2009 TCU Football: The Running Game Will Put TCU Over the Top

Johnny MonroeContributor IAugust 24, 2009

NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 27:  Tailback Joseph Turner #24 of the TCU Horned Frogs during play against the Oklahoma Sooners at Memorial Stadium on September 27, 2008 in Norman, Oklahoma.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

If there was ever a more critical component to a team’s success, the running game for TCU this season will be what gets them over the hump on the camel’s back.

Enough is enough; TCU is looking to open some eyes and finally break into the BCS Bowl discussion.

Last season, TCU ranked 12th in the nation in rushing. They amassed more than 220 yards per game. Junior QB Andy Dalton is back under center and looking to take TCU to the top of the college football horizon.

Dalton alone scored eight rushing touchdowns last season. He’s ranked second all-time for career passing yards at TCU with 4,701. The Horned Frogs have strived in ball control and allowing its defense to do its thing and to release the hounds.

The run game was a juggernaut by committee basis in 2008. Senior Ryan Christian and senior Joseph Turner are back to lead the Frogs. Redshirt freshman Ed Wesley was so remarkable in their absence in the spring that the committee will likely be three-headed this fall.

Turner has been TCU's most productive running back the last two seasons. He led the team with 577 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns in 2008. The loss of Aaron Brown is monumental but Joseph should play an even bigger role in 2009.

However, Turner has yet to break 600 yards in a single season. Despite the loss of offensive coordinator Mike Schultz, head coach Gary Patterson said the offense will stay the same.

Look for them to roll out the Wild Frogs formation quite a bit this season going forward. They also will remain to bring the smash mouth football to any and every opponent they face.
Can they consistently run thru and around teams like Clemson, who boast a stellar D line and run-stuffing linebacker? The Horned Frogs definitely have enough depth to carry them through the season undefeated barring any injuries.

If TCU can put up the same kind of numbers on the ground per game like they did last season, they’ll be in contention for the BCS National Title.