ARLINGTON, Texas — Texas Tech almost shook up the Big 12 and national playoff races in the closest the Red Raiders will get to a bowl game.
Patrick Mahomes set a Big 12 freshman record with his 598 yards on 30 of 56 passing that included six touchdowns, but was sacked on the two-point try after the last one with 1:42 left Saturday as the Red Raiders lost their season finale 48-46 to fifth-ranked Baylor.
"I have been happy with the effort since we basically lost out on bowl eligibility," coach Kliff Kingsbury said. "We talked about character and playing hard and playing for the seniors."
Tech (4-7, 2-7, Big 12) was down big soon after Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty was knocked out with a mild concussion midway through the third quarter. Seth Russell took over and his 27-yard touchdown pass to Levi Norwood made it 42-17.
The teams traded field goals before the Red Raiders scored 20 unanswered points, on three TD passes of at least 40 yards by Mahomes.
After 1,000-yard rusher DeAndre Washington turned a short pass into a 49-yard TD with 8:13 left, the Red Raiders were within 45-40 after a failed two-point try.
"I'm not sure if it was a game or a war, quite honestly," Baylor coach Art Briles said. "A desperate man is a dangerous man, and we were dealing with a desperate man tonight."
The Red Raiders finished without a bowl game for the second time in four seasons, following a stretch of 11 consecutive bowl appearances from 2000-10. They have their first season with fewer than five wins since going 4-7 in 1990.
The final TD was a 40-yarder to Bradley Marquez, his third scoring catch. Tech's ensuing onside kick was recovered by Shock Linwood, who ran for 156 yards and two touchdowns to give the Bears a 1,000-yard rusher for the fifth consecutive season.
Baylor (10-1, 7-1, No. 7 CFP) is guaranteed at least a share of it second consecutive conference title by winning the regular-season finale at home against No. 11 Kansas State (9-2, 7-1) next Saturday.
As for the Bears' playoff chances after a close call against a losing team, those are far more uncertain.
There will be some changes in the new College Football Playoff rankings Tuesday night after No. 4 Mississippi State's loss, but Baylor was already two spots behind another Big 12 co-leader in TCU. The Horned Frogs are coming off an impressive 48-10 Thanksgiving night romp at Texas.
Petty, who threw for 210 yards and two touchdowns, was hurt after being hit by linebacker Sam Eguavoen, who was penalized for a personal foul. Petty remained down for several minutes before getting up and walking slowly to the sideline and then going to the locker room. He returned before the end of the quarter, still in uniform but without shoulder pads or his helmet.
Petty said afterward that he felt good and would definitely play against Kansas State next week.
Baylor has won four straight games in the series played at the Dallas Cowboys' NFL stadium. This one turned into the expected shootout even though it was only 7-0 after the first quarter on Linwood's 8-yard run.
After combining to average nearly 101 points and 1,145 total yards per game the last three years, they had 94 points and 1,259 yards this time. Texas Tech rolled up 712 yards, and Baylor had 547.
The Red Raiders had three 100-yard receivers for the first time since 2005 — Marquez (six catches, 130 yards), Washington (six, 107) and Jakeem Grant (five, 155). Washington, Tech's first 1,000-yard rusher since 1998, also had 65 yards rushing on 15 carries.
But they had 11 penalties for 125 yards, including two that led to a first-and-30 play before its last touchdown. There were three consecutive fumbles inside Baylor territory in the first quarter.
"We're just not very disciplined. That's the biggest thing I take away from this whole year, and that's on me," Kingsbury said. "So I've got to get that straightened out this offseason."
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