TCU Horned Frogs Team Preview

After a down year in 2018, the TCU Horned Frogs will look to rebound and compete for New Years Six bowl games.

2018 Season in Review

The 2018 season was a campaign to forget for coach Gary Patterson, whose defense had to carry the 107th ranked offense in the nation. At just 23.5 points per game and a revolving door at quarterback, wins were tough to come by in Fort Worth. The Horned Frogs managed to crack 20 points just three times in Big 12 play, with one of those losses coming against perennial cellar dweller Kansas.

TCU managed to become bowl eligible with a 6-6 regular season record, with each of their Big 12 winning margins being a touchdown or less. The Frogs closed out the season with two straight wins before sneaking into the Cheez-It Bowl and beating California 10-7.

Key Returning Players (2018 Stats)

  • WR Jalen Reagor (Junior) - 72 Receptions | 1,061 Rec Yards | 11 Total TD
  • OLB Garrett Wallow (Junior) - 72 Total Tackles | 5.5 TFL | 3.0 Sacks
  • CB Jeff Gladney (Redshirt Senior) - 41 Total Tackles | 2 INT | 12 Pass Def
  • DT Corey Bethley (Junior) - 27 Total Tackles | 9.5 TFL | 5.0 Sacks

With nowhere to go but up, the offense is bound to improve, especially with an offensive line that will have pretty much everyone back. That group will include seniors Anthony McKinney and Lucas Niang at the tackle spots, and Cordel Iwuagwu at left guard. Top receiver Jalen Reagor is back in Fort Worth, where he should get some support from sophomore Taye Barber who is coming off a decent freshman season.

The Frogs will likely spread the love when it comes to carries, as senior running backs Darius Anderson and Sewo Olonilua are expected to split those duties. The big question looming over the program is who takes over at quarterback, whether it is Kansas State transfer Alex Delton, redshirt freshman Justin Rogers, junior Michael Collins, or Ohio State transfer Matthew Baldwin (assuming he is granted immediate eligibility).

The defense is in better shape, as the secondary is expected to be senior heavy with corners Jeff Gladney and Julius Lewis, along with safeties Innis Gaines and Vernon Scott. Linebacker Garret Wallow is the top returning tackler, and will be joined by redshirt senior Montrel Wilson. Junior defensive tackle Corey Bethley will anchor the defensive line which got a boost in experience with the arrival of South Carolina graduate transfer Shameik Blackshear.

Key Departures

  • DE Ben Banogu (Graduation)
  • DE L.J. Collier (Graduation)
  • LB Ty Summers (Graduation)
  • QB Shawn Robinson (Transferred to Missouri)

The defense has been the forte of this program ever since coach Patterson took the reins in 2000. As a result, TCU loses key players on that side of the ball to the NFL seemingly every year. Although all of their draft picks were fifth-year seniors, each of these losses will sting. Pass rushers L.J. Collier and Ben Banogu were taken in the first two rounds of the draft by the Seattle Seahawks and Indianapolis Colts respectively. The biggest loss on offense is the graduation of receiver/return specialist Kavontae Turpin who was always a threat to break free in the open field.

Notable Recruits (Star Ratings and Rankings According to Rivals.com)

  • DE Adam Plant - 4 Star | 6-6, 260lb | Bishop Gorman HS | Las Vegas, NV
  • RB Darwin Barlow - 4 Star | 5-11, 200lb | Newton HS | Newton, TX
  • DT Karter Johnson - 4 Star | 6-3, 286lb | Pickerington Central HS | Pickerington, OH
  • QB Max Duggan - 4 Star | 6-2, 180lb | Lewis Central School | Council Bluffs, IA

Having to compete with the likes of Texas, Texas A&M, and Baylor for in-state recruits has forced TCU to not be over-reliant on the Lone Star State for talent. This recruiting class is a prime example, as the Horned Frogs locked up defensive end Adam Plant, the second-ranked recruit from the state of Nevada. TCU made their crowded quarterback room even more packed by signing Max Duggan, the top QB recruit in Iowa and ninth overall pro-style passer.

TCU fans will get a taste of nostalgia in the coming seasons, as coach Patterson and his staff managed to get a commitment from Trevius Tomlinson, the nephew of Pro Football Hall of Famer and the school's leading rusher, LaDainian Tomlinson.

2019 Schedule

Date Opponent
August 31st Arkansas-Pine Bluff
September 14th @ Purdue
September 21st Southern Methodist
September 28th Kansas
October 5th @ Iowa State
October 19th @ Kansas State
October 26th Texas
November 2nd @ Oklahoma State
November 9th Baylor
November 16th @ Texas Tech
November 23rd @ Oklahoma
November 29th West Virginia

The Horned Frogs do not have an overwhelming schedule at first glance, as the road trip to Oklahoma is without question the biggest obstacle. Up and coming Iowa State could be a tricky foe away from home, however, while the same can be said about Oklahoma State who should see some improvement. Having Texas and Baylor at home in Amon G. Carter Stadium will help, as will games against Texas Tech and West Virginia, both of whom are entering the season with new head coaches.

Where to Bet on Win Totals and Conference Title Odds in New Jersey

New Jersey residents can log on to 888Sport to wager on TCU's Big 12 title odds as well as their win total. With an over/under of 7.5 wins, bettors will need to ask themselves which TCU team will show up in 2019.

Big 12 Conference Winner

Sportsbook TCU Link
888Sport NJ +1400

* 21+ | NJ only | If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, call 1-800-GAMBLER

Number of Games Won - Excluding Bowl Games & Play Offs

Regular season only. Conference championship games do not count.

Sportsbook Over 7.5 Under 7.5 Link
888Sport NJ +103 -125

* 21+ | NJ only | If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, call 1-800-GAMBLER

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