Since Gary Patterson took over the TCU program in 2000, he has posted a losing record just three times: 2004, 2013, and 2016. Although the Horned Frogs were bowl eligible last season, they left much to be desired by going 6-7 after a preseason top fifteen ranking. Much of that could be linked to inconsistencies and miscues on offense. When asked about quarterback Kenny Hill, Patterson had a lot to say:
“We’ve got to get him help. We’ve got to catch the ball better. I think we’re going to be better up front offensive line wise. We only lost one wide receiver. So I think all those things benefit him and then we’ve got to put him in an offense too that bends towards his strength.”
“But you have to have guys — what everybody understands is players have to step up. It’s so much — you can blame the quarterback, you can blame the coach, you can blame whatever, but at the end of the day, you have to make plays.”
Patterson brought up putting the players in an offense that best fits their skill set, and with Sonny Cumbie taking over primary play-calling duties, Patterson was asked how much the offense will change.
“How much will it change, I don’t know. we’re teaching the same thing. If anything, we’ve gone back to — it’s more back to the essence of making sure that we can run a base offense and run it really well then add things to it and not change on a game-to-game basis.”
Coach Patterson is known as a defensive minded guy, so it is no surprise that he also recognized some defensive deficiencies as a downfall to the Horned Frogs’ season.
“And we’ve got to play better defense to help him (Kenny Hill) out. We ended up, I think, statistically somewhere around second in the conference, but to be honest with you, it was very average for us. Our standards are a lot higher, football-wise, the way we want to play and how we want to do things. Because the ultimate goal is to get in the playoffs and win the Big 12 conference.”
In the previous two instances where Gary Patterson teams have had losing records, the following seasons have seen the Horned Frogs go 11-1 and 12-1. Patterson has been proven to have big turnaround seasons, we will see if 2017 is more of the same.