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Sonny Dykes: 'For Sure' I Believe TCU Belongs in CFP Despite Loss vs. Kansas State

Adam WellsDecember 3, 2022

FORT WORTH, TX - NOVEMBER 26: Head coach Sonny Dykes of the TCU Horned Frogs watches from the sidelines as TCU takes on the Iowa State Cyclones during the first half at Amon G. Carter Stadium on November 26, 2022 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images)
Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

After missing a chance to win the Big 12 championship and all but assure itself a spot in the College Football Playoff with a 31-28 overtime loss to Kansas State on Saturday, TCU finds itself at the mercy of the selection committee to make the Top Four when the final rankings are announced.

Speaking to reporters following his team's defeat, head coach Sonny Dykes was asked if the Horned Frogs deserve to be in the playoff.

"For sure I do," he responded.

Kansas State head coach Chris Klieman agreed with Dykes' assessment of TCU's playoff chances.

Max Olson @max_olson

Kansas State coach Chris Klieman: “TCU should be in the CFP. They’re one of the best four teams.”

TCU entered Saturday's conference title game with a 12-0 record and ranked No. 3 in the College Football Playoff standings.

The playoff rankings were already in for a shake-up after Friday when No. 4 USC got blown out by Utah 47-24 in the Pac-12 Championship Game. The Trojans' defeat certainly helps TCU because it gives the selection committee two spots it has to think about.

Georgia and Michigan are the top two teams in the rankings and will play their conference title games later in the day.

The top two teams on the outside of the playoff in the most recent rankings were Ohio State at No. 5 and Alabama at No. 6.

USA Today's Dan Wolken laid out the reasons why he is skeptical that a two-loss Alabama team would jump TCU when the final rankings are released:

Dan Wolken @DanWolken

Guys, Alabama isn’t going to jump TCU. Better wins and if this holds, a loss to a top-10 team that it already beat. That anyone is even talking about a different outcome is bizarre.

TCU's regular-season schedule does work to its advantage if there is a debate. It entered Saturday with the best strength of record in the country, per ESPN.com. Its record includes a previous win over Kansas State on Oct. 22 and No. 20 Texas.

If you want to find a way for the selection committee to knock TCU, its schedule doesn't look as impressive as it once did.

The Horned Frogs' victories over Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Kansas looked good at the time when those teams were all ranked in the Top 20 of the Associated Press poll, but they finished the season with a combined 19-17 record.

Of course, the same argument can be made for Alabama. The Crimson Tide also hold a victory over Texas, but its only other win against a team in the current playoff Top 25 was over No. 24 Mississippi State.

Dykes is certainly biased in campaigning for his own team, but it's hard to argue any of the teams that could potentially be in the mix have a strong enough resume to leapfrog TCU.

The final College Football Playoff rankings will be unveiled Sunday at 12 p.m. ET on ESPN.