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The Skiff Orientation Edition: Welcome, Class of 28!
The Skiff Orientation Edition: Welcome, Class of '28!
By Georgie London, Staff Writer
Published May 13, 2024
Advice from your fellow Frogs, explore Fort Worth, pizza reviews and more. 

Preview: No. 17 TCU is Coach Prime, Colorado’s first test of the season

The Horned Frogs take on the Buffaloes as a non-conference opponent before welcoming them to the Big 12 next year.
TCU+head+coach+Sonny+Dykes+leads+the+team+out+of+the+tunnel+before+the+Fiesta+Bowl.+Dec.+31%2C+2022.
Tristen Smith
TCU head coach Sonny Dykes leads the team out of the tunnel before the Fiesta Bowl. Dec. 31, 2022.

In a preview of the new Big 12, the No. 17 TCU Horned Frogs will take on the Colorado Buffaloes at home in the much-anticipated debut for CU’s new head coach Deion Sanders, a.k.a. Coach Prime.

At a press briefing the day before the game, Big 12 Commissioner Brett Yormark said Sanders has “star power” that “elevates and amplifies everything.”

The fire has been further fueled by FOX’s Big Noon Kickoff coming to Fort Worth for a pre-game show.

“Every time I turn the TV on, especially FOX, I’ve seen a promotion for this game,” said Yormark. He believes all eyes will be on the matchup.

TCU is 1-0 in the all-time series, winning last year 38-13 in Boulder.

With a national championship appearance in the rear-view mirror for the Frogs, they seem to be the obvious favorite, backed by the books. TCU is a 20.5-point favorite heading into the matchup. However, both teams have undergone dramatic changes over the offseason.

The Frogs lost eight players to the 2023 NFL Draft, three others signed as un-drafted free agents and two more were invited to rookie camps.

Not only were the Frogs good last year, the Buffs didn’t produce well. They went 1-11 last season, but their staff changes and use of the transfer portal makes them an intriguing opponent.

Colorado’s new-look roster features 87 newcomers with only 25 players returning from the 1-11 Colorado roster last season. Sanders is looking to build from the ground up, which he proved as head coach of Jackson State. He led the football program to a 23-3 record and two conference championships over the last two years.

Quarterback Shedeur Sanders, son of Colorado’s head coach, had 40 touchdowns last season and Travis Hunter is an elite 5-star cornerback who plays on both sides of the football. There is no question of talent with this Colorado team, but transitioning to Power Five competition will be a real test. The Big 12 and Pac 12 are a big jump from the SWAC, the conference most of Colorado’s players played in with Jackson State.

The TCU linebackers are going to have their work cut out for them with Sanders at QB and will have to be flying sideline to sideline to prevent him from controlling the game. The TCU front seven will need to keep Sanders from using his legs and force him to throw the ball, allowing the excellent TCU secondary, led by Bud Clark and Josh Newton, to keep the Buffs out of the end zone.

On the offensive side of the ball, it’s all about reps and confidence for TCU QB Chandler Morris. Morris was the starting quarterback for the Frogs last year, but he only took a few snaps against Colorado before an injury took him out of contention.

The Frogs will have a reliable rushing attack behind Alabama-transfer Trey Sanders and receiving back weapon Emani Bailey.

The wide receivers could be the deepest position group on the team. Savion Williams, JoJo Earle and JP Richardson will be top targets for Morris.

Retuning tight end Jared Wiley only adds to the weapons at Morris’s disposal. If Morris can stay relaxed, this game should be a great confidence boost for the sophomore to build on going forward in the season.

Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. from Amon G. Carter Stadium.

Micah Pearce contributed to the reporting in this article.

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