Big XII Easy Pick'ems - Weekend of October 6

Big upset for Iowa State left me at 3-1 on the weekend. I thought the Cyclones would play the Horned Frogs close – I certainly didn’t foresee them laying wood like they did in a two touchdown victory. I performed better than last week, but room for improvement remains.

Week (Season)
Straight Up: 3-1 (7-1)
Against the Spread: 4-0 (6-2)

Kansas at #7 Kansas State (-24)
Prediction: K-State 55, Kansas 13
Final: K-State 56, Kansas 16

Not to brag, but somebody pretty much nailed this score – although there’s no way I would’ve predicted this outcome during a halftime that saw K-State headed to the locker room clinging to a 21-14 lead with a defense that looked completely inept. I’m not sure what it was, but something happened during intermission that turned the unit around in a sort of Dr. Jeckell/Mr. Hyde manner. I was scared for KU’s Dayne Crist during the third quarter, and I didn’t even want him to be successful. The march continues, as this game landed K-State at #5 in the polls this week.

 #17 Oklahoma (-6) at Texas Tech
Prediction: Oklahoma 55, Texas Tech 13
Final: Oklahoma 41, Texas Tech 20

I’m gonna sit atop my high horse for this recap as well. ESPN, the AP, and some jackass at the end of the bar all knew they were gonna look smart by calling this upset. Texas Tech’s defense was simply too good, and Oklahoma’s offense was too lackluster. What frustrates me is that it’s not just an issue of disrespect for the Sooners – it’s a disrespect for K-State. Sooner or later, the national media is gonna have to accept the Wildcats as one of the best teams in the nation. K-State was picked to finish 6th in the conference, now they’re 5th in the nation. OU lost a close game to one of the best teams in the country, and that’s no reason to write them off. Landry Jones and company bounced back to set the stage for what promises to be a riveting Red River Showdown next weekend against Texas.

 Iowa State at #15 Texas Christian (-10)
Prediction: TCU 20, Iowa State 16
Final: Iowa State 37, TCU 23

I whiffed hardcore on this pick. I knew Iowa State would beat the spread, but next time a team’s starting QB is suspended before the game I should reserve the right to revise my prediction. Actually, I was pretty close on predicting TCU’s final score – but Iowa State’s offense impressed this weekend. ISU started Josh Lenz on Saturday, and he responded by tossing three touchdown passes. Iowa State’s defense helped by recording a pick-six, but the Cyclones look ready to score points in this conference going forward. Farmageddon may remain relevant after all.

#8 West Virginia at #11 Texas (-7)
Prediction:
West Virginia ∞, Texas 28
Final: West Virginia 48, Texas 45

I called this game the week’s easy pick’em, and it was about as easy as I predicted. West Virginia not only beat the ridiculous -7 spread, they straight up beat Texas. I’ll admit to being a tad off in predicting a scoring differential of infinity, but this remains the team you don’t want to get in a shootout with. Now that West Virginia has discovered a running game to complement Geno Smith’s arcadelike play, the parallels to Oklahoma State last year are clear. I can’t fault the pollsters for jumping the Mountaineers over K-State this week. And anyone remember when Texas was supposed to have an ‘SEC caliber defense?’ Maybe their games are more reflection of how the SEC defenses aren’t as impenetrable as the national media likes to portend. Either way, we’ll see if the revamped Texas Tech defense can find a way to at least slow down West Virginia before a huge showdown in Morgantown on October 20 when K-State visits for a game that could determine the Big XII champion.

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