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Can a one-loss Big 12 team secure a playoff berth?

Gary Patterson is confident TCU won't have to remain unbeaten if the Horned Frogs hope to make the College Football Playoff, writes Carlos Mendez of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

“Everybody slips up,” TCU's veteran coach said. “Ohio State lost to Virginia Tech last year, and they still won a national championship. So I don’t believe you have to be undefeated.”

Does that apply to the Big 12? I'm not so sure.

It's true that Alabama, Oregon and Ohio State earned berths with a loss last season, but TCU and Baylor found themselves left out with a similar record.

It's an interesting question, mainly because the Big 12 hasn't done itself any favors with its recent bowl results. The conference went 2-5 in bowl games in 2014, 3-3 in 2013 and 4-5 in 2012.

Those lackluster results are one reason Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby mentioned playing better more than once during Big 12 media days.

"What do we have to do? We have to get better," he said. "We have to win big games when we have them before us, and we have to demonstrate by competition in the postseason that our conference has led us to be highly competitive at the end of the season."

No matter what happens this fall, people will remember the number 5 in the Big 12's loss column after the 2014 postseason. And when the time comes to compare conferences and one-loss teams, that 2-5 record will be used as a weapon to diminish the Big 12 team's argument.

Even though Patterson is right, my advice is to go undefeated and leave the decision out of the committee's hands, even though that's much easier said than done.