Opponents to watch: Barber, Wallow pose challenge for Texas

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Photo Credit: Courtesy of TCU Athletics | Daily Texan Staff

Fresh off of an improbable victory over Texas Tech, the Texas football team will be back at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium this Saturday to face off against the 0–1 TCU Horned Frogs. The Longhorns will look to avoid a repeat of last year’s contest, where senior quarterback Sam Ehlinger threw four interceptions on the way to a stunning 27-37 loss to an undermanned TCU squad.

Here are four Horned Frogs to watch for Saturday:

No. 15 Max Duggan — Quarterback
A 2019 Big 12 Offensive Freshman of the Year honorable mention recipient, Max Duggan won the starting quarterback job after two games and set TCU true freshman records with 2,077 yards passing and 15 touchdowns. In last year’s matchup against Texas, Duggan enjoyed a coming-out party with 345 total yards and three total touchdowns on his way to being named the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback of the Week for his performance. The sophomore was cleared to return to practice only a few days before the team’s season opener against Iowa State — he discovered during COVID-19 testing protocols that he’s had a heart condition since birth. Despite his shortened training camp, Duggan played in the second half against Iowa State and threw for three touchdowns. Look for him to play the entire game against Texas this Saturday.

No. 4 Taye Barber — Wide Receiver
A junior out of Cypress, Texas, wide receiver Taye Barber got off to a hot start last weekend against Iowa State when he hauled in five receptions for 82 yards and a touchdown. Barber is the top target in a group of unproven wide receivers as the Horned Frogs’ leading receiver over the final seven games of 2019. An All-Big 12 honorable mention as a sophomore last season, Barber will look to exploit a Texas secondary that gave up 331 yards through the air and five passing touchdowns against Texas Tech. Standing at only 5’9” and 185 pounds, Barber will look to use his 4.5-second 40-yard dash speed and decisive route running to find holes in the defensive backfield.

 

No. 30 Garrett Wallow — Linebacker
The Big 12’s 2019 tackles leader Garrett Wallow is back as the lynchpin of the Horned Frogs’ defense for his senior season. A first-team All-Big 12 performer in 2019, Wallow was all over the field with 125 total tackles and 18 tackles for loss. A captain for the 2020 season, the linebacker out of New Orleans started off his senior campaign with nine total tackles and a sack. A disruptor both in the run game and in the offensive backfield, Wallow might be the best linebacker the Texas offense will face the entire season. Interesting note: Wallow was the defender who came on a linebacker blitz and forced Iowa State junior quarterback Brock Purdy into one of the wackiest pick sixes you will ever see.

No. 7 Trevon Moehrig — Safety
This Saturday, there will be two dominant safeties wearing No. 7, only one of them being Texas junior Caden Sterns. TCU safety Trevon Moehrig enters his junior year as one of the premier players on head coach Gary Patterson’s defense. Last season, he recorded 62 total tackles and four interceptions on his way to being named a first-team All-Big 12 performer. Last year against Texas, Moehrig intercepted Ehlinger to end the third quarter. Ehlinger will need to be more careful with the ball in this year’s contest, as Moehrig has proven to be a ball hawk in his first two seasons. Standing at 6’2” and 202 pounds, the safety out of Spring Branch, Texas, has the size to compete on jump balls with bigger receivers such as Longhorns senior Tarik Black and junior Brennan Eagles.