Every year, there's lots of turnover and change for every college program. What do the Big 12 teams need to do before next fall? Let's continue our look with the Frogs here in Fort Worth.
1. See what Casey Pachall has to offer and make a decision. Pachall is back with the team, but we won't get a real feel for how good or bad he is until the spring when the team can begin practicing as a unit with coaches. In the meantime, this job is Trevone Boykin's to lose. The spring will be a showcase for Pachall, and we'll have a good idea of whether TCU is a real Big 12 title contender. I don't believe in the Frogs unless Boykin looks like a new man in 2013, but if Pachall returns to his 2011 and early 2012 form, TCU is legitimate.
2. Don't pay attention to stuff off the practice field. In that same vein, there's going to be some unprecedented preseason hype around this team. Pachall or not, this young team is likely to be one of the Big 12 favorites by the media at large around the league and some nationally. It showed promise in last year's 7-6 team, but the surest way to not win the Big 12 title is to believe you can win it without working for it. Read enough news clippings or believe all the nice things people say on campus, and that poisonous mindset might seep in.
3. Grow up. In that same vein, most of those predictions will be predicated upon the presupposition that next year's team will do a whole lot of improving this offseason. This team doesn't lose very much from the 2012 version. Six players on offense and a rousing nine (from arguably the Big 12's best defense) will return in 2013. This team will know its identity (balanced offense with big-play potential and a stingy defense with strengths in perfect places in the Big 12 -- pass rush and the secondary) and know what it wants to do next year. Teams across the league will spend the entire offseason trying to figure out how to beat guys like Devonte Fields and Jason Verrett and shut down Brandon Carter. Those guys have to get better at what they do best and add new facets to their games by next fall that makes life even harder for opponents.
More offseason to-do lists: