West Virginia

Simon: Big 12 Week 2 Musings & Week 3 Predictions


The Big 12 went 4-5 this past week in non-conference games, not exactly the turnaround I was expecting from week one. I went 5-4 in my predictions but am protesting two of those losses.


Big 12 Week 2 Lookback, Week 3 Lookahead

Jeremy Simon is the owner of BlueGoldSports.com covering West Virginia University. He’s also a contributor to USA Today Sports, CFN and Athlon Sports.

West Virginia pulls away late to beat Youngstown State 38-21

My prediction: 45-13 WVU

It really was a great win for the Mountaineers. Yes, YSU is an FCS school but not a normal FCS team with Bo Pelini putting together something strong. WVU improved to 2-0 and now gets a much needed bye week coming up. What’s good for West Virginia and troubling for the rest of the league is that this might have been the biggest win the Big 12 had in Week Two.  Let that sink in as we move on.

Week 3: Bye

Texas rolls over UTEP 41-7

My prediction: 55-10 Texas

I’m really liking this Buechele kid after looking terrific throwing for 244 yards and four touchdowns. The Longhorns may have found their go-to receiver in former QB Jerrod Heard, who caught his first two touchdown passes – now the passing game has real weapons.

Remember when everyone in Texas was so excited about linebacker Malik Jefferson when he committed last year? He’s showing what all the big deal was about and now, after two weeks, the Longhorns continue to be the bright spot for the Big 12 Conference.

Week 3: The Longhorns go on the road for the first time this season as they travel to Berkeley, CA to play the Cal Bears. Texas lost this matchup least season 45-44. But the Bears aren’t as good this year and Texas is on a roll.

Prediction: Texas 40, Cal 20

#14 Oklahoma takes care of Louisiana-Monroe 59-17

My prediction: 60-6 Oklahoma

Like I had anticipated last week, this outcome was expected. UL-Monroe scored a little more than I had anticipated, but a 42 point victory still suffices. Sooners passed for 352 and ran for 288. Garrett Smith did look good for UL-Monroe going 22-of-35 for 251 and a pair of touchdown passes for a much-needed confidence boost for the Sooners because now ….

Week 3: The Sooners welcome No. 3 Ohio State into Norman in what will be a make or break game for Oklahoma. Ohio State is slightly favored in this contest (-2.5) and rightfully so. However, the Buckeyes haven’t faced legitimate competition yet, something that will bode in OU’s favor. But I just can’t see OU keeping up with OSU in this one.

Prediction: Ohio State 35 Oklahoma 24

Baylor catches stride in second half to beat SMU 40-13

My prediction: 45-20

One of the most potent offenses in the nation couldn’t find the endzone until their opening drive in the 3rd. But a 20 point 3rd put the game out of reach after a 6 point first half. Was kind of a pedestrian effort on behalf the Bears, nothing really exciting so we’ll move on.

Week 3: For the love of all that is holy can Baylor play a legitimate non-conference opponent? The Bears will drive right past the University of Houston, which for the record I would too, to play Rice. It’s like that bully in grade school who would walk around the big kid to pick on the little kid with glasses.

Prediction: Baylor 60 Rice 13

Kansas falls 37-21 to Ohio

My prediction: 28-17 Kansas

The stage was set, I had my running shoes on. I was going to join in the festivities of another rush of the field after Kansas beat Ohio. I wasn’t there, I was going to run around my yard but I was going to be there is spirit. But an average of 1.7 yards per rush made all right in the world again as Kansas never stood a chance against the juggernaut that is Ohio University.

Week 3: Lets call this the “winner take all bowl” as Kansas travels to Memphis where the Tigers are favored by almost 20. Memphis shows the world what it’s missing after being snubbed by the Big 12.

Prediction: Memphis 40 Kansas 20

Texas Tech falls to Arizona State 68-55

My prediction: 50-47 Texas Tech

I was half right in my prediction as Mahomes put up some great numbers. But the star of the night was the non-existent Red Raiders defense that allowed ASU’s Kalen Ballage to tie the NCAA record with eight touchdowns.

How hard is it to tell a linebacker, “just go get that guy?”

When Sparky the Sun Devil wins the strongest man alive competition he better acknowledge Texas Tech for all those push-ups he did that night.

Week 3: The Red Raiders welcome Louisiana Tech. The line on this game is currently Texas Tech -11. The Bulldogs are coming off a 53 point performance last week and only lost to Arkansas by 1. I’d seriously worry about the upset here. I’m definitely not inclined to take the spread.

Prediction: Texas Tech 50 Louisiana Tech 49

Iowa State falls 42-3 to No. 16 Iowa

My prediction: 34-21 Iowa

Iowa State had so score more than a field goal, right? Someone tell the Cyclones they don’t have to save all their touchdowns for Texas Tech – the Red Raiders give those things away like Halloween candy. 4.7 yards per pass and 3.6 per run isn’t going to get you far against anyone. Iowa was just better.

Week 3: Iowa State travels to TCU for the first Big 12 conference game of the season. Great news here Cyclones fans, those days of only scoring three points in a game are over. TCU likes to give the fans what they paid for. TCU is just too good of a team although I’m not sold on taking the spread at TCU -23

Prediction: TCU 41 Iowa State 17

TCU comeback against Arkansas falls short losing 41-38 (2OT)

My prediction: 45-37 TCU

After being outscored 13-0 in the first half, TCU scored 21 in the third to take the lead. Unfortunately, Texas A&M transfer Kenny Hill decided a slashing gesture after his touchdown was the best way to celebrate a game clinching TD run. The 15-yard penalty assessed on the ensuing kickoff gave Arkansas great field position leading to the tying score in regulation.

I’m sure the throat slashing gesture is fine at Texas A&M, but from now on I’d recommend something different. Do the hokey pokey, turn yourself around. At least if a ref flags you for unsportsmanlike conduct you can claim an itch or a cramp, or a concussion. I’ll stop short of saying that penalty eventually caused the upset but I am protesting this loss for the sake of my record.

Week 3: TCU will get back into the win column against Iowa State and for at least one week lead the Big 12 Conference. Remember Kenny, think Barney from Barney and Friends, not Jason from Friday the 13th.

Prediction: TCU 41 Iowa State 17

Oklahoma State loses to Central Michigan and Big 12 30-27

My prediction: 44-20 Oklahoma State

While I was significantly off on the score I’m protesting this loss as well for obvious reasons.

CMU played OSU tough last season so yet another close game was no surprise. There’s really no reason to relive the last play or how it should never have taken place. At lot has been taken away from the fact that CMU’s Hail Mary was fantastically executed.

Remember when the Big 12 touted “One True Champion” all season in 2014 until crowning co-champions and potentially causing the Big 12 to lose out on the first College Playoff? Although different players the non-call at the end of this game could have potentially hurt the conference as well. At least they did it early in the season this time.

Week 3: The Cowboys travel back home to face Pitt this weekend. The Panthers are coming off a huge win over in-state rival Penn State in front of the biggest crowd that University will ever see. Momentum is in the Panthers favor and although it goes against everything I stand for I am predicting a potential upset in Stillwater.

Prediction: Pitt 27 Oklahoma State 24

Kansas State had bye in week 2

Week 3: The Wildcats will face Florida Atlantic at home this weekend. KSU is favored by 21, and I expect them to cover the spread. Having a week off after fighting tough against a good Stanford team wasn’t a bad thing. This game shouldn’t be much to watch. Florida Atlantic is coming off a 28 point loss to Miami and problems tackling for FAU can spell doom for the Owls in Manhattan.

Prediction: Kansas State 44 Florida Atlantic 13

Oklahoma highlights the Big 12 slate of games this week and a win over Ohio State could be a huge boost for the Conference.

There are no MAC schools on the schedule this week so things are already looking up and we are still five days away from kickoff. If Texas can also take care of Cal all will be right with the world again as Texas and Oklahoma regain dominance in college football.