Notes and observations from TCU's early morning practice today ....
*One impressive drill to watch came on kickoff returns when Ryan Christian rotated with redshirt freshman cornerback Greg McCoy from Dallas Woodrow Wilson and sophomore wide receiver Jeremy Kerley from Hutto. All three had excellent bursts upfield, and give TCU three great options at the position. McCoy is reportedly the fastest guy on the team, having been clocked with a 4.23-40. TCU coach Gary Patterson said the team plans to have a kicking scrimmage next but said the trio has "a lot of potential." Christian was also excited. "McCoy is ridiculous fast,'' he said. "Kerley's got great vision. He's quick and fast. Everybody's different in their own way. I'm sure they'll rotate us out to give (some teams) different looks.''
*Gary Patterson said he's pleased with his starting defensive ends, but said the No.2s have got to keep progressing and mature. He also said he feels good about two safety positions but needs improvement from another. "I'd tell you which one it is but then I'd be telling New Mexico,'' he said, referring to TCU's season-opening opponent.
*The offensive line looked good during blocking drills, and seemed to have a healthy attitude to them. "We only lost one guy,'' Patterson said. "We knew if we stayed healthy we were going to be better than we were a year ago. And I think we are." Senior center Blake Schlueter said the improvements came during the spring, when veterans decided they didn't want a repeat of last season. Veterans emphasized working harder, finishing drills and creating the attitude that an offensive line should have. Younger linemen have bought into it, he added. "The older guys we demanded it of everybody,'' Schlueter said. "Then we have some great younger guys who are willing to work, and do what it takes also to be a great offensive line and to win. Everybody's taking it in stride. We've got in our heads that we're going to work hard and that's what we've been doing."
*Freshman running back Edward Wesley, an Irving MacArthur graduate, had some impressive runs, including a touchdown down the far side against the No.1 defense. Patterson tapped the brakes on any excessive praise, saying that score came due to busted coverage by the defense.
*Just call it the "TCU rule" - The Horned Frogs had three of eight conference games last year on Thursday nights. This year, the Mountain West Conference has instituted a rule that teams can't have more than two conference games on Thursdays. Of those two, one must be home, and another away.
*When asked what he was looking for from this afternoon's scrimmage, Patterson replied, "Same. Get better."
* Other observations - Wide receiver Austin Galifaro caught a nice pass under pressure. ...Former Arlington Martin player Kris Gardner, who's listed at linebacker, took snaps at running back at one point. He came to TCU as a tight end. ... Best hit may have come from Robert Henson, who forced a fumble on one play.