LB Jason Phillips

2007 Statistics

Coach: Gary Patterson
62-25, 8 years
2007 Record: 8-5
at Texas LOST 13-34
at Air Force LOST 17-20 (OT)
SMU WON 21-7
at Wyoming LOST 21-24
at Stanford WON 38-36
at Brigham Young LOST 22-27
UNLV WON 34-10
at San Diego State WON 45-33
Houston WON 20-13

2007 Final Rankings
AP-UR, Coaches-UR, BCS-UR

2008 Outlook

Ninth-year Head Coach Gary Patterson has gone out in his first 87 games as the best of any Texas Christian head coach ever. With the team now in its third conference under Patterson's leadership (WAC, CUSA, and now MWC), this Kansas State alum and father of three was undefeated in Mountain West play their first year (2005) and 14-2 overall until last year's off results. Patterson has had two kinds of seasons since being promoted from defensive coordinator - double-digit win years (2000, '02, '03, '05 and '06) and rebuilding /restructuring/ retooling ones (2001, '04 and last year). Yes, he's due to take his horned Frogs back into the Top 25 and to possibly flirt with that BCS wildcard bid that eluded them in 2005 (and caused the rule change that now automatically includes teams ranked above 14th in those biggest of BCS bowls if that team also wins its conference, which TCU had that 11-1 season).

The basic dilemma last year was breaking in a new QB, and boy, was it worth it since then-freshman Andy Dalton set some school passing records while still adjusting to the speed of the college game. The big stink this spring was a more potent passing game since Dalton seems ready for it, but the biggest needs seem to be in the running game seeing how it fell off 30 yards per game from the prior years. The backs are stacked and ready, so if Turner and Brown can stay healthy this year, this is again a 200+ yards per game rushing team. Additionally, Dalton and oft-used backup Marcus Jackson have the feet to freeze defenders when fakes are employed. The possibilities are endless with an experienced OL, so the new hats in the WR corps just have to do what they've done so well in practice when game time rolls around.

For three years straight under DC Dick Bumpas, this defense has been in the top 15 for most statistical categories. There have been only five games in these last three years that Bumpas's guys have allowed more than 30 points, and luckily, TCU is 3-2 in those games. With eight starters back, keeping it all going is sure to happen. The linebackers are true demons, running this 4-2-5 optimally like a permanent 'dime' look for the spread offenses they'll face.

Four smaller linemen, like TCU uses, will be challenged again when Stanford and Oklahoma hit in the third and fifth week. Otherwise, the slate is workable for a win in every game, BYU is a juggernaut, as is Utah, so payback for the two straight losses to each will be the other biggest challenges. These three seem to be in a battle for supremacy atop this fledging conference, so when they face each other, the Mountain West crown is on the line. Payback will be the theme for Oklahoma - the Sooner's 17-10 opening season loss during their last matchup in 2005 kicked off Oklahoma's only year with a single-digit win total this decade (8-4). This isn't a revamping Sooner squad like then. This is one with the nation's top rated QB and a top five ranking that may not be bulletproof, but will be ready and waiting. Patterson is 5-1 against the Big 12 teams he has faced since 2005. Stanford will be stronger, too, but again beatable. If TCU can stay within 10 points of Oklahoma and lose only one more, a top 25 ranking to finish the campaign is a realistic goal.

This is the school of Davey O'Brien, LaDainian Tomlinson and a National Championship (1938). Pigskin heritage seeps out of the current 8,800+ student body, and we expect a return to prominence for the 135-year old Horned Frog team no one ever seems to see coming. If you're reading this, you're now in the loop.

Projected 2008 record: 9-3
QB - 3.5 DL - 3.5
RB - 4 LB - 4
WR - 3 DB - 3.5
OL - 3.5 ..
2007 Statistical Rankings
Total Off:
Sacks Allow:
Total Def:

Passing: Andy Dalton, 222-371-11, 2459 yds., 10 TD

Rushing: Joseph Turner, 115 att., 597 yds., 6 TD

Receiving: Donald Massey, 29 rec., 364 yds., 0 TD

Scoring: Joseph Turner, 6 TD, 36 pts.

Punting: Andy Dalton, 2 punts, 35.5 avg.

Kicking: None

Tackles: Jason Phillips, 87 tot., 58 solo

Sacks: Stephen Hodge, 8 sacks

Interceptions: Steven Coleman, 3 for 14 yds.

Kickoff Returns: Aaron Brown, 14 ret., 24.6 avg., 0 TD

Punt Returns: Daryl Washington, 2 ret., 11.5 avg., 0 TD


C Blake Schlueter


OFFENSE: Ervin Dickerson-WR, Marcus Brock-WR, Derek Moore-WR, Quinton Cunigan-TE, Matty Lindner-OG, Chris Manfredini-K
DEFENSE: Tommy Blake-DE, Chase Ortiz-DE, David Hawthorne-SLB, Brian Bonner-SS, David Roach-WS, Derek Wash-P

Anyone who thinks this offense won't rebound doesn't know the Horned Frog inner workings. Coordinator Mike Schultz likes to use a powerful running game to open up the passing lanes. Problem is, Schultz has found a serious arm in Andy Dalton, one that's already set school records for completions and attempts. Dalton's contribution as a Freshman All-American meant a few bad decisions. That's why the win total dipped. A year wiser, the offense unveiled a more vertical passing attack this spring to capitalize on Dalton's ever-growing ability to bring passing yards in bunches. Oh, and the Houston Chronicle Prep Offensive Player of the Year (2005) can run pretty well, too. That doesn't mean Marcus Jackson doesn't again see poignant insertions. Jackson is a bit faster and also can make great decisions on the fly, but Dalton just seems to be the arm Coach Patterson hasn't had in a while. Ballard was a winner, but a more mature Dalton complimented by Jackson should be able to reach the same heights and provide even more firepower once the running game gets back to where it was the prior years.

We can't say that the injuries to Aaron Brown and Joseph Turner were the reason for the running woes last year, but they definitely were both absent in the 20-17 OT loss to Air Force, and the losses to BYU, Utah and Texas (where Turner was hurt) all were amongst the season's worst team rushing totals. When healthy, junior Turner is guaranteed production - he has only lost three total yards on 139 career carries. His formidable size couples nicely with his 4.4-second speed in the 40. Brown is even faster (10.45 seconds in the 100), and the Katy-bred senior proves much more of a weapon in the flat and when lined up outside than Turner. Justin Watts did an admirable job filling in for Brown and Turner, as did natural RB Ryan Christian (who moves back to WR), so there is depth beyond the wanna-be recruits. The fastest of those guys is Thurman Thomas's cousin, Jai Cavness, who runs a 4.3-second 40 and who will assuredly get some looks after he redshirted and bulked up nicely during his orientation. The fullbacks are both solid ball carriers, but with Turner able to block in passing situations, Smith's and Shivers' numbers won't get called as much, especially if the passing game continues to increase its numbers.

The receivers are stacked three-deep and awaiting their chances. One guy who will stand out is Walt Bryant, a smart leader who becomes the focal point of this corps since he and Donald Massey are the lone seniors amongst a bevy of sophomores. Bryant has size, but Massey has the speed amongst those two. All-around athlete Massey saw action but never started, whereas Bryant started only once, yet the two finished second and third, respectively, in both catches and passing yards. Christian really grounds things even more so that the 6'1 duet of Bart Johnson and Jimmy Young can establish themselves. These two became 'go to' targets for Dalton this spring, so we expect them to challenge Massey and Bryant in the stat columns. Jeremy Kerley is an ex-QB who will get a few chances either under center or in the flat with plays that require his arm. Even with the quartet of viable sophomore backups you see listed, talk of Sam Shutt by Coach Patterson probably means the incoming frosh gets a fair shake in the crowded coffers. Senior Shea Reagan has proven to open up the deep middle; he led the team in yards per catch (17.9) for those with more than one catch. Frosch is also excellent in the pattern, but Reagan just seems to have it all.

We all know what it means to have four of your five starters along the line return. Senior Blake Schlueter is the best lineman. A two-time All-MWC selection, Schlueter is typical of the biggest Horned Frogs with his mobility and heads-up approach. Newhouse and Richmond started every game last year, as did Montgomery. An ex-DE, Giles Montgomery moves the best of any of the OLmen. Junior Marshall Newhouse is the cousin of ex-Cowboy's RB Rob Newhouse. Preston Phillips started once last year (vs. New Mexico), and the fifth-year senior knows the ropes as he steps into the starting left guard role he's coveted his entire collegiate career. Rob Clark headlines a solid second team, and lots of different combinations of old and young bigmen were paired this spring to assure even more depth as the team ages. A record-setting sophomore at the helm, a super deep set of snarlers, a well-rounded running game and a seasoned OL will come together to bring this offense to new heights for 2008.

Still, Schultz's troop lost three points per game from the prior year. Getting back to scoring more is obviously most important - when TCU scored 22 or less last year in the regular season, they went 1-5, so points equal wins.


RB Aaron Brown


Returning Starters/
Key Players
QB Andy Dalton-So (6-3, 210) Marcus Jackson-Jr (6-1, 216)
FB Chris Smith-Jr (5-11, 231) Luke Shivers-Fr (6-0, 205)
TB Aaron Brown-Sr (6-1, 196) Justin Watts-Sr (5-10, 195)
Joseph Turner-Jr (6-1, 226)
WR Jimmy Young-So (6-1, 200) Tyler Luttrell-So (6-1, 195)
Clint Renfro-So (6-0, 160)
WR Walter Bryant-Sr (6-4, 206) Jeremy Kerley-So (5-10, 185)
Curtis Clay-So (6-0, 180)
WR Bart Johnson-So (6-1, 190) Donald Massey-Sr (5-11, 172)
Ryan Christian-Jr (5-11, 188)
TE Shae Reagan-Sr (6-4, 261) Evan Frosch-So (6-4, 235)
OT Marshall Newhouse-Jr (6-3, 317) Robert Clark-Sr (6-6, 255)
OG Preston Phillips-Sr (6-6, 293) Josh Vernon-So (6-2, 295)
C Blake Schlueter-Sr (6-3, 272) Tyler Marrou-Jr (6-5, 268)
OG Giles Montgomery-Sr (6-5, 295) Josh Karlin-Jr (6-4, 280)
OT Nic Richmond-Jr (6-8, 298) Marcus Cannon-So (6-5, 319)
K Ross Evans-Fr (5-8, 173) Drew Combs-Jr (6-3, 225)



Even though TCU wasn't the conference's best defense (BYU and Utah were) after ruling the Mountain West for their first two years in the league, the six seniors and four juniors who now start have the wares to improve on what are already top 15 rankings in most statistical categories. Just to show you how competitive the MWC is getting (like the SEC), the Horned Frogs allowed 18.7 points per game to rank 10th in the nation for scoring allowed, but that was only good enough to rank third behind the two Beehive State members in this conference. Only seven other FBS teams allowed less yards per carry than TCU's 2.92. In these days of mobility and speed trumping size and strength, the 4-2-5 alignment used here matches well against spread out opponents.

If you’re going to be spread out, having the speed to recover seems to help TCU have excellent run stopping impact. The tackles fit this mold. Senior Cody Moore is in the 4.6-second range, and backup James Vess is just as fast. Freshman All-American Kelly Griffin was a DE, so he is "up to speed", and JUCO transfer John Fonua is steady enough to be an asset. The two ends who graduated will be missed. Matt Panfil is a decent talent, but he will have to really step up to fill in for the huge production now gone without Ortiz and Blake. Panfil doesn't have the ability to engage opposing linemen with as much success since he is only 230-something, but Jerry Hughes has more size for making stops. 6'6 Braylon Broughton is a monster "old school" end who can disrupt in many ways if given the chance. The DL seems to come together annually, making the sum of its parts into much more than the modest two- and three-star talent added up separately.

The LBs will again tie together the elements around them. The Q-B of the corps is Jason Phillips, an ex-hurler who realized his destiny wasn't under center but leading the D from his middle command post. Phillips became the first freshman to ever achieve all-conference, a status he has held onto each year since. Dave Campbell said he was the best LB in the Lonestar State last year. Phillips is flanked by Rob Henson, the defenses' hardest hitter. Henson is more vocal as a leader than Phillips, inferring how Henson will have a breakout season now that the senior's production has earned him the start. Henson's been both All-MWC Honorable Mention and amongst the team's top five tacklers for three years straight, but with only two linebackers being employed most of the time, his number took a while to come up. That means it's junior Daryl Washington's turn to be the monster LB who deserves to start, but has to play back up. This Irving product is a great solo tackler in open space; Washington proved he can keep up with almost any receiver during spring ball. Coach Patterson says, "I have three starting LBs."

The only uncertain position on D is at weak safety. Corderra Hunter seems to have it sewn up, but he isn't so proven that true soph Tejay Johnson can't break into the 1s. Replacing perennials Bonner and Roach won't be easy since they knew the scheme and how to coordinate with everyone else so well. The Stephen & Steven Show will do its best to compensate for the losses - All-MWC SS Hodge is unleashed early and often to (run) blitz as evidenced by his eight sacks (2nd on team and the most for any DB in the nation), and FS Coleman tied for the team lead in INTs. Johnny Fobbs looks like the next in line for a starting slot after the four listed here, and with two safeties again lost after this season, Fobbs will get his chances to prove his speed equals results. The similarities between Nick Sanders and Rafael Priest mean they know each other well - they are both in-state products who were recruited in 2005, both are now juniors, and both started every game together in '07. Priest is possibly All-American material, and since foes will probably throw away from his stat line, Sanders will get lots of balls coming his way. A total of 11 DBs have come here in the past two recruiting classes, so any holes amongst the back five can find plugs, just greener ones than the savvy upperclassmen. Too many injuries in the secondary would hurt overall defensive results.

Fifth-year coordinator Dick Bumpas has done more with less, and the mix of old and young he has layered is well positioned to keep its momentum from last year rolling into September.


DB Stephen Hodge


Returning Starters/
Key Players
DE Jerry Hughes-Jr (6-2, 248) Braylon Broughton-Fr (6-6, 250)
NT Kelly Griffin-So (6-1, 280) James Vess-Sr (6-3, 282)
DT Cody Moore-Sr (6-1, 292) John Fonua-Sr (5-10, 270)
DE Matt Panfil-Sr (6-2, 232) Wayne Daniels-So (6-2, 240)
SLB Robert Henson-Sr (6-1, 228) Daryl Washington-Jr (6-3, 228)
MLB Jason Phillips-Sr (6-1, 234) Tank Carder-Fr (6-2, 215)
CB Nick Sanders-Jr (5-10, 174) Alex Ibiloye-So (6-0, 170)
CB Rafael Priest-Jr (5-10, 163) Greg McCoy-Fr (5-10, 172)
SS Stephen Hodge-Sr (6-0, 212) Sir Demarco Bledsoe-Fr (6-2, 175)
FS Steven Coleman-Sr (6-3, 204) Johnny Fobbs-Fr (6-0, 190)
WS Corderra Hunter-Jr (6-2, 202) Tejay Johnson-So (6-1, 195)
P Anson Kelton-Fr (6-4, 260) ..




Ross Evans looks like he will be a fine replacement for Manfredini's 22-for-27 results. Big Anson Kelton is a true 11th man on coverage units, and his leg has just as much prowess. Daryl Washington had three blocked punts to tie for the national lead in that category. Aaron Brown and Donald Massey tandem for strong results in kick returns, but the new PR, Jeremy Kerley, isn't even the fastest guy in his class (that would be Jai Cavness). Punts will find new faces underneath them until the right Horned Frogs 'fly' as needed.