- Eric Martinez
TCU's last-minute drive saves their undefeated season against Baylor
The execution of the special teams left the stadium in pure shock and awe. In what might have been the game of the year, TCU executed its last 25 seconds to pure perfection. Using all of their timeouts to stop Baylor on the last drive to get the football back, TCU drove down the field rushing for each yard led by team captain and QB, Max Duggan. In what seemed to be an organized chaotic move with 22 seconds left on the clock, TCU head coach Sonny Dykes decided to run the ball to line the ball on the right hash mark for TCU kicker Griffin Kell. As the offense scrambled off the field and the special teams field goal unit sped to line up and snap the ball, it was very apparent that TCU has done this before. Not only did the snap get off perfectly, but also there was not even one lineman flinching or moving for any penalties. When asked about the execution, coach Dykes said, “That looked like chaos, but we practice it every Thursday exactly like that.” TCU escaped Waco and defeated Baylor 29-28 and kept their College Football Playoff dreams alive now moving to 11-0 with just one regular season game left before the Big 12 Conference championship in Arlington, TX.
Notable Horned Frogs players that impacted the game were on both sides of the ball. Senior QB Max Duggan ended the day going 24/35 for 327 yards and throwing 1 touchdown, Senior wide receiver Taye Barber had 5 receptions for 108 yards and several clutch 3rd down catches to move the chains. Defensively the playmakers showed up, DL Dylan Horton, LB Johnny Hodges both ended up with a total of 7 tackles and each a .5 sack and sophomore safety Bud Clark had a crucial interception.
Baylor fought until the very end and earned a lot of respect from the TCU players and fan base. Last year’s Big 12 champions took a 28-20 lead late into the 4th quarter but could not make defensive plays to claim the victory. Baylor head coach, Dave Aranda, knows how frustrating this season has been and of course Saturday’s loss, “It’s a tough locker room. I told them that I wish that we, that I, could take the pain away.” The Baylor Bears drop to 6-5 and will end their season in Austin vs. Longhorns before a possibility of a bowl game. TCU will now stay in the top four in both the rankings from the polls and of course the all-important College Football Playoffs. The Horned Frogs end their regular season next weekend vs. Iowa State Cyclones in Ft. Worth. If TCU wants to clinch the playoffs, they now truly control their own destiny with a win next weekend and capturing a Big 12 title, there is not doubt in my mind that they will have done enough to get into the 2022-2023 College Football Playoffs.