Offense Shines, Defense Lags Behind on Day 6

Coach Patterson says more young freshmen are pushing veteran players. The TCU head coach is still looking for leaders.

TCU head coach Gary Patterson met with the media this morning following the Horned Frogs' morning practice session. If you're to take one thing away from his comments today, it would be that the team still needs to grow up in certain areas. Consistency has been the issue early in camp and this morning was no different. Coach Patterson pointed out that one unit was prepared today and one unit wasn't. Preaching preparation for early game start times, Patterson says the offense answered the bell and the defense didn't make the showing they were expected to make.

"Offense was good, defense was average" said Patterson. "But the bright spot on the defense was Derrick Kindred at strong safety, he had a great practice."

Keeping with the early theme of camp so far, the freshman continue to push the veterans for playing time and the Frogs are going to need the young guns to continue their progress if they hope to fulfill their lofty goals in 2012.

Depth at key positions continues to be the biggest question mark with the team and Patterson says he's not sure yet about the two's at cornerback.

"I don't know, we're going to scrimmage this afternoon, we'll see" said Patterson. "Both Keivon and Verrett are better than we were a year ago. For us to be what we've got to be, both Alexis and Kevin Gamble have to be better. I wish David (Jenkins) was eligible, he's had a great camp."

With so much pressure being applied to the secondary to produce results, another position is seeing heated battles take shape as well. One name that Frog fans are wondering about is David Johnson. The Sophomore DT is expected to be a leader on the defense but Coach Patterson was quick to point out that his talented defensive lineman isn't quite where he wants him just yet.

"Average" said Patterson sharply when describing Johnson's play.

After coming on strong as a RS Freshman, Johnson was expected to be a big contributor on the defense in 2012. So is he still running with the first team?

"After today's practice, he's about one play away from being the number two guy."

Patterson is known to hold guys that he feels are leaders to high standards and David Johnson is no exception. I think we'll see Johnson respond immediately to the criticism and become the player TCU needs him to be this year.

Another position that's under the microscope is offensive tackle. With young guys pushing for playing time, where does Bobby Thompson fit in? The 6'6" 305 pound RS Freshman needs to step up to help the Frogs in a major area of need.

"Right now he's a three deep" said Patterson. "Two freshmen are at two's and one freshman is playing one's so right now he's a three. So if you're asking the question about depth, he's a three."

Overall the theme seems to be in place for the remainder of camp. Some young guys are stepping up in a big way but others still need to show the staff what they're capable of. Coach Patterson summed up his thoughts on the morning practiced effort in just a few words. Was he pleased with the overall effort?

"Offensively yes, defensively no" he said. "We've got to grow up."

On a brighter note, Patterson says two young freshmen continue to catch his eye early on.

"Aviante Collins" he said. "Him and Big "V", the two tackles, I've been very excited with. Our freshmen centers both have to come along; we have a long way to go there, Joey and Chad Childs. We don't have one (#2 center) but between the two freshmen, we need to make one."

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