Week 2 of the college football season kicks off in Dallas at Southern Methodist University. There is only one game on the Friday night college football slate, with the TCU Horned Frogs and SMU Mustangs meeting for their annual meeting. TCU have won six straight games over SMU, with their latest resulting in a 56-36 victory last September. It’s been a lopsided rivalry which isn’t much of a rivalry when one school has dominated. Maybe if some of these games were close at least it’d make for an interesting story. However, TCU have firmly left their mark on the SMU football program.
The Mustangs have made strides in recent years, but it was never enough to keep up with the Horned Frogs. Sonny Dykes was signed on as the new head coach of the SMU Mustangs and I can’t say that I’m ecstatic about that hire. There isn’t as much talent at SMU as in previous years, but that’s besides the point.
I don’t believe he’s going to have this team in a good position in three or four years down the road. He didn’t do much at Cal, ultimately leading to getting fired and searching for a new job. It was a sorry defense that got Dykes the hook and I don’t expect much to change at SMU when he gets his own guys in. The offense will be fine, but the Mustangs are likely to face the same problems Dykes had at Cal.
The Mustangs opened the year with a putrid effort against the North Texas Mean Green. They got down 34-0 and only got on the board in the 4th inning when the game was well out of hand. North Texas just sat on the lead and played prevent defense.
That was the only way SMU could move the ball. Third-year quarterback, Ben Hicks, did not look up to the challenge. No Courtland Sutton lining up at wide receiver will do that to a quarterback. Meanwhile, TCU had a creampuff tune-up game against Southern University. Shawn Robinson put on a dominant performance at quarterback. The dual-threat QB is destined for a big career with the Horned Frogs and we got a glimpse of it last week. He’ll look for more of the same in the battle of the Iron Skillet on Friday night. Get our free TCU vs. SMU pick and rest of the writeup below.
TCU Horned Frogs vs. SMU Mustangs Betting Odds:
vs. SMU +21.5(+105)
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TCU vs. SMU Pick:
It wasn’t much of a challenge for TCU last week, as they flew past Southern for a 55-7 win. The Horned Frogs were never in danger of getting upset. It wasn’t the stingiest of tests for Shawn Robinson, but he showcased why TCU is so confident in him. He threw 3 touchdowns on 17-of-24 passing and ran for 45 yards on just 2 attempts with 2 touchdowns on the ground. The SMU defense is likely to run into issues trying to defend Robinson through the air and ground.
SMU did not look like they were ready to take on North Texas last week, who mind you, have a good offense for what they are, but the Mean Green made it look easy. Mason Fine passed for 444 yards and 3 touchdowns to lead them to a 46-23 win. Jalen Guyton and Rico Bussey both went for over 90 yards receiving.
The defense was expected to have difficulties against North Texas. They have one of the better offenses in college football that no one know about. However, we expected some life from the Mustangs’ offense. Hicks looked frustrated all night long, as he struggled to get it going. He passed for 252 yards on 12-of-24 passing with 2 touchdowns and 1 interception. All of his positive results came in the 4th quarter. He couldn’t orchestrate even a field goal against the North Texas defense through 3 quarters of play. The Mean Green were sitting on a comfortable lead by this point, so there wasn’t much incentive to play hardnosed defense.
Look for Hicks and company to struggle against the TCU D on Friday night. Ben Banogu who chose to come back to college for his senior season is likely to be a force against an offensive line of SMU that is going to struggle. The Mustangs ranked 122nd in the nation with 476.7 yards allowed per game a season ago. They didn’t show that anything changed in the opener against North Texas.
With Sonny Dykes the new head coach, don’t expect the defense to find a secret formula moving forward. Even with his emphasis on offense, I don’t see it working too well against a strong TCU defensive unit. TCU has Ohio State on deck next week, which could make this a look ahead spot. The Horned Frogs might be looking forward to next week, but I don’t expect it to matter against the Mustangs. I like about a 45-13 win for TCU as they capture the Iron Skillet yet again in 2018.