When and where: October 26, 2019, Amon G. Carter Stadium, Fort Worth, TX, 3:30 PM ET
After barely escaping Kansas, the Texas Longhorns turn their attention to a Big 12 Conference road game against the TCU Horned Frogs on Saturday afternoon. It took an offensive shootout for quarterback Sam Ehlinger and the Longhorns offense to finally put the Jayhawks away. Ehlinger finished the game with 399 passing yards, four touchdowns and one interception. The Horned Frogs had no such luck in their recent run-in with Kansas State, who held them to 17 points and only 138 passing yards.
Defense nearly blows it for TexasIt took everything Ehlinger and the Texas offense had to stave off a feisty Kansas team at home last week. A pitiful defensive effort nearly led to a massive upset, which would have ruined the Longhorns’ top-25 ranking. Even in victory, the fallout from that game should have Texas fans concerned heading into Saturday’s game against the conference’s No. 1-ranked defense.
If the TCU offense can put points on the board and Texas’ defense continues to be a doormat, this game will have upset potential written all over it. Ehlinger won’t have the luxury of slinging the ball around against a Kansas defense that sits dead last in the conference this time out. TCU’s defense is only allowing a total of 281.0 yards per game, along with limiting the least amount of long scrimmage plays. They don’t give up big plays, and Texas is going to have to work for every yard.
The only drawback for TCU has been on the offensive side of the ball. This is a perfect chance for Texas’ defense to find a little redemption. TCU’s offensive front has struggled keeping Duggan upright, and everything they do is funneled through the rushing efforts of tailbacks Darius Anderson and Sewo Olonilua. If the Longhorns can slow down the rushing attack, they have a great shot at stalling the TCU offense.
The defense is expected to be without hard-hitting safety Caden Sterns (knee) for Saturday’s tilt.
Can the offense save TCU?Despite their offensive shortcomings, TCU had to like what they saw on film between Kansas and the Texas defense. Kansas has the third-worst offense in the conference, and they were still able to treat the Longhorns defense like a game of sandlot football. If TCU is able to do the same on Saturday, they’ll shock the world and come away with an upset.
Ehlinger won’t have nearly as easy of a time throwing into the teeth of a TCU defense that ranks second in the conference against the pass. They are only giving up 181.0 yards per game through the air with eight passing interceptions on the season.
Wouldn’t Texas simply lean on steady running back Keaontay Ingram in response?
Good luck running into TCU’s No. 1-ranked rushing defense. The Horned Frogs are the total package capable of challenging the Texas offense everywhere. On the offensive side of the ball, they lack the flashy play with Duggan behind center, but he is efficient enough to not make the mistakes that will hand Texas the game. In 142 passing attempts so far this season, the freshman quarterback has yet to throw an interception.
Safety La’Kendrick Van Zandt has already been ruled out for Saturday’s game, and wideout TreVontae Hights is officially listed as questionable with a leg injury.
Defensively, the Horned Frogs need to slow down Ehlinger.
He’s just a good player. He’s a finisher,” Patterson said of the junior quarterback (from 247sports.com). “He’s really grown up, he’s been the difference in their offense. They have good skill players, they have their offensive line back, been banged up at running back so they’ve kind of had it by committee, they’ve gotten a couple wide receivers back, but he’s really done a good job.”
- Longhorns are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games after allowing more than 450 total yards in their previous game.
- Horned Frogs are 4-1 ATS in the last 5 head-to-head meetings.