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TCU sack totals on pace to match best seasons under Patterson

At the halfway point, TCU has 21 sacks, a pace that would mean one of its highest sack totals under coach Gary Patterson.

The Frogs finished with 45 sacks in 2002 and 43 in 2008.

Last week against Kansas, the Horned Frogs had five in a game for the second time this season. Ten players have a sack or have shared a sack.

“They’ve been letting us go, letting us have fun,” said defensive end Josh Carraway, who had sacks on back-to-back plays to back up Kansas’ last-ditch drive for a field goal. The Jayhawks had to try from 54 yards and missed, leaving the Frogs with a 24-23 victory in Lawrence.

Big 12 sack leaders

TCU, 21

Oklahoma State, 18

Texas, 15

Oklahoma, 13

Kansas, 12

K-State, 12

Carraway was TCU’s sack leader last season with nine. Saturday, he had three sacks to earn Big 12 defensive player of the week honors and take over the team lead with 4.5. Defensive tackle Aaron Curry is next with 3.5. Both are seniors.

Defensive end Tipa Galeai and defensive tackle L.J. Collier, both sophomores, each have 2.5 sacks.

“We’ve got a lot of older guys and a lot of guys that have more experience now,” Carraway said. “They know the flow of the game. They know how to get the quarterback a lot better.”

34.9 Sacks per season, on average, for TCU since 2001. The high was 45 in 2002, and the low was 25 in 2011.

Patterson, speaking to reporters during the Big 12 conference call, said it was difficult to get pressure home on Kansas because the ball was getting out of the quarterback’s hand quickly.

“Finally we were able to get a pass rush when they went into more of a dropback mode at the end of the ballgame,” he said. “One of the hard things about getting a pass rush right now, unless you’re just bringing pressure all the time, is you can’t get there. So you better substitute, because you’re kids are going to be tired. There’s some good skill players in the league, and there’s some good quarterbacks.”

A year ago, TCU finished with 32 sacks, a dropoff of eight from 2014.

“It helps us a lot,” said safety Nick Orr, who had two interceptions against Kansas. “We know it’s going to come out quick or he’s not going to have that much time to throw. D-line got good push the whole game. That’s how we’re able to play well in the back end.”

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