, but hopefully that person is fired. Flex-scheduling, ESPN needs it.

The Seahawks and Cardinals are idle this week.


Midseason Review: Defense

If my review of the offense's first six ballgames seemed a bit rosy, it's because things have been going pretty well when TCU has had the ball this season. Despite being a program built on premiere defense, however, the Frog defense has struggled in the early going this fall.

Defensive Line:
It seems as if the Frogs are struggling to put pressure on the QB, you might be surprised that the defensive line is actually on pace to record more sacks than they did a year ago. That's in large part due to Forced Fumble Monster Stansley Maponga's 4.5 and Over-Achieving D-Tackle DJ Yendrey's 2.5. They aren't stuffing the run nearly as well, though, giving up 133 rush yards per game as opposed to just 99 in 2010. In addition to the stand-out play of the guys mentioned previously, I've also been very impressed by the quartet of young tackles- sophomore Ray Burns and freshmen Chucky Hunter, Jon Lewis and David Johnson.

Linebackers:
I really hate to be critical of this group, given the injuries they've sustained. Last year's leading tackler, Tanner Brock, is out for the year. Kenny Cain missed the SDSU game with a mystery ailment and Tank Carder has apparently been playing with pins in his hand all season. Kris Gardner stepped in admirably in the SDSU game and Deryck Gildon looks like a star of the future. As a unit, though, they were essentially deemed irrelevant by June Jones' gameplan in the SMU game and they've all struggled with tackling all season. My theory is that the LBs in a 4-2-5 are asked to do a lot, and that it's made even more difficult when other areas of the defense are struggling. As this group gets healthy and the rest of the defense starts to jel, I look for Tank to reclaim his status as a ridiculous playmaker and the linebackers in general to be a team strength once again.

Secondary:
Oh, boy. Without pointing fingers at specific guys, it's become pretty clear that the biggest difference between 2010 and 2011 is the pass defense. It will probably not surprise you that this year's squad has already given up almost as many yards (1,544) this year as they did in all of last year (1,674). I'm not sure what to make of the situation, but they didn't seem to look nearly as lost against SDSU. Hopefully the week off can give the coaching staff the opportunity to fix whatever fundamental problems exist and start to identify leaders amongst this bunch.

Do we really think we can replace Aggie?

Sadly, I don't think we stand a chance at showing up this tailgating phenomenon once we hit the Big 12.

Enjoy.

Morning Dump



Football:


Frogs still searching for complete game Star-Telegram



Big 12:


How will TCU's move affect recruiting? ESPN


Revenue, scheduling details emerge in wake of TCU's jump to Big 12 Star-Telegram


TCU to the Big 12: what's changed since the SWC days Houston Press


Texas will play on Thanksgiving, but not against TCU Austin American-Statesman


Big 12 schools extend warm welcome to TCU Star-Telegram



Hoops:


Six new players give TCU men's basketball reason for optimism Star-Telegram


Mittie discusses MWC-favorite Lady Frogs Star-Telegram



Other:


Chris Del Conte's Notes on a Scorecard gofrogs.com


TCU volleyball headed west for two key conference matches gofrogs.com