Defense readies for difficult test against Horned Frogs
- Sep. 14, 2012
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Looking ahead to conference play, Kansas defensive coordinator Dave Campo told his players in practice this week that even though they are preparing for a tough Texas Christian team, this is what they play the game of football.
TCU played one game this season, but caught everyone’s attention when they shutout Grambling State, 56-0. The 20th ranked Horned Frogs bring the Jayhawks a new challenge for this Saturday as Kansas wraps up their three-game home stand.
“They’re a good, fast football team,” Campo said. “They’ve got guys that can make things happen on offense. This is going to be a challenge and there is no question about it. I’m excited to be in it and play against good football teams.”
TCU completed all 17 passes last week. Even when they had two different quarterbacks in the game, they still managed to compile a perfect passing game. The tough part is Casey Pachall only threw nine passes and the Jayhawks don’t have much film to study off of when trying to evaluate him.
But Campo spent last season coaching professional football with the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys home stadium is only a 30-minute drive to where TCU plays their home games. Since Campo is familiar with college athletes in the Dallas and Fort Worth area, he has some background knowledge on Pachall.
“Pachall I think is one of the higher rated players they have recruited over the years,” Campo said. “That was one of the things that excited them the most when I was down there in the Dallas area. He can throw the football. He’s a good athlete. He’s a competitor.”
Senior defensive end Josh Williams does not remember a time, high school or college, where he has had to get ready for a team that came off with a perfect passing game. With the eight turnovers the defense has constructed in two weeks, Kansas looks to do the same thing against TCU to help increase their season total.
“As a defensive line, we have to get pressure on their quarterback,” Williams said. “We have to keep working on the small things and keeping our focus. The biggest thing I would say is keeping that focus. We’ve got to be fundamentally sound in what we do and we’ve got to execute.”
If Kansas can execute in giving Pachall some trouble and force him to get rid of the ball sooner, it gives their defensive backs another opportunity to have an impressive day on the field.
However, TCU’s offense is built to where all of their receivers can come through for Pachall and catch a quick pass.
“The quarterback is playing at a high level,” said defensive backs coach Clint Bowen. “They have a good receiving crew and they have some weapons. It’s a nice offense. TCU has done a good job of putting together that package.”
TCU’s depth is something that Kansas has taken notice of during preparation. The defense has practiced making substitutions quickly when they go up against TCU and its high-tempo offense.
The Jayhawks know first hand that the Horned Frogs will come to play with an elite offense. TCU is ready for its first conference game as a member of the Big 12.
Kansas is also excited for this test. They moved forward from last week’s disappointing loss and want to make the most out of the first conference game.
“I look at it as a big opportunity for us to go out and show where we are at as a team,” Williams said. “I think it’s just a big game for us to show that we’ve improved and that we are Kansas and we are here to play football too.”