I hear it all the time, “Who has the best conference in college football?” SEC? Big 10? ACC? What about the Pac-12? Very rarely are you going to hear the words “Big 12” coming out of someone’s mouth in that conversation. Whether you do it or not, there are plenty of folks out there who love to bash the Big 12 conference (cough, Paul Finebaum, cough). It was another crazy weekend in the Big 12 and there was plenty of jam-packed action throughout Saturday to get through.
Iowa State (Beat Texas 23-20)
How about them Cyclones? After a slow first half, Iowa State pulled through with a solid second half. When they were down 10-0 early, I thought Iowa State would fall apart and instead, they came together and when it mattered most, put together a late touchdown drive to seal the deal. The offense was not perfect, and the defense did not play their best game, but to beat Texas, despite those flaws, is impressive. Iowa State was the better team and they won. And as crazy as it sounds, Iowa State has beaten Texas two years in a row.
I do not have an expert analysis on this because this should be about celebrating a victory for Cyclone fans. After decades and decades of irrelevance, Iowa State is at the big boy table. They belong. As long as Matt Campbell is at Iowa State, they are a force to be reckoned with, not just in the Big 12, but the entire country. No more neglect by the national media. No more glossing over Iowa State and ignoring them. Iowa State is going to Jerry World to play for a Big 12 title. Enjoy it Iowa State fans, you have earned it. Crank up that Juicy Wiggle.
Oklahoma State (Beat Texas Tech 50-44)
Let me start by saying I have no idea what happened to this defense. They gave up the most points they have all season and they allowed big play after big play. Texas Tech put up 639 yards of offense on this defense. The Oklahoma State defense was pathetic but luckily, they had a pick six and a kickoff return for a score to help.
Spencer Sanders was OK, but it was Tylan Wallace who had a monster day with 129 receiving yards and a touchdown. However, the game ball should go to running back Dezmon Jackson who finally got his chance to shine as Chuba Hubbard and LD Brown sat out. Demzon rushed for 235 yards and three touchdowns and was money for the Cowboys offense all game long. Without him, the Cowboys probably don’t win this game. Overall, it was not the best performance by Oklahoma State, but after their crushing loss to Oklahoma, I will give them a pass for this week.
TCU (Beat Kansas 59-23)
TCU completed six passes and beat Kansas by 36 points. Think about that. The Horned Frogs ran the ball for a whopping 337 yards averaging over eight yards per carry and it was great to see true freshman Zach Evans rush for 100 yards as well. Did we learn anything about TCU in this game? Not really, but a win is a win. Even if it comes against a team like Kansas.
Baylor (Beat Kansas State 32-31)
What a win and what a game for Charlie Brewer to remember. Charlie Brewer went 31/39 for 349 yards and two touchdowns. And he led the team in rushing with 56 yards. He put the offense on his back and when it mattered most, drove his team down the field to get into field goal position to set up John Mayers winning kick. Despite getting sacked seven times, Charlie showed his toughness, and I came away with a lot more respect for Charlie Brewer than I already had for him.
The defense struggled to stop the run throughout the game but got the key stop to give the offense a chance to go win the game. Baylor needed to win a game and they did. Hats off to them.
Texas Tech (Lost to Oklahoma State 50-44)
This team did not quit when they were down 50 to 31 with eight minutes left. They fought back, which I did not expect, but I still have questions about this team. Alan Bowman should be the quarterback moving forward and I liked what I saw from the offense as they racked up 639 yards of offense. The offense was not the problem. It was the defense and Matt Wells. This defense is not good, and I have said it before, and I will say it again, but defensive coordinator Keith Patterson should probably be let go after the season. Oklahoma State could do whatever they wanted on offense.
Now after all that, I turn to Matt Wells. Is he the right man at Texas Tech? I have seen bad decision after bad decision with him, and if you are a Tech fan, it leaves you scratching your head asking why? Texas Tech finally gets a 24-21 lead, and they call an onside kick, and it goes the other way for six. That pretty much has summed up the Matt Wells era at Texas Tech.
Kansas State (Lost to Baylor 32-31)
This team has fallen off a cliff. A month ago, this team was in Big 12 title talks and now they are having trouble winning a game. The offense was spotty. Despite rushing for over 200 yards, this offense was pathetic from early in the second quarter until early in the fourth quarter. So, for almost two full quarters, the offense was pathetic. But until Will Howard can complete a pass without turning the football over, this team will have a hard time winning games. I don’t think the defense played all that bad because I point most of the blame on the offense here. Although they struggled against the pass. Right now, Kansas State looks like the ninth-best team in the Big 12.
Texas (Lost to Iowa State 23-20)
What better way to sum up the Tom Herman era than losing to Iowa State for a chance to play for a Big 12 title. Herman has a 30-18 record at Texas with one Big 12 title game appearance in four years. That does not cut it at the University of Texas. All the money and resources they have at their disposal makes their lack of success even more embarrassing. Tom had some interesting decisions in this game. The fake punt from their own 48-yard line and the decision to go for it on fourth down from the Iowa State 13-yard line instead of taking three points was head scratching.
Maybe this is a blessing in disguise for Texas much like the 2016 loss to Kansas that was the final straw for the Charlie Strong era. I believe this loss to Iowa State is end of the Tom Herman era. Recruiting has been strong under Herman, but recruiting kids to Texas has not been a problem over the last decade. It has been the lack of player development. It is time for Texas to put their money where their mouth is and find a new head coach.
Kansas (Lost to TCU 59-23)
I am almost at that point where I am tired of wasting any space in my brain for this team. Kansas is horrible. TCU completed six passes and won by 36. This season has been a disaster and I am convinced that Kansas fans are in full basketball mode by now. And who can blame them?
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