This week’s Roundtable heads to Amon Carter Stadium in Ft Worth with a battle with the Horned Frogs.
1. How does Texas topple the Horned Frogs?
Eric Nahlin – Texas has to shut down the QB/RB run game and force Hill to throw into coverage where he’s susceptible to bad decisions. On offense the quick passing game has to set the tone. Texas will need some YAC to win. I don’t see the run game adding much.
Justin Wells – By maintaining the defensive performances that has kept UT in most games this year + a similar game plan to Baylor where you run the ball effectively and don’t turn it over. These two schools don’t like each other. Texas has a little payback on its mind.
Ian Boyd – On D it’s as simple as matching what Iowa State did in preventing red zone conversions by the Frogs. Like so many other Big 12 offenses, the Frogs are much better when they can score from outside of the red zone with their speed. If you limit their big plays and stop them short of the end zone they tend to bog down. On offense Texas has to run the ball well enough to stay ahead of the chains and protect the passing game from ultra-conservative coverages.
Joe Cook - By showing life on offense. I expect the defense to continue to be extremely difficult to get past. Kenny Hill and TCU cruised over the Longhorns last year in a game that closed out the Strong era. Orlando’s defense will be much more difficult to get past, so the big key here is if the Texas offense can put some points on the board to help the defense out.
Scipio Tex - Play lights out on defense, don’t let Kevontae Turpin make a play on special teams and hope the Longhorn offense can scratch together just enough offense and red zone conversions to win a tight one. Texas has to win one of these, right?
2. Impact players on offense and defense
Eric Nahlin - Reggie Hemphill-Mapps. Malik Jefferson. This game is very similar to Ok St when Jefferson had 14 tackles.
Justin Wells - On offense, Shane Buechele. If he can find some of that early freshman magic, Texas can do this. On defense, its Gary Johnson or whoever is responsible for the typical TCU water bug, Turpin.
Ian Boyd - Texas needs a strong day on offense from freshman RB Daniel Young so that Shane Buechele can deliver the winning shots to Lil’Jordan Humphrey and the wide receivers. Keep an eye on another big day from Collin Johnson as well if Texas can hit him in man coverage, TCU’s cornerbacks are on the smaller side.
Joe Cook - Shane Buechele. He played really well against Baylor, but TCU is a tougher test. More quick passing helps out No. 7, more of that means more success for the Texas offense. Defense, I’ll go with Antwuan Davis. The senior has an opportunity to shine, and I believe he will do well in PJ Locke’s place, who Herman called “very doubtful” on Monday.
Scipio Tex – On offense, LJH will be matched up on a smallish TCU secondary. If he can use his size and physicality to move the chains and secure a touchdown in the red zone, it may sway the game for the good guys. On defense, this is a big game for Malik Jefferson. We need double digit tackles vs. a lively TCU running game and for him to make Kenny Hill miserable on passing downs.
3. Score prediction
Eric Nahlin – 24-21, TCU. A Texas win wouldn’t surprise and they’re certainly due but this will be the best defense we see all year and the offense is off the tracks.
Justin Wells – Texas 17, TCU 14. Rowland kicks the game-winner…from 18 yards out.
Ian Boyd – TCU 17-10, I don’t love Texas’ chances on the road without Sam Ehlinger or Toneil Carter to boost the running game.
Joe Cook – TCU 27 Texas 17
Scipio Tex – TCU-20, Texas-14.
4. Game of the week
Eric Nahlin – Bedlam. Go Pokes.
Justin Wells – OU/Okie State. The winner takes the Big 12 title, IMO.
Ian Boyd – Bedlam will certainly have my attention. We may get this game again as a rematch in the B12 title game but that’s far from certain. I’m curious to see if Mike Stoops will deliver one more egg or if OU will pull through and beat down their little brother for the umpteenth time.
Joe Cook – Bedlam. Sooners.
Scipio Tex – Oklahoma State vs. Oklahoma. Expect a shootout.
5. Upset pick of the week
Eric Nahlin – SMU over UCF. And Morris still won’t be good enough for Aggie fans.
Justin Wells – Sooners take out Mike’s Mullets in a shootout.
Ian Boyd – Oklahoma is somehow an underdog against OSU so that’s an easy call.
Joe Cook – SMU upsets UCF in Dallas.
Scipio Tex – Arizona over USC.
6. College Football Playoff Top 4
Eric Nahlin – Alabama, Georgia, Notre Dame, Clemson. Bama claims #1 after beating LSU this weekend. Ok St beats OU to keep the Sooners out. Clemson has a tough one versus NC State.
Justin Wells – Georgia, Alabama, Notre Dame, OU
Ian Boyd – They won’t change from a week ago. Georgia, Bama, Notre Dame, Clemson.
It’ll be interesting to see what happens if Notre Dame and Clemson win out but Oklahoma and Wisconsin do likewise while Alabama/Georgia go undefeated/lose the SEC title game.
Joe Cook – Georgia, Alabama, OU, Clemson