Matchups: Rams to be a breeze for Frogs

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    Wide Receivers

    TCU: Sophomore wide out Jimmy Young still has the bulk of the receptions for the Frogs, with 26 of the team’s 98 catches, but he had no grabs last week. Senior tight end Shae Reagan is currently second on the team with 11 catches for 154 yards and leads the team in yards per reception with 14.

    CSU: Junior receiver Rashaun Greer is similar to Young in the respect that he leads the team in catches and has a great percentage of the team’s catches. Greer has 570 receiving yards on 33 snags on the season, eight of those catches and 211 of those yards came last week against UNLV.

    Advantage: TCU

    Offensive Line

    TCU: The men in the trenches had a solid game last week helping the Frogs to rush for 71 times for 383 yards and only gave up one sack in the game. The line, led by senior center Blake Schlueter, has allowed just seven sacks on the season, tied with Memphis for the 28th fewest in the nation.

    CSU: Junior center Tim Walter is in his second season as a starter and anchors his team’s offensive line that allowed two sacks last week. On the season however, the Rams have allowed 13 sacks on the season, which ranks them tied for 103rd in the nation with Texas A&M and Buffalo.

    Advantage: TCU

    Defensive Line

    TCU: Senior linebacker Jason Phillips gave the defensive line most of the credit for continuing to shut down opposing running games. The defensive line has helped the defense allow an average of 22.3 yards per game on the ground. Junior defensive end Jerry Hughes had two sacks in last week’s win.

    CSU: Senior defensive end Tommie Hill is leading his team in several of his team’s defensive categories. Hill leads the team with four tackles for loss and sacks with three, he is also leading his fellow defensive linemen with 14 total tackles. Overall, the line has had trouble getting to opponents’ quarterbacks, recording just five sacks.

    Advantage: TCU

    Linebackers

    TCU: The Frogs’ linebacker core is considered one of the best in the nation and is a big reason why TCU’s defense is currently No. 1 nation, allowing just 208.83 yards per game. Phillips was all over the field Saturday against the Aztecs, making eight total tackles, including two for a loss.

    CSU: Colorado State’s defense is ranked No. 72 in the nation and is allowing a total of 369 yards of total offense per game. Freshman linebacker Mychal Sisson is coming off of a big game against UNLV. He recorded nine total tackles, 1.5 tackles for a loss and had half of a sack in the win.

    Advantage: TCU

    Defensive Backs

    TCU: After allowing 199 yards through the air in just one quarter against Oklahoma, the Frogs’ secondary recovered last week to allow just 98 passing yards against San Diego State. Senior safety Stephen Hodge, led the rest of TCU’s secondary by recording seven total tackles and recovering a fumble last week.

    CSU: The Rams’ pass defense is ranked 83rd in the nation, allowing 227.2 yards per game through the air. Senior safety Mike Pagnotta has a pretty full stat sheet so far this season with 34 total tackles, a sack, four pass break-ups, an interception, 2.5 tackles for loss, one forced fumble and two recovered fumbles.

    Advantage: TCU

    Special Teams

    TCU: The Frogs are ranked 26th in the nation in punt returns, averaging 14.95 yards per return. The punt return defense, however, is ranked 71st in the nation allowing 10.33 yards per opponents’ return. Freshman kicker Ross Evans continues to shine, making two field goals in last week’s game, and has now made nine of his 10 attempts.

    CSU: Senior kicker Jason Smith has made both of his field goal attempts in last week’s game, his first two tries of the season. The Rams have the second worst punt return defense squad in the nation, allowing 22.33 yards per return. The only team behind them is Texas A&M, which is allowing 25.2 per return.

    Advantage: TCU

    Coaching

    TCU: The first thing head football coach Gary Patterson addressed after last week’s game was the penalties. TCU committed nine penalties for 105 yards last week, but the team continues to dominate the time of possession battle. Patterson’s team has the ball for an average of 37:09, first in the nation by more than a minute.

    CSU: Steve Fairchild is in his first year as head coach of the Rams, but this is his third appearance in Colorado State green. Fairchild was the Rams’ quarterback from 1978-1980 and was an assistant coach from 1993-2000, but Patterson should have the edge given his head coaching experience.

    Advantage: TCU