TCU left out of the BCS, will play in Poinsettia Bowl

The BCS invite list is a short one.

After the top two teams are selected for the championship game, the remaining four
bowls are slotted with the eight most qualified teams in the country. Simple math
will tell you only 8.3 percent Football Bowl Subdivision teams – 10 out of 120 — get
to crash the BCS party.

So, even good teams get left out.

Gary Patterson knows that and is willing to accept it.

Patterson made no complaints after it was announced Sunday night his team would
not be playing in a BCS bowl game for the first time since the 2008 season.

After Houston lost Saturday, TCU needed to crack the top 16 of the final BCS
standings in order to earn its third straight BCS bowl bid, likely a trip to Sugar Bowl
against Michigan.

But it didn’t happen.

The Frogs moved up to no. 15 in the USA Today Coaches poll but remained 18th in
the BCS and instead, will face Louisiana Tech in the Poinsettia Bowl Dec. 21.

With only a limited number of BCS slots available, even good teams get left out
sometimes, Patterson said.

“You have a No. 6 Arkansas team that isn’t going to a BCS bowl either,” Patterson
pointed out. “Only a certain number of teams get the opportunity to go, and you
have to be very lucky. We were fortunate a year ago that Boise State got beat. The
key to it is you’ve got to be good, and you have to be a little bit lucky.”

Patterson said he trusts the way things shook out – even if it didn’t fall completely in
TCU’s favor.

“I believe the football gods always make sure things happen the way they’re
supposed to happen,” Patterson said.

What the Frogs have to focus on now, Patterson said, is beating an 8-4 Louisiana
Tech team that beat an SEC school in Ole Miss and nearly upset Houston before
losing 35-34.

A win – or a loss, for that matter – would factor into TCU’s offseason mindset as the
team prepares to join the Big 12 next season, Patterson said.

“It’s like I told them in pregame, ‘Do you want to have an eight-game winning streak
or do you want to have a one game losing streak?” Patterson said. “Do you want to
be preseason ranked or do you not want to be ranked at all? Because that’s what’s in
jeopardy for the team that returns next year? You either end the season with a win
or you end the season with a loss. It’s pretty simple.”