TCU had it's best signing class in the programs history. Not just because of all of the talent in the class, but because it also adressed some major needs for the roster going forward. So, in order to see how each signee fits into the Frogs system, we broke down each commit and detailed their stregth and weakenesses to see how they all fit into TCU's future plans.
Offensive tackle Lucas Niang will become Gary Patterson’s first player to hail from Connecticut during his tenure at TCU. Scout ranks the 3-star prospect as the 40th best OT in the 2016 class and as the highest rated player in his home state. Although the 6’5”, 295 pound lineman did not face much elite competition while playing for New Canaan High School, he proved himself to be a dominant force. He has great size, footwork, body control and balance. He’s also proven to be great in run blocking schemes when pulling or moving upfield to take on linebackers. But he can still improve upon his pass protection and explosion off the line.
Listed as an athlete, the TCU coaching staff will have a few options on where to put Williams - wide receiver or outside linebacker are the likely options. But that's not the most interesting part. He didn't play his senior year after transferring to Dallas Skyline (TX) from First Baptit Academy (TX). His junior season at First Baptist Academy he was team leader in receptions and sacks. On offense he recorded 494 yards and five touchdowns on 31 catches while on the other side of the ball he racked up 41 tackles, four sacks, two fumble recoveries and a forced fumble.
The Houston Touchdown Club Offenive Player of the Year in 2015, Anderson found the endzone 30 times while rushing for 2,274 yards on 263 carries - in Texas' largest classification. Features good size with speed and a dangerous cutback ability. In his three-year varsity career, he rushed for 4,951 yards and 56 rushing touchdowns while picking up 720 yards and five scores as a receiving threat out of the backfield.
The mammoth defensive lineman from Ft. Bend Elks (TX) possess a powerful base that enables him to move offensive lineman. While his ability to disengage offensive lineman, his frame allows him to clog the line of scrimmage if he can't get away. Nose guard would be ideal for him but he has shown in high school that he is more than capable of playing any of the techniques up front. He racked up 56 tackles, 10 for loss and three sacks in 10 games as a senior.
Simmons looks to have the tenacity you would expect from Gary Patterson’s defense. He is a hard hitter. He has great speed and uses that to make breaks on receivers. But, his only problem, I could see, is his field awareness. Despite being caught out of position a few times, he was still able to use his speed to break up plays. He will need to be better aware in order to make some big plays for the Frogs.
Tyree Horton is one of many JuCo recruits in this class that can fit into the rotation during his first year as a Horned Frog. Though Horton is listed as an OLB, he can really play inside or out due to his lightning-fast closing speed. He’s a hard hitter, and that’s what TCU’s defense needs.
Quickness off the ball, flexibilty and size are the biggest attributes the Dodge City Community College (KS) offenive lineman will bring to the table. Footwork after he engages a DL might be the only area that needs consistant improvement. That being said, he is a JUCO guy so he should have an immediate impact for the Frogs in 2016.
Artavious Lynn is one of those athletes that Patterson loves. He’s big, athletic and under recruited. Although he’s not as polished as some of the other members of this class, his 6’5”, 250 pound frame will give coaches a lot to work with. In high school, he primarily played tight end, but it would not be surprising if the coaches eventually put him on the defensive front.
My favorite out of the four defensive back recruits has to be Innis Gaines from Beaumont Westbrook (TX). While talking to his head coach, also my old head coach, Kevin Flanigan, he thinks the Frogs are getting a good one in Gaines. And it’s true. Gaines is an absolute steal for TCU. He has a big 6’3” frame, phenomenal speed, and field awareness beyond his years. During his senior season, he made some plays you would never expect from a 17 year old. Look for him to be a big time playmaker for the Frogs in the years to come.
Graham is a talented WR from Bastrop High School (LA). He was the no. 3 receiver recruit in Louisiana. He is a lot like Kolby Listenbee. He has the speed and footwork to break away from defenders. He has great hands and a great vertical which could make him a big time threat down the road. He needs to work on getting away from corners at the line of scrimmage, however. Once he gets that down he will be a lethal threat downfield.
The Aldine MacArthur (TX) signee features a solid skill set. He moves well for his size and his quickness off the ball allows him to pressure quarterbacks with regularity. With his height and weight combo he will be someone TCU will move around on the front. He had 21 sacks as a junior.
Already on campus, the Scout.com four-star dominated at Long Beach Community College (CA) in 2015 from his defensive end position, earning Co-Denfensive Player of the Year as well as All-National Central League honors. Boesen, who signed with Boise State out of high school, ended the season with 57 tackles, 21.5 tackles for loss and eight sacks. His biggest strength may be his “reckless abandon” type attitude - goes hardcore, all the time. He's quick enough to make plays sideline to sideline.
Vernon Scott is definitely a promising CB. His 6’3” frame makes him tough to beat. He has good awareness of the field and the speed to stay on the heels of receivers. He is a good enough athlete to compete from the get go when he steps on campus. His positional awareness made it hard for receivers to beat him in high school. It will be very interesting to see how that translates at the D1 level.
Pass rushing and pursuit are the two biggest attributes the defensive end from Mesquite Horn (TX) brings to the field. Having a laser-timed 40 under 4.7 with his size and range is a nightmare waiting to happen at the next level. Will need to add strength and weight though to be able to go up against Big 12 offensive lineman and that is likely to happen once he gets to TCU. Totaled 48 tackles and six sacks in 2015.
Hollins, from Zachary (LA) is a big body with toughness and smarts. IMO, he has a chance to jump in early and be a steady contributer. He was named Lousisiana Sports Writers Association Class 5A All-State team as a center. Though gentle off the field, once that chin strap buckles he changes into a monster. Can play center or guard at the next level.
Williams, the no. 1 JuCo receiver, is already on campus which will be a huge factor when fall comes around. At Iowa Western Community College Williams posted 648 yards and nine touchdowns on 51 receptions. Williams looks like another Josh Doctson. At 6’3”, he definitely has the size to wreak havoc on opponent’s secondaries. He runs really crisp routes. And, with his speed, he will not only be a deep threat but can also burn defenders across the middle.
KeShawn Somerville needs work. The four-star recruit is fast but he’s not good at gaining position. Subsequently, he either gets beat over the top/off the line or gets penalized for interference using his speed to catch up to the receiver. But, the interference isn’t as big a problem as one would think, it’s an effort penalty. The kid has a high motor and good work ethic. Give him a summer, and maybe a season, to work and he will be a good, if not great, corner.
Sewo Olonilua is one of the most intriguing signees in this class, in a good way. The athlete from Kingwood, Texas is an absolute monster as he measures in at 6’2’ , 212 pounds. Despite his heavy frame, he can still really move, both as a ball carrier and a tackler. He’s a guy that can play on either side of the ball, as either a linebacker or as a running back, which were both positions of need. But not matter what position he plays in college, this is a great pickup for Patterson and company.
Even though he is listed as an athlete, it looks like the Paschal (TX) product will play wide receiver at TCU. Thomas, the No. 7 athlete in Texas, earned every right to be dubbed an ‘athlete’. During his prep career, he saw time at cornerback, receiver, and QB. In the three and a half games Thomas played in 2015, he accounted for 14 total touchdowns before an injury sidelined him for the rest of 2015. The 6’1”, 186 lbs. Fort Worth native looks to have the foundation laid to be a dangerous receiver. He has the speed and hands the Frogs are looking for.
From the plains of West Texas, Brennen Wooten from Central HS (San Angelo, TX) can sling the ball, no doubt. The fourth ranked pro-style quarterback threw for 3,588 yards and 35 touchdowns his senior season. He has already enrolled at TCU this spring. But being a pro-style QB, I think it will take him some time adjusting to the system of the Frogs. He is in a good spot as an early enrollee in order to learn the offense.
Big and powerful are two words often used when talking about the offensive lineman from Manvel (TX). Played tackle for his HS team but wouldn't be surprised if he eventually moved to the intoior at TCU. He was also named an Under Armour All-American in 2015.
The 6’2” Tyler JC (TX) product looks like he will make an impact right away. The sixth ranked JuCo prospect tallied 16 touchdowns on 47 receptions in 2014. He is a lot like Taj Williams. He has great speed, crisp route running, and stick-em for hands. He and Williams will be a scary one-two punch if they both play at the Z spot.