College Sports: Will a Big 12 team make the College Football Playoff?

Kevin Sherrington, sports columnist for and The Dallas Morning News, answered questions about the Cowboys, Rangers, Mavericks and local college sports during a live chat recently. Here are some highlights.

Question: Gut feeling: Will a Big 12 team make the College Football Playoff?

Sherrington: Well, nothing’s for certain when you go through a college season, as Lincoln Riley will tell you after that Iowa State debacle. But I think TCU can make it. It’ll be tough, because they’ll have to beat Oklahoma in Norman, and if they do that, then they’ll probably have to beat Oklahoma State again. If they do that, and they’re undefeated, there’s no way the committee keeps them out. The last time TCU came so close, the committee complained about their schedule. Well, this one included a non-conference road win over Arkansas and road wins over Oklahoma State and OU, if that scenario plays out. Pretty good recommendation when you beat the best teams in your league at their places.

Question: Who will still have their job at the end of the season: Kevin Sumlin, Kliff Kingsbury or both?

Sherrington: Well, this season has been all over the map for both. Kingsbury got off to a great start, even cracking the Top 25, before going south fast. Sumlin started off great for a half, then watched his stock go through the floor in the second half against UCLA. Since then, Texas A&M has improved steadily. Even has a shot at 8 or 9 wins in the regular season. I think it’ll come down to the game against LSU in Baton Rouge, which looks tougher now than it did a month ago. As I’ve written before, the difference between the two is that there are big hitters at Tech who like Kliff personally, because he played there. Kevin doesn’t have that kind of personal attachment. But if he wins nine games in the regular season, goes to a bowl and ends up with 10 wins, how do you fire him? If he only wins 8 again, I could see the administration saying it’s not good enough, and now we go out and hire someone who takes this good young team and gets off to a running start. Bottom line: If Tech goes to a bowl, Kliff stays. Sumlin will need to do more than that.

Question: Is it possible that Tom Herman’s quarterback of the future is still in high school?

Sherrington: I think his QB of the future is in concussion protocol. What’s not to like about Sam Ehlinger? He’s carried that offense, which, granted, has generated many points. But it’s not his fault. Sure, he’ll add some competition, but the Longhorns need help in a depleted OL and at RB before they start worrying about replacing Ehlinger. A few of those WRs could stop dropping so many passes, too. And one last thing: Tim Beck shouldn’t be taking out any magazine subscriptions.

Question: Are you putting TCU on upset alert this weekend in Ames, Iowa?

Sherrington: Well, it’s less of an upset now than it was earlier in the season. I guess Texas should get extra credit for beating the Cyclones this year, considering how much trouble everyone else is having. I would expect this will be a pretty low-scoring game. Gary Patterson must convince his guys that they’ve got everything they could ever want setting up this season,and they simply have to take care of business. Won’t be easy, but that’s what will help them with the committee. If they can win tough road games in Stillwater (check), Ames and Norman, then they deserve it.

Click or tap here to enjoy the full chat.

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