It was a rough week for the Big 12 as the conference might have bowed out of the College Football Playoff race. Jeremy Simon looks back at the Big 12 Week 3 and ahead to Week 4.
The Big 12 had one last chance before the start of conference play to make a statement.
Unfortunately that statement was, “We aren’t interested, not this season.”
The final result; for the first time in history the Big 12 Conference does not have a team in the AP top 15.
Big 12 teams went 4-3 against non-conference opponents in week 3, I went 5-2 in my predictions. Let’s see how it all played out and what week 4 holds for the Big 12 Conference.
Texas falls to Cal 50-43
My prediction: 40-20 Texas
The Longhorns went into halftime down 35-33 after a 21 point 2nd quarter by the Bears. The problem here is simple, Cal’s offense is very similar to that of Big 12 teams which does’t bode well for the Longhorns in conference play. The Longhorns gave up 396 yards in the air and allowed Vic Enwere to rush for 110 yards on 18 carries. Steve Buechele looked like a freshman for the first time this season and Swoopes showed why he shouldn’t throw the ball that often.
The Longhorns defense simply isn’t as good as I first thought, and it may be a long road ahead in Big 12 play. The Longhorns offense had better continue to put up these kinds of numbers in order to stay in games.
Texas finished its non-conference slate 2-1 and now gets a much needed bye week before entering conference play. Charlie Strong had better put bubble wrap around Buechele to keep him healthy.
Week 4: Bye
Memphis proves Kansas is who we thought they were beating the Jayhawks 43-7
My prediction: 40-20 Memphis
Have you ever been holding onto something and have someone give you that look of, “you better give that to me?”
I’m pretty sure that is what happened to Kansas’ offense this past weekend who turned the ball over 6 times. Every time the Jayhawks seemed to gain momentum the Tigers took the ball and went home, home being the end zone.
It seems like forever ago we all were talking about the Kansas faithful rushing the field after a huge victory. Keep those thoughts of happier times close to your heart Jayhawk fans, because those days are over. Kansas finished their non-conference slate 1-2 going into their bye week.
Week 4: Bye
TCU tallies first conference win with 41-20 victory over Iowa State
My prediction: 41-17 TCU ( I was really close here)
It seems as though Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell is satisfied with going with two quarterbacks the rest of the way this season. The only problem is neither has been able to sustain long drives consistently. Kenny Hill passed for 290 yards and Kyle Hicks rushed for 117 more for TCU who never looked back after going up 10-0.
Week 4 Iowa State: The Cyclones will welcome San Jose State to Ames this weekend in their last non-conference game of the season. Problem here is San Jose State played Utah tough last weekend losing 34-17. The Spartans gave up 10 sacks to the Utes in that game. Iowa State should just blitz everyone every play. I do like Iowa State in this game but just barely.
My prediction: Iowa State 27, San Jose State 24
Week 4 TCU: The Horned Frogs travel to Dallas to take on SMU. The Mustangs didn’t fare well against Baylor on September 10th, will be about the same result in this game. TCU may squeeze their way back into the AP Top 25 with a victory on the road.
My prediction: TCU 45, SMU 24
Baylor looks unimpressive with 38-10 victory over Rice
My prediction: 60-13 Baylor
For the second week in a row the Bears were unable to get points on the board in the first quarter. Slow starts are going to become a problem for Baylor once they actually start playing legitimate competition. Unable to cover the spread (-30) Baylor’s offense looked pedestrian last week against the Owls. However, their defense is still looking tough.
Week 4: One aspect of Baylor’s non-conference schedule I don’t like is the lack of competition. The Bears’ closest game this season has been 27 points – but they’ve still been tested. That all ends this week when Baylor welcomes Oklahoma State. The Cowboys can score, averaging just over 44 points per game this season – and they’re an actual good opponent.
But this is the first game I’m truly at a loss. Baylor’s offense just hasn’t impressed me yet and Oklahoma’s defense is in the same category. Baylor is favored by 10 so I’ll go with the spread in this game.
My prediction: Baylor 45, Oklahoma State 35
Texas Tech defense continues to struggle as Red Raiders beat Louisiana Tech 59-45
My prediction: 50-49 Texas Tech
Patrick Mahomes passed for 470 yards and Demarcus Felton added 123 on the ground. The problem is Texas Tech’s defense is just terrible. The Bulldogs scored only 8 points less against South Carolina State than they did in this game. Texas Tech cornerbacks coach Karl Scott spent last season at Louisiana Tech as the Bulldogs safeties coach. Yet Louisiana Tech still passed for 311 yards.
I don’t understand either. The Red Raiders defense has one of the most prolific passing offenses at practice every day. I assure you that if they are able to stop Mahomes they will be able to stop most in college football. Confidence is low that the Red Raiders can compete in the Big 12 this season as long as the defense continues to keep everyone in the game.
The Red Raiders finished their non-conference slate 2-1 and now rest for a week before entering conference play.
Week 4: Bye
Oklahoma State outlasts weather and Pitt to beat Panthers 45-38
My prediction: 27-24 Pitt
No, I didn’t have a ton of confidence in the Cowboys after losing to Central Michigan. The Cowboys gave up 290 yards on the ground against the Panthers who do have a loaded backfield. But OSU will have to cut back on those yards if they want to continue to win within the conference.
Offensively the Cowboys did look good with Mason Rudolph passing for 540 yards accompanied by 101 on the ground from Rennie Childs. Just like Texas Tech, though, if the defense can not start shutting teams down it will be a long season.
Week 4: The Cowboys travel to Baylor and their defense better make the trip as well.
My prediction: Baylor 45, Oklahoma State 35
Kansas State toys with FAU to tune of 63-7
My prediction: 44-13 Kansas State
The Wildcats have kind of been forgotten lately after losing to Stanford in week 1. Here is the thing, they aren’t that bad of a team. Outscoring FAU 42-0 in the first half the Wildcats defense didn’t let up in the second half either. FAU finished the game with 211 total yards. Yes, it is nice to see some defense out of a Big 12 team. FAU put up 214 yards against Miami and scored 3 more points in that contest.
Week 4: Kansas State ends their non-conference schedule against Missouri State. No one will talk about this game as it will be a worse beating than last week. I would like to see a little more passing yards this week from the Wildcats. Being one-dimensional in the Big 12 can hurt you.
My prediction: Kansas State 70, FAU 7
Oklahoma surprises all by taking a beating at home losing 45-24 to Ohio State
My prediction: 35-24 Ohio State (right on the money with OU score)
This was by no means an upset, Ohio State was favored in this game. What surprised everyone was the manner in which the Buckeyes dismantled the Sooners. In almost every aspect of the game OSU dominated.
The stat sheet shows a fairly even game, but the two Mayfield interceptions resulted in 14 points for the Buckeyes. And OSU receiver Noah Brown almost single-handedly outscored the Sooners scoring 4 touchdowns on just 5 receptions.
I’m sorry Sooner fans, but even at 10-2 OU’s hopes of returning to the College Playoffs this season are gone.
Week 4: The Sooners have a week off to lick their wounds before conference play begins. I will say I commend OU for taking the road less traveled and playing legitimate non-conference competition. Just wish at least one of those games would have ended in their favor.
West Virginia to face BYU on neutral field
Coming off a bye week the Mountaineers will travel to Landover, MD to face BYU. The Cougars enter this weekend 1-2 after losing two close games. Don’t expect the contest this weekend to any different. The Mountaineers are currently favored by 1.5.
I expect a low scoring affair as BYU’s defense has held everyone in check so far this season. However, this will be the most potent offense the Cougars will have faced.
West Virginia should win this game and remain one of only two undefeated Big 12 teams.
My prediction: WVU 21, BYU 17
While there are no marquee matchups this week in the Big 12 there are plenty of interesting games. WVU vs BYU and Oklahoma State vs Baylor are your must what games. The Mountaineers look to finish the non-conference portion of their schedule 3-0 with wins over an SEC opponent as well as a highly ranked FCS school.
Baylor also looks to remain undefeated and officially take the reigns as the team to beat in the Big 12 conference.
If you’re looking for an upset you may want to tune into the Iowa State vs San Jose State game.