TCU football: Turpin could play despite injury at Iowa State

TCU’s KaVontae Turpin ranks third in the Big 12 in punt and kickoff returns and touchdown catches.
TCU’s KaVontae Turpin ranks third in the Big 12 in punt and kickoff returns and touchdown catches. Star-Telegram

Freshman receiver/returner KaVontae Turpin, who did not return to the game after getting hurt in the first quarter at Iowa State last week, is not going to miss any time.

“He’ll play,” TCU coach Gary Patterson said Monday on the Big 12 coaches conference call with reporters, asked about Turpin’s status.

“We’re 12 days out; anything can happen,” Patterson said. “We’ve had good reports back. But obviously, we’ll be very careful about everything that goes on with him.”

Turpin stayed on the ground after being tackled and fumbling. When he got up, he and two trainers walked to the locker room from the field rather than go to the TCU sideline first. Turpin walked under his own power.

Patterson did not specify the injury either Monday or after the game, but he said Saturday that the injury didn’t appear to be season-ending.

Turpin ranks third in the Big 12 in punt and kickoff returns and touchdown catches. He is the Horned Frogs’ second-leading receiver in yards and touchdowns. Against Iowa State, he had a 60-yard kickoff return, a catch for 11 yards and a carry for 6 yards when he was hurt.

517 Total punt and kick return yardage by freshman KaVontae Turpin.

Boykin evaluation

Quarterback Trevone Boykin has “let the game come to him” since the season-opener at Minnesota and is reaping the benefit, Patterson said.

425.6 Yards per game by Trevone Boykin, who ranks second in the nation in total offense.

“The first game, against Minnesota, was the only game I thought he tried to rush it, tried to do too much,” Patterson said. “I think that’s one of the things he’s tried not to do the last six ballgames. He’s just let the game come to him, went with the flow, run when he’s needed to run. And when he’s had people open, he’s waited long enough and gotten the ball to them. If he keeps doing that, I think he’ll keep being successful.”

At Minnesota, Boykin threw for a season-low 246 yards, a season-low one touchdown and was intercepted. His completion percentage of 61.9 was his second-lowest of the season. TCU’s 23 points were the fewest by the offense since Boykin became the full-time starter last year.

For the season, Boykin ranks third in the country in passing efficiency, second in touchdown passes and fourth in passing yards.

TCU Quarterback Trevone Boykin is used to Horned Frog fans cheering him on but it seems the Heisman candidate is starting to win over opposing fans too as they witness what is becoming a very special season.

Biggest challenge

Patterson called West Virginia “the biggest challenge” so far for the Horned Frogs. TCU and the Mountaineers meet on Oct. 29 in Fort Worth in a 6:30 p.m. kickoff televised by FS1.

“It’s one of those games, with all the speed and physicalness on both sides of the ball, that we have to get ready for,” he said.

Both teams get 12 days to prepare for the game. TCU is 7-0; West Virginia is 3-3 and on a three-game losing streak after playing at Oklahoma, at home against Oklahoma State and at Baylor.

“For us, the biggest thing is being able to get some guys healthy, get some guys running the way they’ve run and as physical as they’ve been,” Patterson said.

‘Really proud’ of Fuente

Patterson said he is not surprised at the success former assistant Justin Fuente is having as head coach at Memphis, which remained undefeated after a 37-24 home victory against previous No. 13 Ole Miss.

“He was going to have to have some patience, and really, he’s done a great job,” Patterson said. “Really proud of everything they’ve been able to do. I know other guys on his staff. He hired a great staff who have done a tremendous job for him.”

Patterson said Fuente is a good listener, delegates and is taking advantage of ideas about the TCU offseason program.

“But I think he’s a really good offensive mind, patient, and one of those guys that even though he was a quarterback, I think he has some toughness to him,” Patterson said. “And I think he’s brought that to Memphis.”

Carlos Mendez: 817-390-7760, @calexmendez

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