TCU rushing attack could cause problems for WVU
Published: Thursday, July 26, 2012
Updated: Thursday, July 26, 2012 10:07
The West Virginia University football team will face a fellow newly acquired Big 12 Conference member in the Texas Christian University Horned Frogs Nov. 3.
TCU had competed in the Mountain West Conference before joining the Big 12. It was a three-time champion in a conference that seemed to be a bit overlooked in a league that didn’t have an automatic Bowl Championship Series bid.
Junior Casey Pachall will lead the way at quarterback for the Horned Frogs. As a sophomore, Pachall had the tough task of replacing one of the nation’s best in Andy Dalton.
He was just as effective, however. Pachall was able to break Dalton’s single-season records for completions with 228, completion percentage at 66.5 and yards passing with 2,921. He threw for 25 touchdowns and a mere seven interceptions.
The junior was voted second-team All-Mountain West. The 25 touchdowns were second to Dalton in school history for one season. He also ranked No. 12 in the nation in passing efficiency. Pachall should be able to have an even stronger season for the Horned Frogs in 2012.
TCU has the complete package with other offensive weapons in running backs. In fact, last season TCU was the only school in the country with three running backs to have more than 700 yards rushing.
Waymon James will be the featured back this season after losing rusher Ed Wesley after spring practice due to academic problems.
James ran for 875 yards last season, good for best on the team. The junior had 7.2 yards a carry and had his best performance at Wyoming with 181 yards.
Another option at running back will be senior Matthew Tucker. Tucker had 702 yards and a team-high 12 rushing touchdowns. His 27 career rushing touchdowns are good for sixth in school history.
A third option this season will be senior UCLA transfer Aundre Dean, who ran for 130 yards last season at TCU. He is likely to be the third running back, but may be pushed by incoming true freshman B.J. Catalon.
TCU also returns three of its top four receivers. Junior Josh Boyce will lead the receiving core after his season last year.
In two seasons Boyce has had 15 touchdown receptions, which is a mere three shy of the school record. Last year, he had 998 yards and nine touchdowns.
Other options will be senior Skye Dawson, who caught 45 passes for 500 yards and five touchdowns last season. His efforts won him Most Outstanding Player in the Poinsettia Bowl.
At the defensive line, junior Stansley Maponga is one of the nation’s best defensive ends. He was one of just four players to rank in the top 10 in forced fumbles with five and top 25 in sacks with nine as a sophomore.
Maponga recorded 13.5 tackles for loss, 55 tackles and two fumbles. This year should be as impressive.
The special teams department will be a bit of a question mark with a new kicker and punter.