New coach Sonny Dykes says TCU Horned Frogs could play 3 QBs in first game

FORT WORTH, Texas — Max Duggan has started 29 games as TCU quarterback, and Chandler Morris had 531 yards of offense in his only full game last fall. The Horned Frogs’ new coach Sonny Dykes still hasn’t said which of them will take the first snap of Friday night’s season opener in Colorado.

TCU’s initial depth chart lists Duggan or Morris as the No. 1 quarterback.

“I think we’re in a good place,” Dykes said Monday. “Obviously Max Duggan has an important resume. He’s played a lot of snaps over the last three years here at TCU, played very well. … Chandler is the same. You look at some of the games he played in last year, he played exceptionally. So they both have experience and both made it.”

Dykes expects both Duggan and Morris to play in the opener, as well as Sam Jackson, the redshirt freshman who had a 77-yard completion against Taye Barber on his only pass attempt last season. The coach said he doesn’t think it matters who starts.

“It’s a fun group. I like the guys a lot,” said Dykes. “Sam certainly brings a different element to the space. … I would expect all three to play and I expect all three to play well.”

Duggan, the Iowa Gatorade Player of the Year and a four-star recruit before joining TCU, has passed for 5,920 yards with 41 touchdowns and 20 interceptions in 32 total games for the Horned Frogs. The senior also has 1,433 yards and 19 more points.

After Duggan played several games with a broken foot bone last season, Morris got his first start in a 30-28 win over Big 12 champion Baylor in TCU’s first game after a mutual agreement between Gary Patterson and the school to separate. Morris threw for 461 yards, ran for 70 yards and even caught a pass. His 531 total yards was the second-highest in school history, but he was injured in the next game.

Morris, the former Oklahoma transfer, is still listed as a redshirt freshman after completing 50 of 76 passes for 717 yards and three touchdowns in his four games last season. He had a TD run for the Sooners in their Big 12 championship game win over Iowa State in 2020.

Senior offensive lineman Steve Avila, a team captain, said the Frogs are confident about which quarterback is playing.

“The only thing we really know is that the voice changes,” Avila said.

“They all run offense in their own way,” Barber said. “They all bring different things with them, and I think they’re all positive.”