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Trevone Boykin rallies TCU past upset-minded Kansas

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Orlin Wagner/Associated Press
QB Trevone Boykin and TCU narrowly survived an upset bid from Kansas on Saturday.

For three quarters, Kansas played like it was Baylor.

In the final quarter, however, the Jayhawks reverted to form and looked like Kansas.

TCU survived a trip to Lawrence and tough winter conditions by a nose in a 34-30 win over a Jayhawks team that was thinking upset from the start.

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The Horned Frogs looked as though they were going to put on another offensive show when they started the game with a quick, seven-play drive that took just over two minutes and resulted in a touchdown. Kansas responded right away with a 17-play, 76-yard drive for a score that showed it would be no push-over on Saturday.

Quarterback Trevone Boykin had an average day despite a quality stat-line. He finished 26-of-36 for 330 yards and a touchdown but did throw an interception in the second quarter (which didn't end up leading to any Kansas points).

Still, the Heisman Trophy candidate came through when he was needed most by leading two key scoring drives during the third quarter that eventually culminated in a field goal that gave TCU its final points of the day in blustery conditions.

Kansas, fresh off its first Big 12 win of the season, gave the No. 4-ranked team in the country all it could handle, though. The Jayhawks led by as much as 10 in the second half and made the rest of the country know about their upset alert when receiver Nigel King turned in one of the catches of the year with a juggling reception along the sideline that he took 78 yards for a touchdown.

TCU running back Aaron Green ran for 128 yards and two touchdowns while earning another start in place of the injured B.J. Catalon. Cameron Echols-Luper proved to be the final nail in the coffin for the Jayhawks, returning a punt 69 yards for a touchdown late in the third quarter that gave TCU the lead for good.

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The narrow win will no doubt fuel critics of coach Gary Patterson's team. Those critics questioned the College Football Playoff selection committee putting the team in the top four -- several spots higher than the Baylor team the Horned Frogs lost to, which had the same 8-1 record when the rankings were released.

A win is a win at the end of the day, but in the new era where the margins to make the sport's first FBS playoff are razor thin, the trip to play Kansas might have been a costly one for TCU.

You can follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter at @BryanDFischer.

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