Frogs hit the road for tough Aztec matchup

Frogs hit the road for tough Aztec matchup

The No. 6 ranked Horned Frogs are looking to keep their hopes at a Bowl Championship Series bowl game alive as they prepare for a tough ball game on the road this week against San Diego State University.

“On defense they’re tough, resilient, and on offense they don’t stop coming at you,” said head coach Gary Patterson.

Patterson stressed the importance of his team not looking ahead to the Utah game and remaining focused on a 4-4 San Diego State team that is on a two-game win streak and is still competing for a berth in this year’s Poinsettia Bowl.

“We’ve gotta keep our noses down and understand we’re gonna have to fight, claw and scratch for everything we can to come back with (a win),” Patterson said.

The Aztecs will likely be without junior wide receiver Vincent Brown but Patterson said the Frogs would have to contain a number of other players who have picked up the slack in Brown’s absence.

“(DeMarco Sampson) is catching touchdowns all over the place, and they have a tight end (Alston Umuolo) that’s caught a touchdown pass in the last three games,” Patterson said.

TCU will also have to account for the Aztecs’ running game, which Patterson said will not “have to have a running back by committee” with starting running back Brandon Sullivan in the starting line-up after being injured much of the season.

The Frogs will counter with their own rushing attack led by senior tailback Joseph Turner who ran for a career-high 226 yards and four touchdowns the last time they played San Diego State on the road.

“The O-line did great,” Turner said. “That was the most I’d run since high school, but I wasn’t even tired. I just love that field. I’m not too fast but I like to think that turf makes me faster.”

While this week’s game might seem like a mismatch to some, Patterson said he is wary of any road game.

“You’re never comfortable on the road,” he said. “Playing on the road, you’ve gotta go take games.”

Amid all the praise his team has received the past few weeks, Patterson said he is curbing his enthusiasm with so much of the season left.

“The biggest thing you worry about is you worry about your team,” Patterson said. “I know they’re staying focused and doing the things they need to do, but can we get through these next three or four games without a letdown? That’s the hard part. And if you do can you still find a way to win?”