TCU

Kyle Hicks is shredding Baylor’s defense, proving his coach right

TCU running back Kyle Hicks scores one of his touchdowns in the second quarter. He had more than 150 yards by the third quarter.
TCU running back Kyle Hicks scores one of his touchdowns in the second quarter. He had more than 150 yards by the third quarter. rrodriguez@star-telegram.com

TCU running back Kyle Hicks is, as they say, eating. His plate is full a week after an ankle injury limited him severely in the Horned Frogs’ 27-24 double-overtime loss to Texas Tech.

He got a steady diet of 15 first-half carries and produced a healthy portion of the Horned Frogs’ 38-14 halftime lead. He scored on touchdowns of 6 and 22 yards before capping TCU’s last drive of the first half with the 3-yard score that felt like bonus points with just seven ticks left in the second, considering that the Frogs got the ball to start the second half.

You’ve got one guess what TCU did with the first series in the third. They ran it. And ran it. And ran it. Hicks’ 18-yard touchdown run was one he created for himself, cutting back against the grain of his original path, then weaving his way to the pylon to put TCU up 45-14. It was set up by his 41-yard run that had a violent crash ending in Baylor territory two plays earlier.

That’s four, count ’em, four scores for Hicks, the Arlington Martin product, not even two minutes into the second half. That’s a single-game high for Hicks, of course, and the most rushing touchdowns by a Horned Frog this year.

The junior has over 150 yards, and he and quarterback Kenny Hill are about 95 percent of the reason TCU had already eclipsed its season average for rushing yards, at halftime. The Horned Frogs came into the Baylor game averaging 166.6 yards per game on the ground, and in the first two quarters at McLane Stadium had already racked up 179.

TCU coach Gary Patterson called Hicks the team’s best player earlier in the week, and Hicks is proving his head coach right in convincing fashion.

The blueprint has been laid out. The Frogs’ advantage is a substantial hill to climb. TCU appears to be heading toward the finish line in much better shape than most would have predicted against its bitter rival.

Matthew Martinez; 817-390-7760; @MCTinez817

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