- Carter Strickland, Reporter, HornsNation
Each week, with the help of ESPN Stats and Info, HornsNation takes a look inside some of the stats that might shape the outcome of Texas’ next game. This week the focus is on TCU, a team that has struggled losing four of its last six.
1. 23 and 67
TCU has a young quarterback. Young quarterbacks are prone to mistakes when pressure is applied. In fact, Trevone Boykin has thrown eight interceptions since he became the starter six games ago. The only team he managed to protect the ball against was Baylor and that is not so odd given that the Bears, prior to their win over Kansas State, had the worst defense in FBS.
For Texas, the key to making sure Boykin makes a few mistakes is getting pressure upfield. The Longhorns have done a pretty decent job of that this season. They have 23 sacks and 67 quarterback hurries. Those numbers have dipped since the loss of Jackson Jeffcoat. Texas only has nine sacks in the last four games. But the Longhorns had 12 quarterback hurries against Iowa State. If Texas is able to apply that type of pressure to Boykin, the secondary should have a few chances for some interceptions.
Texas has allowed just 10 points off turnovers. That puts the Longhorns first in FBS. (Kansas State had been first in that stat, as well as No. 1 overall, prior to the collapse against Baylor.) Now while no one around Texas is predicting turnovers against TCU, the Horned Frogs are one of the more opportunistic teams in the country. They have 26 turnovers gained which puts them 14th nationally. Texas quarterback David Ash has not thrown an interception since he had two against Kansas. He only has seven in his 10 starts this season.
TCU started 4-0 with Casey Pachall under center. But the quarterback ran into off the field problems and is no longer playing. Without Pachall, TCU has gone 2-4. That record over six games is slightly deceiving because of who the Horned Frogs have played. Three of the six opponents were ranked. In addition, the offensive production, at least in terms of yardage, has not suffered since Pachall went out. TCU has averaged 14 more yards per game without him. But they have nine interceptions as opposed to one when Pachall was under center.