TCU freshman Wyatt Harris will make his starting debut at linebacker against Kansas State on Saturday, coach Gary Patterson said.
The Frogs are turning to Harris, an Aledo product, with sophomore La’Kendrick Van Zandt sidelined with an injury. TCU hopes Van Zandt will return for the Texas game on Oct. 26.
Fellow true freshman Dee Winters has also seen action at linebacker alongside junior Garret Wallow.
Patterson said Harris will start at SAM (strong-side linebacker) against the Wildcats. Harris has been working with the first-team defense since the bye week. Wallow will remain as the middle linebacker.
“Really it’s gone very well,” Patterson said of Harris. “He’s a very knowledgeable guy. Processes fast. Good tackler.”
Harris has played in three games so far, mostly on special teams. He’s yet to record a stat.
Harris joined the Frogs as a three-star recruit out of Aledo. He had 179 tackles, six interceptions and two fumble recoveries in his high school career. His brother, Wes, is an offensive lineman on the Frogs. His other brother, Hunter, also played for the Frogs.
TCU had Wyatt (listed at 6-foot-3, 218 pounds) working as a defensive end, but moved him back to linebacker during fall camp.
In other linebacker news, sophomore Ben Wilson is expected to make his season debut at K-State. Wilson may be limited, but he’s healthy enough to return to game action.
Additional injury updates provided by Patterson include:
▪ Wide receivers Mikel Barkley and Taye Barber are expected to play this weekend. Barkley hasn’t played all year, while Barber has seen action in one game. Each should provide speed options opposite Jalen Reagor.
▪ True freshman cornerback Kee’yon Stewart is expected to return after missing the past two games. Stewart started the first three games with Julius Lewis sidelined.
TCU and K-State are scheduled to kick off at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday in Manhattan, Kansas.