TCU is in the middle of fall camp and there are still plenty of snaps up for grabs.
The Frogs are in the midst of what coach Gary Patterson dubbed “the evaluation period.”
As Patterson put it, “There’s not anybody right now that doesn’t have a chance to play on defense.”
Co-offensive coordinators Sonny Cumbie and Curtis Luper would probably echo those thoughts on the offensive side.
Here’s a look at position battles to watch with less than three weeks until the season opener against Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Aug. 31:
Patterson mentioned sophomore Coy McMillon as someone who is separating himself in this position battle.
McMillon, who played in every game last season but didn’t start, is listed at 6-foot-4, 280 pounds, so he has the desired size to handle more head-up nose tackles in today’s game.
Others in the mix include Austin Myers, who is also getting reps at right guard, redshirt freshman Esteban Avila and junior Kellton Hollins.
In the practice open to reporters earlier this month, sophomore Carter Ware took the first snaps with the first-team at tight end. Ware started at tight end in the Cheez-It Bowl to end last season.
But this is a deep position.
Patterson had promising things to say about Artayvious Lynn, the 6-foot-6 junior, and Pro Wells, the 6-foot-4 sophomore, following Saturday’s practice.
TCU doesn’t use the tight end much in the passing game. Lynn finished with four catches for 30 yards, and Wells had two catches for 12 yards last season. Another tight end, Cole Novak, finished with one catch for 6 yards.
But that could change this year and it’ll be interesting if a tight end emerges as a viable receiving threat for the Frogs.
Junior Garret Wallow is expected to be the strong-side linebacker, but middle linebacker is up for grabs.
Patterson had good things to say about senior Montrel Wilson early in camp, although his availability is in question. Wilson missed practices last week, Patterson said, and his status is unknown for now.
With that, Patterson raved about the development of true freshman Dee Winters on Saturday. Winters is in the mix to see meaningful snaps right away. Redshirt freshman DeMauryon Holmes was listed as Wilson’s backup at middle linebacker following spring practices, as well.
TCU has to feel good about its starting cornerbacks in Jeff Gladney and Julius Lewis, but depth is an issue after sophomore Noah Daniels sustained a season-ending injury.
Patterson expects JUCO transfer Tony Wallace to be available soon, and likes what he’s seen from true freshmen Kee’yon Stewart and Donavann Collins. Another option could be moving senior Keenan Reed to cornerback, although Reed is a valuable player at free safety.