TCU 52, Kansas State 45 Instant Analysis
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1. Yeah, Trevone Boykin deserves to be right in the Heisman chase.
Can Leonard Fournette throw for 301 yards? Boykin threw two interceptions, and he might not have come up with his best day throwing the ball, but with one 69-yard touchdown dash, he came up with the one play his team had to have at the right time – and followed it up with a dart of a two-point conversion pass for a 45-42 lead late in the game. Everything continues to be set up perfectly for Boykin to be in the hunt with several big games ahead, a banged up defense that really slow anyone down, and the flair for the dramatic getting the job done late against Minnesota, Texas Tech, and now Kansas State on the road. The big question will be whether or not Boykin can be enough to carry the rocky Horned Frogs to a Big 12 title and the playoff, but he’s doing what a Heisman-caliber quarterback must to keep it all rolling.
2. How did Kansas State even stay in the game?
It’s an easy narrative to go on and on about how Bill Snyder is somehow able to crank out great team after great team despite a general lack of talent on the field and, at least this year, a whole slew of injuries. Somehow, Joe Hubener was knocked into next week in last week’s loss to Oklahoma State, but he ran for 111 yards and four touchdowns, while Charles Jones ran for two scores as the only real offensive weapons. Even with the lack of pop, it was still close in the final moments with the D unable to come up with one big stop late. Close losses might not mean much at this point for the Wildcats, but they’re still more than just competitive. The formula still works.
3. Is TCU really still in the playoff hunt with this defense?
TCU needed to reach way too deep into the bag to beat a bad Minnesota team, needed a miraculous catch to beat a Texas Tech team with no defense, and now needed to work way too much to beat a Kansas State squad without a lick of firepower and a dinged up quarterback. Next week against Iowa State should be no big deal, but with West Virginia, Oklahoma State, Oklahoma and Baylor still to face, there’s no way, no how the Horned Frogs are going unscathed with a D that doesn’t have the horses. Boykin and the offense can only do so much, especially with the big-time offenses still on the board, but for right now, considering all the concerns and all the problems on one side of the ball, just getting to 6-0 is good enough.