TCU football has been playing with fire throughout the 2022 season. The Horned Frogs are 11-0 and one of four undefeated teams in the country, but eight of their wins have come by 10 points or less. Their close calls have divided fans, with some believing they are true contenders and others believing they are fool’s gold.

Saturday’s game against Baylor was the epitome of TCU’s season so far. The Horned Frogs trailed by eight in the fourth quarter, and saw their hopes fading as the clock wound down. However, they managed to kick a game-winning field goal as time expired to escape with a 29-28 road victory.

TCU may have looked incredibly shaky on Saturday, as it has at several points this season, but it survived. Even still, some are calling for the Horned Frogs to drop in the rankings due to their lack of dominance. While they may not be the most dominant team in the country, they still deserve a ton of respect for overcoming so much adversity.

With that said, here is why TCU should not fall in the College Football Playoff rankings following Saturday’s close call.

2. Other teams had bad scares as well

Saturday was not a good day for the top teams in college football. It wasn’t just TCU that struggled, but Georgia, Ohio State and Michigan as well. All three teams struggled against inferior opponents, just like TCU did.

Georgia’s 16-6 win over Kentucky was the least egregious, but the Bulldogs still looked very flat on offense. Ohio State had trouble in its 43-30 win over Maryland, as the two teams went blow-for-blow and a last-second scoop and score made the game look more lopsided than it was. Michigan had by far the most concerning game of the three, needing a last-second field goal and some questionable calls to beat Illinois 19-17 at home.

And this example just includes the top-four teams. Fifth-ranked Tennessee wasn’t as lucky, as the Volunteers lost to unranked South Carolina 63-38. The Volunteers were the next team up to pass the Horned Frogs, but with this loss, that won’t be happening any time soon.

The only top team with a truly good performance was No. 7 USC, which beat No. 16 UCLA in a thriller. Even then, TCU doesn’t have a loss and boasts a better set of wins than USC. It seems unlikely the rankings committee would move USC above TCU, all things considered.

1. TCU just keeps on winning

Ugly as it may be, the Horned Frogs continue to get the job done each week. They are one of just four undefeated teams left in the country, and the other three are already ahead of them. As long as they keep winning, they’ll stay near the top.

In fact, there is a team very similar to this year’s TCU: 2014 Florida State. The Seminoles constantly found themselves trailing and all their wins came ugly, but their undefeated record was enough to get them into the College Football Playoff. Ironically, TCU missed the playoff in part due to Florida State finishing undefeated.

If history repeats itself, then TCU football might be in Florida State’s shoes this time around. The selection committee has shown that being undefeated matters, no matter how a team gets there. The Horned Frogs have overcome every obstacle this season, and they’ll be in the top-four as long as they keep it up.