When you talk TCU, you're talking defense. That's a big tribute to their head coach Gary Patterson. Now, in his 13th season, Patterson has transformed the Horned Frogs program from mid major, to national player, BCS Bowl winning and now Big 12 member. Even their home, Amon Carter Stadium reflects this, as it is now among the nicest stadiums in the league.
One thing has been the constant and that is the TCU defense, which is salty again this season. The Horned Frogs are athletic, fast and very physical. For Kansas to come out victorious Saturday afternoon, they must respond to being punched in the mouth and they must punch back.
TCU uses a 4-2-5 scheme that focuses on speed and getting guys to the ball by turning them loose on the field. Once they get there, they'll light you up. Up front, they're led by two good defensive ends in senior Jon Koontz (6-2 265) and sophomore Davonte Fields (6-4 240), who turned in a great freshman campaign in 2012. He looks to be the next in the line of great TCU defenders. Junior Chucky Hunter (6-1 300) and sophomore Davion Pierson (6-2 305) make up the tackles. Hunter has two sacks on the season.
The two linebackers are extremely active and are versatile. Juniors Jonathan Anderson (6-3 227) and Marcus Mallet (6-1 227) are among the team leaders in tackles with 29 each. Mallet has five tackles for loss and two sacks.
The secondary feature three safeties in junior Sam Carter (6-1 215), senior Elisha Olabode (5-11 193) and sophomore Chris Hackett (6-2 195). Hackett has been the big play man so far with a team leading 35 tackles, three TFLs and two sacks along with three interceptions, which ties Carter for the team lead. Olabode is the team's second leading tackler with 32 stops.
Sophomore punter Ethan Perry (6-4 230) averages almost 40 yards per punt. His long of 52 yards came in last week's 20-17 loss at Oklahoma, which featured a season high nine punts.