Busted BCS Busters
No. 19 TCU and No. 20 Hawai'i are two of the trendy picks to break into the BCS this season, and with TCU taking on No. 7 Texas this week and Hawai'i embarking on a 12-day road trip, they will need all their guns firing in order to lift themselves in the polls and take another step toward a BCS berth. As of Thursday, both teams are struggling with injuries - Hawai'i has lost a starting linebacker for two weeks and TCU has two guys dealing with aches that just won't go away.
Hawai'i starting linebacker Blaze Soares aggrivated his previously strained left hamstring in practice this week, taking him out of the Warriors' next two games against Louisiana Tech and UNLV. That pulled hamstring and a stinger in his left shoulder kept the 6-foot-1, 239-pound sophomore out of Hawai'i's season-opening thrashing of Northern Colorado, but he was on the travel roster before re-aggrivating the hamstring during defensive drills. Senior Brad Kalilimoku will step in at left linebacker after tallying a team-best nine tackles in the season opener.
As long as Soares is back for the final two games of the season, which will be Hawai'i's real tests against Boise State and Washington, the Warriors should have no probelm out-scoring their opponents while they wait for their starter to heal. Defense has never exactly been Hawai'i's calling card, so this one shouldn't hurt too badly.
Two Problems Linger for TCU
The status of defensive end Tommy Blake is still unknown as of Thursday. The 6-foot-3, 252-pound senior is practicing with an undiclosed illness, but the coaches have yet to decide whether or not he'll take the field Saturday against Texas. A returning first-team All-Conference selection, Blake won MVP honors in the 2006 Poinsettia Bowl after recording two sacks for a loss of 20 yards among his three tackles for a loss. He led the conference in sacks last season with seven, and was an all-around integral part of TCU's dominating defense. The Horned Frogs cannot be without him if they are going to topple the Longhorns in Austin.
Junior tail back Aaron Brown's knee injury has kept him out of practice, but he remains questionable for Saturday. Brown was the Horned Frogs' top rusher last season, logging 801 yards on the ground and averaging 5.2 yards per carry. The offense badly needs him on the field.
This wekeend's game is a huge opportunity for the Horned Frogs - they take on a Texas squad that looked extremely ordinary in last week's opener, and if TCU can manage an upset here, they might beable to buy their way into a great season culminating in a BCS bowl.