PROVO -- For BYU sophomore Charles Abouo, minutes have been hard to come by this season.

That's because the guy playing his same position is sensational freshman Tyler Haws, who entered Tuesday's game against TCU leading the team in minutes played.

But with Haws banged up during the No. 12 Cougars' 76-56 victory over the Horned Frogs, Abouo played 20 minutes, tying a season-high. He also played 20 minutes in a Jan. 2 victory over Eastern New Mexico.

Abouo entered the contest averaging 11 minutes per game. Haws, meanwhile, played a season-low 12 minutes on Tuesday — 11 of those in the first half.

Coach Dave Rose said Haws "took a shot in the forearm" during Monday's practice, then bumped his head against TCU, leaving Haws "a little lightheaded." Rose decided to hold Haws out for the rest of the game, giving Abouo a chance to play more than he usually does.

Rose likes what he's seen out of Abouo of late. Against TCU, Abouo missed all four of his shots from the floor, including two 3-pointers, but he knocked down 5 of 6 from the free throw line. He also grabbed five rebounds and added three assists. In last Saturday's victory over Utah, Abouo drilled 3 of 4 shots from the field, to finish with six points, and had three rebounds, in 10 minutes of action.

"Charles has been terrific the last month," said Rose. "He got a lot of minutes in the second half and I thought he did a good job playing on attack. He rebounded well and shot free throws well."

MORE RAVE REVIEWS FOR FREDETTE: TCU coach Jim Christian was asked his impressions of BYU guard Jimmer Fredette, who scored 26 points Tuesday.

"How much time do you got?" said Christian. "Jimmer Fredette is one of the top players in the country, period. He's a strong leader and a talented player. More importantly, BYU is an excellent team. He's got a lot of good players around him. What's not talked about nationally is how good BYU is as a team."

MORE SUBDUED ATMOSPHERE: A crowd of 11,454 attended Tuesday night's game, about half of what BYU drew last Saturday against Utah (22,644).

BYU players and coaches certainly noticed the difference.

"For the Utah game, the stands were filled before the game even started," said Fredette. "It was an unbelievable atmosphere against Utah. Tonight, I didn't feel that emotion."

"It was a different environment, a different atmosphere," said Rose, "but the same challenge."

NOTES: Rose is 10-0 all-time against TCU. The Cougars have won 11 consecutive games against the Horned Frogs, dating back to 1997 ... Jackson Emery recorded two steals against TCU and is three away from breaking the BYU single-season record of 66 set by Marty Haws in 1990 ... Lamont Morgan, Jr., tied his season-high with six points and tied a career-highs in 3-pointers (2)... Morgan has hit 9 of 12 3-pointers this season ... Jonathan Tavernari had six points Tuesday, giving him 1,386 career points. He is three points shy of Andy Toolson in all-time scoring ... Fredette has 1,252 career points, 33 away from surpassing Alan Taylor for No. 20.

e-mail: jeffc@desnews.com