Baylor's close win against Texas Tech won't help its CFP cause
The College Football Playoff committee already didn’t hold Baylor in the highest regard compared to some of the other teams in the top seven of the rankings and the Bears’ 48-46 win against Texas Tech isn’t going to do them any favors.
Several times throughout the release of the playoff rankings, committee chairman Jeff Long has noted that Baylor’s schedule was not comparable to that of, say, No. 5 TCU. That’s why Baylor has failed to leapfrog TCU in the rankings despite a win against the Horned Frogs earlier in the season.
The one thing that could have pushed the Bears over the TCU hump was impressive wins to end their schedule. However, they squandered a 42-17 third-quarter lead against Texas Tech and gave up the potential tying touchdown with 1:42 remaining. Had Tech been able to convert its two-point try, the game likely would have gone to overtime.
That’s a stark contrast to what TCU did to the Red Raiders on Oct. 25 — an 82-27 Horned Frog victory — and a contrast to what the Horned Frogs were able to do against a tough Texas defense on Thursday (a 48-10 win). Moreover, Texas is a bowl team; Texas Tech came into Saturday’s game with just two conference wins against the two teams worse than it. All but one of the Red Raiders' other conference losses this season were by double digits.
TCU knows all too well how struggling against a bad opponent can hurt in the playoff rankings. When it beat Kansas by just four points a couple weeks ago, it dropped out of the top four and has yet to get back in.
Now, this doesn’t mean Baylor won’t move up in the standings this week, especially with Mississippi State’s loss. But it’s made jumping TCU that much more difficult, especially when the Bears needed to impress a committee that had yet to be impressed by their resume so far.
Baylor probably will have to have a superior effort against Kansas State to even get close to TCU and that could be difficult if quarterback Bryce Petty isn’t able to play. Petty was knocked out of Saturday’s game with a mild concussion. Backup Seth Russell came in and performed well, but the Bears need Petty in the lineup if they're going to beat the Wildcats and make their best pitch for a spot in the playoff.
For more Baylor news, visit SicEmSports.com.
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Graham Watson is the editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at email@example.com or follow her on Twitter! Follow @YahooDrSaturday
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