There’s a new sheriff in town…
If you are a fan of the underdog the current goings on in the Big 12 should make you very, very happy. Gary Patterson and TCU are taking the conference by storm. Conference co-champions in 2014 and recruiting champs this year and next. Back when the conference was breaking up, TCU was T. Boone’s choice to replace A&M. While most favored Louisville, Pickens held tough and it appears that he should have been more careful about what he asked for.
Pickens believed that playing in the Dallas area would bolster OSU recruiting. While I suspect that he was onto something with that reasoning, he may have underestimated Head Coach Gary Patterson and the TCU leadership. TCU may end up being more than the Cowboys bargained for.
Neither OU nor OSU realized how quickly the Horned Frogs would make the transition from the Far West Intramural League to the Big 12. These guys are legit. In many ways the Horned Frogs appear to be a remake of Patterson’s protégé Bill Snyder’s K-State teams. There is one major exception to this comparison however; the Horned Frogs are located in one of the greatest football metro areas in America.
It would be like giving Bill Snyder access to great players every year. Currently, the boys from Fort Worth have the 13th best Class of 2016 according to Scout. Making matters worse for Big 12 rivals is the fact that TCU is off to an incredible start for the next recruiting cycle as well. The TCU Class of 2017 is ranked 5th in the country.
Patterson is a lot like Snyder in his ability to get the most out of his players. If he can win with a ragtag bunch of two and three star athletes, it’s scary to think what he will do with four and five star players. That’s right; TCU is only going to get better with time.
The good news for both OU and OSU is that the Sooners and Cowboys get TCU at home this year. If OU can get off to a great start at Tennessee, I like the Sooners’ chances of handling the Horned Frogs in Norman.
We need OSU to lose to Horned Frogs in Stillwater the same weekend that OU beats Baylor in Waco; ESPN Game Day will then be in Norman for the TCU/OU matchup the next week. Last year’s upset of the Sooners in Fort Worth will serve as the motivation for the Sooners to have a massive game that night.
If this comes to pass, we may have the best of both worlds. A TCU team that can keep OSU in check and an OU team that can use a resurgent TCU to make a national name for itself.