Big 12 Previews

Kansas vs. TCU: Preview and Prediction

NCAA Football: Kansas at Texas Christian

Here is everything you need to know in our Kansas vs. TCU preview and prediction.

Game info

2 p.m. CT | Saturday, October 27th 2018 | Memorial Stadium, Lawerence, Kansas

TV: FS1 (Brian Custer, Ben Leber)

Local Radio: WBAP 820 AM, KTCU 88.7 FM (Brian Estridge)/Jayhawk IMG Radio Network (Brian Hanni)

Satellite Radio: Sirius 105, XM 199

Key Players

TCU Horned Frogs

QB Michael Collins

With Shawn Robinson done for the season with a shoulder injury, TCU’s season falls on the arm and legs of Penn transfer Michael Collins. Collins looked decent in place of Robinson last week against Oklahoma, finishing 7 of 17 for 142 yards with two touchdowns to one interception. He also rushed seven times for 36 yards.

DT Corey Bethley

We always give the love to Preseason Big 12 Player of the Year Ben Banogu, so let’s share it with Bethley, who is one of the more underrated and underappreciated defensive lineman in the conference. He’s T-12th in the Big 12 with three sacks and ranks seventh in the conference with 7.5 tackles for loss. Bethley and the rest of the TCU defensive line goes up against a Kansas team that has allowed 23 sacks in seven games, tied for the most in the Big 12.

 

Kansas

RB Pooka Williams Jr.

TCU’s rushing defense hasn’t lived up to its usual standards so far, so Pooka, who is the most explosive player on the Kansas offense, might be able to do some damage. Williams has 620 rushing yards on 88 carries, averaging 7.0 yards per carry. Last week against Texas Tech, he had 16 carries for 81 yards. He ranks third in the Big 12 at over 100 yards rushing per game.

DB Hasan Defense

Junior defensive back Hasan Defense has been a turnover machine in recent weeks for the Jayhawks, helping force four turnovers the past two games. He had two interceptions against WVU’s Will Grier and then snagged another interception in KU’s game at Texas Tech and also picked up a fumble, nearly returning it for a touchdown. Kansas’ defense continues to lead the Big 12 and ranks second in the FBS in turnovers gained with 21 on the season.

Key Storylines

TCU Horned Frogs

The Horned Frogs need to protect the ball. That’s it really and they’ll leave Lawrence with a comfortable win. But with a quarterback making his first start for the Horned Frogs going on the road, albeit not in a traditionally difficult environment, turnovers can keep the Jayhawks in this one. And despite their struggles, KU is +14 in turnover margin, by far the best in the Big 12 (by nine). TCU has struggled in this department in 2018, ranking dead last in the conference with a -10 turnover margin, very unusual for a Gary Patterson-coached team. Their 16 turnovers lost also rank last.

Kansas Jayhawks

Kansas needs to take advantage of its opportunities when they present themselves. KU had two chances inside Texas Tech’s 10-yard line and walked away with just three points and a turnover. That’s not going to cut it if they’re going to win a game or two moving forward. TCU’s red zone defense is middle of the pack in the Big 12 and the Horned Frogs have only forced six turnovers this season, tied for the fewest in the conference.

Prediction

TCU 35, Kansas 14

TCU has been through a rough stretch and is going to be looking to put a beating on someone after losing three of its four games to Top 11 teams, while also leading two of those games, Texas and Ohio State, in the second half. TCU has been banged up in its secondary in recent weeks, but that won’t make a difference against a Kansas team that is inept at throwing the ball. Also, TCU has been great on third downs. TCU tops the Big 12 and is 12th nationally in third- down defense, allowing opponents to convert on just 29.9 percent (29-of-97) of its opportunities. Kansas has the worst third-down offense in the conference. Horned Frogs roll in Lawrence.

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