Thursday, September 10, 2009

game preview: TCU

Date/Time: September 12, 3:30 PM


Last matchup: UVA 20, TCU 10 (1994 Independence Bowl)

Last week: never happened. You hear me? That never happened!

Line: TCU by 11.5

TCU blogs: Mountain West Connection (actually it's an MWC-in-general blog but they had to pick a team affiliation to get into the Blogpoll and TCU was what they picked so whatever.)

Injury report:

OUT: CB Mike Parker, WR Bobby Smith

DOUBTFUL: QB Vic Hall, WR Dontrelle Inman, OT Lamar Milstead, LB Billy Schautz


PROBABLE: DE Nate Collins, WR Patch Duda, NT Nick Jenkins, QB Jameel Sewell, WR Matt Snyder, TE Joe Torchia

Vic Hall arrrggghhh. There'd been word of him getting banged up last week but it is not cool to see him listed as doubtful. You have to figure that Sewell will start given the (probably excessive) faith the coaches showed but also given that he's also on the injury report and, you know, the three interceptions, he'll be on a short leash and we'll see quite a bit of Marc Verica.


- For the love of Christ and pizza, do not turn over the football seven times. Obviously.

- The tackles have to be excellent. TCU's Jerry Hughes is the nation's fourth-best draft-eligible DE according to the Coiffed One, Mel Kiper. He's got the potential to really blow up our offense even without our help.

- Stop turning over the football. I mean it.

- The linebackers need to continue to improve. For the most part, they did a good job containing W&M's ground game last week, but R.J. Archer hurt us on the ground. Now there's another running quarterback to deal with: TCU's Andy Dalton was their third-leading rusher last year and this is on a team with the rare quality of having had more rushing yards than passing yards. There's only three linemen and they can only do so much. It's on the linebackers to turn eight-yard scrambles into two-yard scrambles.

- I said stop turning over the damn football.


- Do everything this week just like last week.

- Especially play offense. The passing was really, really bad, but the ground game was pathetic. Take away Hall's touchdown run and we averaged 2.5 yards a carry. We will get blown the hell up out of the water if we play offense like that, and TCU just so happens to have had the best defense in the country last year. They allowed 1.7 yards a carry. We absolutely will not score if Gregg Brandon can't figure something out. Big goose egg.

- That's really all there is to it. I'm a little worried about Dalton's ability to run, but their offense overall isn't world-beatingly scary. But our offense is, and not in the can-beat-you-so-many-ways sense. More like, Frankenstein-on-ecstasy scary.


Well, hell. I can't look much stupider than I did last week, can I? So what the heck, I think we keep this game close. Not to say we win, no. But we should be able to pull some kind of a lame-o moral victory out of this. The TCU defense is too strong and our offense has serious issues that go beyond the turnovers. And don't count out the Al Groh magic. It's not like he hasn't been here before. The guy knows a million different ways to infuriate the fan base, and a million and one ways to wiggle out of a tight spot. If we get blown out, which is eminently possible, that will be a bigger warning sign than last week was, because it'll be decisive proof that last week was no fluke. But a tight game, even if it's a loss, should give us reason enough to continue deluding ourselves that the ACC season still hasn't started and we still have enough time to turn it around and yadda yadda.


Clemson at Georgia Tech, going on right now

Wake Forest vs. Stanford, 12:00
Duke at Army, 12:00
North Carolina at Connecticut, 12:00
Virginia Tech vs. Marshall, 1:30
Boston College vs. Kent State, 2:00
NC State vs. Murray State, 6:00
Maryland vs. James Madison, 6:00
Florida State vs. Jacksonville State, 6:00

No comments: