Talented freshmen for TCU men improving the offense

12/20/2013 5:14 PM

12/20/2013 5:16 PM

TCU coach Trent Johnson brushed away preseason questions about scoring. And so far the Horned Frogs have shown why.

Despite missing top scorer Amric Fields for much of the season, along with a slew of other experienced scorers because of injury, TCU is averaging nearly 70 points a game, 15 points more than a year ago.

Much of Johnson’s confidence for the offense stemmed from the talented group of freshmen he had recruited. And so far, they’ve lived up to advance billing.

In Thursday’s rout of Grambling State, three freshmen starters combined for 37 points on 12 of 21 shooting.

Center Karviar Shepherd and guard Michael Williams each had career highs with 12 and 14 points, respectively, and Brandon Parrish added 11.

TCU’s 98 points is the most for the Frogs since March 2012, an overtime loss against San Diego State. Last season, TCU scored 70 or more points three times, including twice in nonconference. The Frogs have scored at least 70 six times already this season.

“They played hard,” Johnson said Thursday. “We had better energy and got off to a good start. It was nice and long overdue. Regardless of who your opponent is, that’s something that should happen for us all the time.”

Since starting 0-2, the Frogs are 7-1 and have won three consecutive games.

Tulsa comes to Daniel-Meyer Coliseum for an 11 a.m. rematch Saturday. The Frogs beat Tulsa by seven on Nov. 29 in Alaska.

After an eight-day break, TCU returns against Texas Southern on Dec. 29 before opening Big 12 play against West Virginia on Jan. 4.

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