It is a tight race between the three teams trying to earn the second spot in the Big 12 championship game. TCU remains undefeated in league play and, barring a collapse in their final three games, appears to have one of the spots locked up. K-State, Texas, and Baylor are all tied for second place with two losses apiece. The four teams play each other this Saturday, as Texas plays TCU and K-State plays Baylor. We may have a clearer picture on Saturday night as to who has the inside track to be the team to join TCU in Arlington.
Here’s the scenario for each team and what I think may happen down the stretch.
TCU Horned Frogs
Conference Record: 6-0
Remaining Schedule: at Texas, at Baylor, Iowa State
These final three games aren’t easy for TCU. They are over a touchdown underdog at Texas this Saturday. Baylor is rising in the conference standings in the last three weeks, and Iowa State still has the top defense in the league. Could TCU win all three of their remaining games? Sure. Could they lose all three? It’s possible. I think they might have two losses by the end of the season.
Conference record: 4-2
Remaining schedule: TCU, at Kansas, Baylor
I see Texas winning two out of the three games, likely TCU and Kansas, to finish 6-3 in conference play. It wouldn’t surprise me if they run the table, but I think there’s a loss in there somewhere.
Conference Record: 4-2
Remaining schedule: K-State, at TCU, at Texas
Everyone wrote off Baylor just a few weeks ago, but they’ve won three in a row and tied for second place in the conference with a great shot of making the Big 12 championship game again. They are the only team between Texas, K-State, and Baylor to control their destiny. Win all three, and they’re in. While these games appear to be the most difficult conference games on their schedule, they have a good shot to run the table.
Kansas State Wildcats
Conference Record: 4-2
Remaining schedule: at Baylor, at West Virginia, Kansas
It’s a good bet that K-State will win two of its final three games. If they can somehow beat Baylor, they might just run the table and earn a spot to play in Arlington. For that to happen, they need Texas to lose. The game against Baylor this weekend is critical if the Wildcats want to stay in the race.
What do I think will happen? The most likely scenario is that Baylor takes care of business, knocks both K-State and Texas out of second place, and plays TCU in the Big 12 championship game. That could change if the Wildcats find a way to win on Saturday. It will be tough, as Baylor is playing great of late. There is little margin for error for this K-State team to beat Baylor. Can it be done? Yes. Is it likely? Unfortunately, no. I think Baylor gets their running game going and wins a close game, 35-30.