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TCU vs. Kansas State: Preview and Prediction

NCAA Football: Kansas State at Texas Christian

Here is everything you need to know about the upcoming Big 12 Conference game in our TCU vs. Kansas State preview.

Game info

2:30 p.m. Central Time, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018, Amon G. Carter Stadium, Fort Worth, Texas

TV: FS1 (Cory Provus, Ben Leber)

Radio: K-State Sports Network/WBAP 820 AM, KTCU 88.7 FM/Sirius 105, XM 384

Fun Fact: Saturday features the two winningest coaches at their respective schools in TCU’s Gary Patterson (163) and Kansas State’s Bill Snyder (213). Patterson and Snyder are the only two active head coaches nationally with at least 163 wins at their current schools .

Key players

Kansas State

RB Alex Barnes

TCU remains a much better team against the pass than the run, so its up to Barnes to get the offense going. Barnes is second in the Big 12 averaging 117 rushing yards per game and his 9.6 points per game is also second in the conference.

LB Da’Quan Patton

Patton is second on the team in tackles (49) and has two tackles for loss. He came to K-State as the 5th-ranked JUCO OLB in the nation in the Class of 2017 and redshirted last season. He’s been solid for much of the season, including eight tackles against OU last week, and will be needed to stop the TCU running game this week.

TCU

RB Darius Anderson

Anderson gets to help his QB Michael Collins, who is just making his second career start since coming to TCU, and gash a K-State defense that ranks last in the Big 12 in rushing yards allowed. Anderson is 4th in TCU history with 6.1 yards per carry and is leading the team in rushing this season with 482 yards. But it’s been an up-and-down season in many ways for Anderson. After rushing for 154 yards against Ohio State, he went four-straight games with no more than 42 rushing yards, but he ran for 95 against KU last week.

DE Ben Banogu

Bangou was the Preseason Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and he’s finally starting to turn it on as of late. He had two sacks and eight tackles last week against KU, giving him four sacks in his last three games, and his 5.5 sacks in conference play is second in the Big 12 this season. He’ll have his way against a TCU team that’s had some issues up front.

 

Key storylines

Kansas State 

For the Wildcats, just try to get get Alex Barnes going early. That’s the best chance and then try and open things up for Skylar Thompson in the passing and option running game. Despite losing two of three, Thompson has averaged over 6.5 yards per carry during that stretch. Defensively, Duke Shelley is back at cornerback (according to the depth chart). He hasn’t played since the Wildcats beat Oklahoma State on 10/13 and is the leader of the unit. It might not matter much against TCU, who should be also trying to run before pass, but Michael Collins is going to have some butterflies with his first home start, and forcing him into a big mistake early could turn this game. On this note, neither team has been good in the turnover department, but TCU has been horrible at -12 this season, the worst in the Big 12. K-State is at -2.

TCU

The Horned Frogs have a chance to do some serious damage on the ground against a Kansas State team that is giving up the most rushing yards in the Big 12 this season. OU gashed the Horned Frogs for 322 yards last week and while TCU doesn’t have OU’s lethal rushing attack, Darius Anderson and Sewo Olonilua could have themselves a strong performance on Saturday. This will alleviate some of the pressure off of Michael Collins, who totaled 384 yards against KU, but was inconsistent throughout the loss in Lawrence. Also, the Horned Frogs have to be better against the passing game. They allowed Peyton Bender to look like Peyton Manning last week, as the KU QB had his best game of the season. Going up against Skylar Thompson, that has to change.

Prediction: TCU 28, Kansas State 21. You’ll have to be a die-hard fan to check this one out. But I’ll roll with the Horned Frogs bouncing back with a win at home following a horrendous loss to Kansas that capped off a really bad week for the program that included shutting down QB Shawn Robinson for the season and kicking KaVontae Turpin off the team. I can’t imagine how tough Gary Patterson made practice this week. K-State makes its second-straight road trip and is an unimaginative and, even according to Bill Snyder, apparently somewhat unmotivated team. The Horned Frogs pick up the win.

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