Keys to the Game – TCU

Evan Veith, Sports Reporter

Win the game before halftime

Texas continues struggling with closing out games this season, with all three of their losses coming after leading at the half. On the other hand, TCU has kept its undefeated record because of its ability to come back late in games. Three of its last four wins, including victories over ranked Oklahoma State and Kansas State, stemmed from comebacks in the second half or later. Just last week, the Horned Frogs were losing at the start of the fourth quarter but ended up rallying and defeating Texas Tech by 10 points. If the Longhorns want to come out on top on Saturday, they will need to amass a significant lead at the half and let the defense win the game in the fourth, similar to last week at Kansas State.


Give Bijan the ball

Bijan Robinson had a career highlight game on the road against Kansas State, rushing for 209 yards and a touchdown on 30 attempts. The junior running back is now fifth in rushing yards in the nation and comfortably first in the Big 12 with over 100 yards more than TCU’s Kendre Miller. Kansas State’s defense ranks eighth in the Big 12 in opponent rushing yards per attempt, but TCU also sits in the bottom half of the conference at seventh. These two defenses are similar in stopping the run, which means Robinson could execute his run game well against the Horned Frogs. The TCU defense, which implements a bend but don’t break style, is most vulnerable when their opponent’s running game is working well. A bend don’t break defense focuses on stopping big plays while letting short plays go. Robinson will be the key factor to Texas’ offensive success.


Limit Max Duggan’s time in the pocket

Max Duggan is one of the most efficient quarterbacks in the country, ranking fourth in passer efficiency while still ranking third in yards per completion, which will likely spell trouble for the Longhorn defense. Duggan is one of the best downfield passers in the country, and having projected first-round pick Quentin Johnston and deep threat Taye Barber at wide receiver gives Duggan plenty of options for huge plays. If he’s given more than a few seconds to pass, then Duggan has the ability to completely change the game in just one pass. UT’s number one goal on defense should be forcing Duggan to make quick throws and not letting Johnson and Barber run wild in the deep third of the Texas defense.