Big 12 Up For Grabs
It was a wild and crazy last weekend in the Big 12 as we hit the 8 week mark of the season. Undefeated Baylor tumbled in Morgantown, the Sooners lost at home to Bill Snyder’s squad, and the Horned Frogs dismantled the Cowboys in Ft. Worth. And we have sooooo much more to still enjoy. As it stands right now Kansas State stands alone at the top of the conference with a 3-0 record (5-1 overall), with their only blemish being a “3 missed field goals” loss to No. 5 ranked Auburn in Manhattan. Next comes 3-1 Baylor (6-1 overall), 3-1 West Virginia (5-2 overall), 3-1 Oklahoma State (5-2 overall), and the Frogs at 2-1 (5-1 overall). So we’re 8 weeks in and what do we know about the season and how it will end up? Absolutely nothing – and that’s what so great about it.
TCU is ranked highest nationally of the Big 12 teams at No. 10 in both the AP and USA Today Coaches’ Polls, but still have to travel to West Virginia on Nov. 1, and play host to K-State the following weekend. K-State, ranked 11th in both polls, in addition to the Nov. 8 game in Ft Worth, still has to play OSU at home and travel to both Morgantown and Waco. West Virginia, coming off their big win against the Bears, travels to Stillwater this weekend, but then gets to take on the Frogs and Wildcats both at home – a tough place for any visiting team to play as Baylor just found out. The Bears ranked No. 12 in the AP poll and No. 13 in the Coaches Poll, should easily rebound from their loss last weekend with the Kansas Jayhawks coming to town, but still have to travel to Norman before they take on both the Cowboys and Wildcats (last game of the year) in Waco.
The bigger picture for the conference and its members is the 4-team playoff for the National Championship. With 2 losses each Oklahoma, West Virginia and Oklahoma State are out of that picture, but TCU, Baylor and K-State can still dream….until they lose a 2nd game. If any of those three can run the table, they’ll be in the discussion at the end of the year to be one of those 4 teams – lose a game and that dream will be over.
“In this league, hold on to your hat,” TCU head coach Gary Patterson said. “If I’ve learned anything these last few weeks, it’s that anyone can play. Any given day, anyone can get after you.”
A statistical look at what lies ahead for the Big 12 according to ESPN’s Football Power Index:
Team Chance to win Big 12 Chance to win out
Baylor 31.0% 17.9%
TCU 31.0% 24.7%
Kansas State 17.1% 1.9%
Oklahoma 11.2% 43.8%
West Virginia 9.1% 4.6%