Bryce Petty threw for two touchdowns and ran for another, Baylor returned two interceptions for scores and the No. 9 Bears hung on for a 41-38 victory over TCU on Saturday.
The Bears (10-1, 7-1 Big 12) scored 21 straight points on either side of halftime with just 1 yard from their high-powered offense and bounced back from a blowout loss at Oklahoma State to maintain their hopes for a share of the conference title.
Baylor could win the league outright and qualify for a BCS bid, likely the Fiesta Bowl, if it beats Texas and the Cowboys lose to Oklahoma next Saturday.
The Horned Frogs (4-8, 2-7) were in position to tie in the final seconds, but Casey Pachall threw his third interception on a pass tipped by receiver Brandon Carter and grabbed by Baylor's Terrell Burt in the end zone with 11 seconds left.
The Baylor offense had running backs Lache Seastrunk and Glasco Martin for the first time after both missed two games with injuries, but the Bears still finished 292 yards off their nation-leading average of 662. They were outgained 410-370 as Baylor finished with a season low.
Seastrunk had 92 yards against the Big 12's best rushing defense in the first half, but just 2 after halftime.
The TCU defense gave the Horned Frogs four chances to score when down just three in the fourth quarter by holding the Bears scoreless in the final period.
The first three possessions went nowhere, but the Horned Frogs were in field goal position at the Baylor 23 in the final seconds when Pachall decided to go to the end zone. Sam Holl dove in front of Carter just as the ball reached him inside the 5, and Burt cradled the tipped ball as he crossed the goal line.
Pachall erased some of a 34-17 deficit built on his mistakes with a 4-yard touchdown run and a 16-yard scoring pass to Josh Doctson.
The first scoring drive was kept alive when Baylor safety Ahmad Dixon was penalized for targeting and ejected after hitting Trevone Boykin with his helmet on a third-down incompletion.
Pachall, who was 20 of 45 for 267 yards, threw interceptions just four passes apart on either side of halftime, both returned for scores. Orion Stewart went 82 yards after slipping out a tackle by Carter, and Eddie Lackey ran untouched 54 yards to put Baylor up 34-17.
Before the two interception returns, Petty had a 1-yard scoring run after the Bears recovered a fumble at the TCU 1.
It was the final game for Pachall
, a senior who missed most of last season after entering a substance abuse program following a DWI arrest and was knocked out of five games this year with a broken arm.
Baylor went back in front 41-31 when Petty completed a 26-yard pass to Clay Fuller on third down, then found Levi Norwood on a 33-yard score. Petty had 206 yards passing.
TCU answered when Petty threw just his second interception of the season to Sam Carter, setting up TCU on the Baylor 25. Pachall fooled Stewart with a pump fake for an easy 22-yard score to David Porter on the first play of the fourth quarter to make it 41-38.
Published at 7:43 PM CST on Nov 30, 2013
Copyright Associated Press