Conference: Big XII
Season Record: 3-0
Last Week's Opponent: SMU (W 56-0)
Points Scored Per Game: 44.7 (Ranks 10th Nationally)
Points Allowed Per Game: 7 (Ranks 2nd Nationally)
Last Meeting With Sooners: October 5, 2013 (L 20-17)
The TCU Horned Frogs have quietly built a decent resume early in the college football season. The Oklahoma Sooners seem to be the only thing standing in the way of a national ranking for the Frogs and, as we've learned from seasons past, OU had better be ready for a slugfest on Saturday afternoon.
A suffocating defense is nothing new to a Gary Patterson coached team but this year he's also working with a vastly improved offense. The Frogs have the Big XII's third best scoring offense to go along with their league-leading defense.
TCU's Trevone Boykin has led a much improved offense in 2014
Balance has been the key for TCU on the offensive side of the ball. Led by dual-threat quarterback Trevone Boykin, TCU is averaging 5.7 yards per carry on the season. Junior B.J. Catalon leads the team with 172 yards, on 35 carries, with both he and Boykin crossing the goal line an equal three times each.
Boykin is also completing 64% of his passes for an average of 286 yards per game. He's thrown eight touchdown strikes on the year to just a single interception. Juniors Josh Doctson and Deante' Gray are tied with a team-high 13 receptions each, but Kolby Listenbee has been the threat to go long with an average of 18.8 yards per reception.
Oklahoma is going to have to work on defense to make the Frogs off balanced. The most simple method of doing this is to focus on stopping the run. Just because it's simple doesn't necessarily mean that it'll be easy. Especially when stopping the run means containing a dual threat quarterback.
TCU leads the Big XII in every defensive category and have been totally dominant over their opponents. Opposing quarterbacks are completing just 49% of their passes against the Frogs who have nabbed five interceptions and just allowed one touchdown through the air. Opponents haven't had any success on the ground either, with TCU allowing just 2.1 yards per carry and less than 100 rushing yards per game.
Senior linebacker Paul Dawson leads the team with 21.5 total tackles on the season. He has also recorded a sack, and interception, as well as three fumble recoveries. Junior James McFarland leads the way in quarterback sacks with three take downs, but a total of eleven defenders have been in on TCU's thirteen sacks this season.
Attacking the TCU defense is going to require exactly what OU hopes to take away from the Frogs, balance. If the Sooners can be balanced, then they should find offensive success.