Rocky Road to the Title

Heading to Oklahoma on Saturday, the TCU head coach has to deal with the same questions about health that have plagued his team since the first game. After losing large chunks of his defense earlier this season. Patterson must now possibly deal with two irreplaceable players on offense. Quarterback Trevone Boykin and receiver Josh Doctson two cornerstone pieces who had both been mentioned in Heisman talk, remain questionable to play against the Sooners (9-1, 6-1 Big 12). Patterson states that he won’t force the issue with either player despite being in the midst of the Big 12 race. He expected to know by Thursday although no announcement is planned until the game. Patterson said Boykin (right ankle) would only need practices on Thursday and Friday to get ready because of his familiarity with the TCU system. If Boykin can’t go, then Patterson will be forced to start redshirt freshman Foster Sawyer. Foster Sawyer completed just one of seven passes against Kansas, it was for a 42-yard touchdown. And he led TCU to two fourth-quarter drives after replacing Bram Kohlhausen.

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BCS Bid

The initial takeaway from this season’s first set of college football playoff rankings is simple: It will be an uphill climb for any Big 12 team to make the playoff. Despite being ranked second and fifth, respectively, in the AP poll, Baylor and TCU were ranked sixth and eighth by the committee. Now, objectively, you can argue the Big 12 is properly ranked. By my favorite measure of college football teams, Football Outsiders F/ rankings. Baylor and TCU are seventh and 10th. And here’s where that comes back to hurt the Big 12: When we solidify that these Big 12 schools are undeserving this early, we’re setting up the roadblocks in advance. Sure, if Baylor or TCU runs the table, they’ll be in. But if they don’t? If it turns out all four of these teams are pretty good and they play rock-paper-scissors against each other? Then there’s no way they’ll be taken seriously against their fellow one-loss teams. You can forget a one-loss TCU beating out one-loss LSU or Ohio State.

Bummer

The TCU Horned Frogs dropped by at least eight spots in the latest Top 25 College Football polls after a loss to Oklahoma State on Saturday. TCU fell to 12th in the coaches and 13th in the AP.The Horned Frogs receiver has left the game against Oklahoma State with an unknown injury. After Doctson was tackled in the second quarter, he held his arm near his own wrist before walking off the field. Doctson is doubtful to return, per the game telecast.TCU plummets out of the top ten but remains in a strong position for a Big XII title and a NY6 Bowl Bid. They now trail fellow Big XII member Oklahoma by one spot in both polls, as the Sooners are on the cusp of the top ten. These two teams will face off in Norman on November 21st. The Frogs will have Kansas at home before their last opportunities to impress the committee against ranked opponents, with the road game against Oklahoma preceding an all-important home matchup against the Bears on Black Friday.

Start to Greatness

In three seasons under Dennis Franchione, the TCU football program took a giant leap forward. In his first season, Fran led the Frogs to a 7-5 record, which included an upset win over USC in the Sun Bowl. The Frogs, who were 1-10 in 1997 under Pat Sullivan, tied Louisville for the biggest turnaround in the country with the six-win improvement in 1998. Although many believed the Frogs stood no chance, Franchione guided the Frogs to a 28-19 win over the vaunted Trojans. The victory was the first bowl win since 1957, when TCU defeated Syracuse in the Cotton Bowl. Then in 1999, TCU claimed a share of the WAC title, earning a trip to the inaugural Mobile Alabama Bowl, where TCU knocked off East Carolina, 28-14. Tailback LaDainian Tomlinson led the country in rushing in 1999, averaging over 168 yards per game for a season total of 1,850 yards. The Frogs came back with one of the best seasons in school history as the new millennium got underway. Moving as high in the polls as No. 9 and carrying the nation’s longest winning streak for a stretch, the Frogs put together a 10-2 campaign. Tomlinson again led the nation in rushing, this time with over 2,000 yards, end route to the Doak Walker Award. Following the season he was the fifth player selected in the NFL Draft.http://a.espncdn.com/media/ncf/2000/1118/photo/a_tomlinson_i.jpg

First Heisman Winner

In the 70-year history of the Heisman Trophy, five Horned Frogs have finished in the top-five in voting for the prestigious trophy. Sammy Baugh finished fourth in 1936, the second year the trophy was presented. Jim Swink finished second in 1955, while Kenneth Davis was the next Frog to receive serious consideration for the honor in 1984 when he finished fifth. In 1999, LaDainian Tomlinson placed 14th as a junior after breaking a single game rushing record of 406 yards in a game. He was fourth after his senior season in 2000. In 1938, Davey O’Brien became the first football player from both TCU and the Southwest Conference to win the award.

Coach of the Horned Frogs

Patterson received 10 National Coach of the Year honors in 2014. He was honored by the Walter Camp Football Foundation, AFCA, Associated Press, Home Depot, ESPN.com, CBSSports.com and Scout.com. He also received the Eddie Robinson Award, Paul “Bear” Bryant Award and Woody Hayes Award. Patterson has won a total of 20 National Coach of the Year honors in his 14-year head coaching tenure at TCU. Patterson’s .746 winning percentage (132-45) ranks fourth among active coaches nationally in minimum of 10 years. He is also one of just five active coaches with at least 100 victories at their current school. TCU is 30-3 when taking the field as a top-10 team under Patterson, including a 19-1 mark when in the top 5.The fifth-longest tenured head coach in the nation, Patterson became TCU’s career leader in wins with a 56-0 victory over Grambling State in the 2012 season opener. The previous TCU mark of 109 wins was held by Dutch Meyer from 1934- 52.

The Stadium

Named for the famous Fort Worth newspaper magnate who made the original donation to finance the stadium. Amon G. Carter Stadium opened in 1930 with an original seating capacity of 22,000. The first game played in the stadium was in October against Arkansas Razorbacks. Renovations in 1947 and 1955 added additional seating and an upper deck which increased capacity to 45,000. The stadium remained in this configuration until 2010 when a major renovation reduced the entire stadium to its original lower bowl. The design of the current Amon Carter stadium was influenced heavily by the surrounding architecture of Fort Worth with emphasis on Art Deco style. The Frogs opened the new stadium for the 2012 season. Amon G. Carter stadium features a natural grass field and a seating capacity of roughly 45,000. Standing-room only allowing capacity to exceed this number when ticket demand exceeds seating availability. In 2013 they added a 54 ft. video board over the North end zone with a smaller video board located in the Southeast corner.