West Virginia

Simon: Big 12 Week 4 Musings & Week 5 Predictions

What happened in the Big 12 in Week 4 and what’s up next in Week 5? Jeremy Simon dives in.

It was an uneventful week for the Big 12 Conference. But after most of September being a train wreck this is a welcome change. Week 4 was the last of the non-conference games for Big 12 teams as the conference finished 4-0 against non-conference opponents this week with Baylor covering the spread against Oklahoma State.

I finished the week 5-0 in my predictions; I’m not bragging, it wasn’t that tough.

Let’s see how Big 12 teams did last week and take a look at the first full week of conference games.

Baylor improves to 4-0 with win over Oklahoma State 35-24

My prediction: 45-35 Baylor

I had expected more scoring in this contest. Seth Russell was the story in this game though throwing 4 touchdown passes and accumulating 387 yards through the air. Baylor’s receiving corp is fast, if you missed Chris Platt’s 89 yard TD reception take time to go look.

In the end this was your typical Big 12 matchup, over 1,000 yards of total offense between the two teams. Baylor’s defense may still be one of the best in the conference, yes even after giving up almost 500 yards of offense.

Week 5 Baylor: The No. 13 ranked Bears will travel to Iowa State in what should be their 5th win of the season. Iowa State is coming off a 44 point performance against San Jose State for their first win of the season. Doesn’t matter though, Baylor will be the toughest defense they’ve seen this season. Baylor is favored by 17 for good reason.

Prediction: Baylor 44 Iowa State 17

Week 5 Oklahoma State: The Cowboys return home to face No. 22 Texas. This is probably the best Big 12 matchup of week 5 and for good reason, this will be a high scoring game where neither team should really see an advantage. Texas is coming off a bye week after letting Cal score at will. The Cowboys will need this game to stay relevant.

Prediction: Oklahoma State 44 Texas 40

Iowa State chalks up first win of the season beating San Jose State 44-10

My Prediction: 27-24 Iowa State

I obviously didn’t give Iowa State the credit they deserved in this game. But really has anyone given the Cyclones credit this season? Maybe my prediction was bulletin board material because the Cyclones scored at will on Saturday. All 3 QB’s combined to go 22/29 for 316 yards and 5 passing TD’s.

Iowa State’s defense only gave up 332 total yards against a team that has already put up much more than that this season. This was a good win by the Cyclones albeit by a less than quality opponent.

Week 5: The offensive show the Cyclones displayed last week is a thing of the past. With Baylor coming to town this weekend don’t expect an encore performance.

Prediction: Baylor 44 Iowa State 17

TCU walks past SMU 33-3

I still do not understand why so many Big 12 teams seem to struggle in the first quarter of games. This game was knotted at 3 after the 1st quarter, but it was over from there.

Kenny Hill may be the best all-around QB in the Big 12 this year. Hill finished the game 31/45 for 452 yards and 2 TD’s.

The TCU running game is still suspect only coming up with 137 yards on the ground. While the Horned Frogs don’t seem to be a one dimensional team they were this game.

Week 5: TCU returns home to what was once expected to be a marquee Big 12 contest with Oklahoma. The Sooners now enter this game unranked. Oklahoma is favored in this game but only by 3.5. I really want to give this game to the Sooners but have not been able to get over their lack of defense against Power 5 teams.

TCU will have to establish some kind of running game against the Sooners but I do expect Hill to be productive. Until the Sooners can beat someone of substance I have trouble picking them to win. I’m going with TCU

Prediction: TCU 35 Oklahoma 30

Kansas State dismantles Missouri State 35-0 in 2 quarters

My prediction: 70-7 Kansas State

I’m going to say I was 100% on this prediction, 35 X 2 =70. It took Kansas State only one half to put away Missouri State in a weather shortened contest. This game was already out of hand and it was only going to get worse. Kansas State could do no wrong against the Bears.

Week 5: Kansas State travels to West Virginia. The Wildcats have never lost to the Mountaineers. However, the last two contests have been decided by a total of 7 points and the Mountaineers had held the lead the majority of both games. The Mountaineers are coming off a close victory against BYU. The Wildcats have not had any competition since week one.

West Virginia has opened as a 6.5 point favorite but don’t expect either team to win by more than 6. There really is no edge to either team in this game so I’m going with the home team -3.

Prediction: WVU 30 Kansas State 27

West Virginia survives BYU 35-32

My prediction: 21-17 WVU

BYU came into this game averaging 17 points per, they left with 32. The Mountaineers defense looked suspect on Saturday allowing 280 rushing yards, an alarming stat to keep in mind moving into conference play. However, the WVU defense giveth, and the WVU defense taketh away. BYU committed big turnovers at critical times in the game to secure the win for the Mountaineers.

There were no standout players for the Mountaineers on Saturday other than Shelton Gibson who finished with 144 receiving yards on just 4 receptions.

Week 5: West Virginia welcomes Kansas State to Morgantown. As mentioned above, this game is never kind to the Mountaineers. Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder has spoken highly of WVU recently. However, he always seems to find a way to beat Holgorsen and company. Going with the home team in this game simply because the matchup is too close to call. West Virginia should spend one more week as one of the conference’s unbeatens.

Prediction: WVU 30 Kansas State 27

Kansas @ Texas Tech

Both teams are coming off bye weeks. Getting into conference play Red Raider fans should be worried about the lack of defense Texas Tech as shown so far this season. Fortunately for TTU, a complete defensive breakdown could occur and it wouldn’t matter this week.

I always want to say something nice about Kansas, the Jayhawks are just too easy to pick on. Unfortunately I just can’t find anything positive. Texas Tech is favored by 28.5 points in this game and that may be low. Don’t look for Kansas to stick with the Red Raiders long in this one.

Prediction: Texas Tech 55 Kansas 10

Texas @ Oklahoma State

The Longhorns deserved a bye week. The emotional, and seemingly season defining win over Notre Dame, seemed like ages ago. Now recovering from a high scoring loss at Cal Texas is trying to regroup.

While Texas is the ranked team in this matchup they are current the underdog on the road by 3.5. But this game is truly a toss-up. Both teams seem to struggle defensively at times while putting up impressive offensive numbers. Yes, it is yet another prototypical Big 12 matchup. Sticking with the home team here in a high scoring affair

Prediction: Oklahoma State 44 Texas 40

Oklahoma at TCU

You think the Longhorns emotional roller coaster was bad? The Sooners have been the proverbial whipping boy for any and all top 10 teams that come across their path. A preseason College Playoff lock, the Sooners are now hoping just to stay in the top 25.

Unfortunately TCU stands in the way of the Sooners getting back on track. I’ve been surprised by the lack of scoring by the Sooners through 3 games. TCU’s defense is known to give up some points but I’m not sure they will give up enough to lose. Sticking with the home team here as well.

Prediction: TCU 35 Oklahoma 30

Now comes that time of the season where the Big 12 just beats up on each other. At this point someone will have to almost run the table in order to even get considered for the CFP. At least these games are fun to watch. Texas Tech and Baylor drew the longer straws this week in what should be easy wins. But past the Red Raiders and Bears, most games this coming weekend are toss-ups.

Enjoy Big 12 fans, there are really no potential upsets this week. Arguments can be made for each team as to why they should and could win. Well except for Iowa State and Kansas.