TCU coach Gary Patterson said the potential return to action of KaVontae Turpin this week has energized his players.
“You can tell they’re fired up,” he said Tuesday during his weekly press conference. “They were fired up for him last week. We just didn’t think he was quite ready. He was probably 90, 85, maybe 90 percent.”
Turpin has not played since Week 3 against Iowa State, when he went out in the third quarter with a knee injury.
The sophomore receiver/returner led the Big 12 in all-purpose yardage when he was hurt and had matched a career-high with seven catches in each of the first two games. He also had a punt return for a touchdown in Week 1. Last season, the 5-foot-9 speedster from Monroe, La., led the Horned Frogs in all-purpose yardage, was third in receptions and had a punt return for a touchdown.
136.4All-purpose yards on average for KaVontae Turpin in 16 games at TCU. That includes 845 yards receiving, 149 rushing, 893 on kickoff returns and 296 in punt returns.
Patterson said the team decided shortly before kickoff last week to use center Austin Schlottman, who had been out with a leg injury since the SMU game, but to hold back Turpin after a limited practice week.
“He’s one of those guys that needs to rep everything all week to really play well,” Patterson said. “And I wasn’t going to put him in in the kicking game. That’s the most violent place on the field.”
Patterson said the offense has been missing “swagger” since Turpin has been out.