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Player to Watch: Ray Lima

The unsung hero from last year is still performing at a high level.

NCAA Football: Iowa State at Baylor Andrew Dieb-USA TODAY Sports

If you were a casual fan who watched the game, but didn’t really pay attention and looked at the stats afterwards, Ray Lima wouldn’t stand out to you. If I were to pick the player who I would think have the best stats against TCU, it would be one of the usuals. David Montgomery, Hakeem Butler, Mike Rose, or Brian Peavy. These are all great players, but I don’t think any of them will have the same impact on the game as Ray Lima.

Last year, Lima arguably had his best game agaisnt TCU. He put endless pressure on Kenny Hill by taking three defenders on every play, which opened up the gaps for the stars on the defensive side of the ball. This strategy worked extremely well, as the TCU offense scored 0 points thanks to Ray Lima.

Lima, the 302 lb nose guard, did that all year last year. He has continued to do that this season, and is one reason why the defense has looked elite in two of their three games so far.

The Horned Frogs graduated Kenny Hill and Kyle Hicks from the team, but return Darius Anderson and Kevontae Turpin. Their offense looks worse compared to last year, scoring just 28 points against Ohio State and only 16 against Texas.

Against the Longhorns, they drove inside their 30 six times. They only scored once in those chances. Much like the game against the Cyclones last year, when TCU drove deep several times, the Iowa State defense prevailed. A lot of that was thanks to Ray Lima for the constant pressure he put on the offensive line and quarterback.

It is a sure thing that TCU will have a couple really good scoring chanced against Iowa State. Much like last year, Lima will need to put pressure on Shawn Anderson to force stops and turnovers. I believe he will do that.

Prediction 1 Tackle, .5 TFL, .5 Sack, and a Cyclone win