TCU at Kansas prediction and game preview. The Horned Frogs and Jayhawks are both coming off a loss heading into their Big 12 matchup.
TCU at Kansas Game Preview
When: Saturday, October 8 – 12:00 p.m. ET
Where: Memorial Stadium, Lawrence, KS
Gary Patterson is becoming a little unhinged, the fallout of a season that has gone awry in Fort Worth. TCU, a Big 12 contender when the year began, lost for the second time Saturday, prompting Patterson to take shots at officials and even make veiled swipes at Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield. The coach might want to spend more time focusing on his defense, which allowed 534 yards in a 52-46 home loss to the Sooners. The losses continue to pile up in Lawrence, though the Jayhawks are making small strides in David Beaty’s second year. Losers of 17 straight to FBS teams, Kansas will greatly benefit with a Big 12 upset at some point in the next eight games.
What To Know About TCU
The Horned Frogs fixed their offense back in 2014 by upping the tempo for QB Trevone Boykin. Patterson’s defense, though, has become progressively worse. And that’s the rub in Fort Worth. TCU can score with the mix of Kyle Hicks’ running and the passing of Kenny Hill, who threw two of his five touchdowns Saturday to JUCO newcomer Taj Williams. But the inability to make stops will keep this program from reaching its 2016 goals. The Sooners shoved around the Frogs, who have slipped to 98th nationally at making third-down stops.
What to Know About Kansas
The Jayhawks are scoring a little more and yielding a little less, but the outcomes have been the same, three straight lopsided losses to Ohio, Memphis and Texas Tech. Turnovers have been a huge issue, with the team ranking near the bottom of the nation in giveaways. Otherwise, not so hideous, particularly on defense. Kansas is fourth in the league in yards per play allowed and second in tackles for loss, fueled by Dorance Armstrong, Daniel Wise, Marcquis Roberts and Damani Mosby in the front seven. One of these days, the Jayhawks are going to win the turnover battle and put a 60-minute scare into someone.
Offense: TCU. Sophomore QB Ryan Willis has provided a spark to the Kansas attack, but the Jayhawks are no match for TCU’s improving firepower.
Defense: TCU. Edge to the Frogs, but not as wide as many would assume, and that’s a major concern in Fort Worth.
Special Teams: TCU. Frogs again sound on special teams, aided by nine field goals in 10 attempts.
Coaching: TCU. While his reputation has taken some hits over the past year, Patterson is still one of the game’s respected head coaches.
Intangibles: TCU. Now that the coach is fired up and about to be fined, the Frogs will have no problems finding the motivation after being humbled by Oklahoma.
Matchup To Watch
Willis vs. the TCU secondary
Beaty might be ready to hand the ball to Willis full-time, since Montell Cozart has shown no ability to spark the Kansas offense. When Willis gets his chance, he’ll be looking for receivers LaQuvionte Gonzalez and Steven Sims, who’s already caught five touchdowns and wants a shot at a soft Frog secondary.
Spread: TCU -29
Over/Under: No line
TCU at Kansas Prediction
TCU isn’t what many thought the team could be in 2016. And Kansas isn’t quite the pushover it was in 2015. But until the Jayhawks can get a handle on the ball, they’ll be unable to upset superior opponents. Willis will provide a little lift on offense, and Beaty’s D will keep flying around the field. In the end, though, it won’t be enough against Hill, Hicks and an improving receiving corps that’s developing options in the wake of Josh Doctson’s graduation.
TCU at Kansas Score Prediction: TCU 41, Kansas 20