Best Case Scenario: TCU has the best chance to go 12-0 this year from any team in the Mountain West. Their offense finally catches up to their normally stacked defense with a mature quarterback in Andy Dalton and do everything Jeremy Kerley and then senior wide out Jimmy Young.
The main hurdles would be to avoid the letdowns they had in 2008; those happened to be in a 13-10 close win over Colorado State, and then the 13-10 loss against Utah where the Horned Frogs failed to score a point after the first quarter and missed three field goals.
Their two main non-conference games are on the road at Clemson and Virginia are both very winnable, but should not be overlooked. The BYU and Utah game will be tough especially with the BYU game that is at LaVell Edwards a place they have not lost since Utah in 2005. However last year TCU manhandled the Cougars and the TCU defense looks just as strong and with BYU replacing four starters from the offensive line.
The Utah game is interested because TCU has not beaten Utah since 2005, and expect the same type of preparedness that TCU did last year towards BYU with their helmets on tackling dummies throughout the year.
Worst Case Scenario:A 9-3 record is pretty nice when this is considered worst case. A factor to consider in those three potential loses – to Clemson, BYU, and Utah – is the offense not finding a way to get it done. The offense has historically been a step behind the defense and that could be the case again.
The only reason to expect TCU to lose some games is because they are not able to create turnovers on defense, or the offense sputters which has been a problem in the past, or if their field kicker blows a couple of easy field goals. Also, the strong safety position needs to be considered a weakness because the depth is not there and there have all ready been injuries during camp. The pass defense could be vulnerable this upcoming season.
Also, the defense only returns four starters, and there is a chance these players do not step it up and could cause the typical stellar Gary Patteson defense to take a step back in 2009.
Not a Chance None
50/50 @Virginia, @Clemson, @Air Force, @BYU, Utah
Lock it up Texas State, SMU, Colorado State, San Diego State, @Wyoming, New Mexico