Southern Methodist is next for the rising Horned Frogs (3-0), up four spots to No. 11 after their 14-10 win at Clemson (2-2) on Saturday.
Patterson is wary of the Mustangs, but his bigger fight may come during the week with blunting Bowl Championship Series talk with the TCU closing in on the Top 10.
The Horned Frogs will likely have to stay perfect to reach the BCS. One loss, as Mountain West Conference rivals BYU and Utah found out last week, and the buzz is just about over.
After SMU, TCU starts league play at Air Force on Oct. 10. There's a trip to BYU two weeks after that and a home game with Utah, which ended the Horned Frogs conference title hopes in 2008, on Nov. 14.