Big XII Easy Pick’ems – Weekend of October 13


Brendan Maloney-US PRESSWIRE

Good news, as we finally get five full conference games. And oh they’re enticing games this week. Seriously, 4 out of 5 have excellent story lines (sorry, but no one cares about Oklahoma State/Kansas. No one). Additionally, it’s time for another round of Easy Pick’ems, as I enter my third round in trying to outwit the experts. Once again, unlike most places, this blog actually picks against the Vegas lines. Because someone has to say something more intelligent than, “expect Oklahoma State to beat Kansas this weekend – we think they are the better team.”

Texas vs. Oklahoma (-3)
Oh Red River Rivalry, how intriguing you remain in spite of your inability to field the best teams in the conference. Because this is my opportunity to thump my chest and boast, the readers should remember Jug of Snyder was about the only place courageous enough to say Oklahoma would destroy Texas Tech last weekend. Not beat – destroy. This prediction was correct. And while we have a handle on Oklahoma, what’s the deal with this Texas team? The Longhorns were supposed to win games by scores like 9-6 and 12-7. So why are they hanging 40 on everyone, but allowing nearly as many points scored? This is the game that vaunted UT defense finally shows up. Unfortunately for Longhorns fans, the offense finally shows its true colors too. Oklahoma beats their opponents, but not the spread. Oklahoma 23, Texas 21

Kansas State (-6) at Iowa State
Yes, this series has a history of extremely close games. Yes, K-State is on the road. Yes, there’s the fear K-State overlooks this game in anticipation of next week’s titanic meeting at West Virginia. No, this series hasn’t seen a team this talented on either sideline in about a decade. The Wildcats are under pressure to put their first half mental lapses behind them, but as seen against Miami and Oklahoma, these boys show up for four full quarters against worthy opponents; that’s when the Wildcats are most dangerous. Consider the Cyclones a worthy victim. This game could be very low scoring, depending on how the weather cooperates. K-State 26, Iowa State 14

Oklahoma State (-27½) at Kansas
Oklahoma State has a pretty good offense. In fact, it’s ranked tops in the nation. Kansas has some OK skill players on offense (particularly their backfield), but their offensive line can’t protect them. Oh, and they can’t stop anyone either. Of course the Cowboys win. Of course they’re capable of beating this spread too (though I don’t know if they’d hang 56 on the Jayhawks a la the Wildcats last week). However, I think Mike Gundy goes a little conservative after going up by 20 with an eye on a difficult upcoming schedule. Oklahoma State 41, Kansas 13(I know the math is tricky here – that’s ½ point more than the spread.)

Texas Christian University at Baylor (-7)
TCU got punched in the month before their game in Ames when they found out starting quarterback Andy Pachell had been cited for drunken driving and was suspended indefinitely. It got punched again when it ran up against a damn good Iowa State defense. Their red zone troubles also came to roost in a bad loss against the Cyclones. Baylor, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to have lost a single step following the departure of #2 draft pick Robert Griffin III. Another case of a Big XII team that doesn’t stop many opponents, but is even harder to stop. Baylor 38, TCU 27

And now, for this week’s Easy Pick’em:

West Virginia (-4) at Texas Tech
For the second straight week, Big XII newcomer West Virginia is a featured player in the week’s Easy Pick’em. You expect WVU to get caught sleeping? They should be plenty amped up because of this meager line alone. Sure, Texas Tech is better than the egg they laid against Oklahoma last weekend. However, does anyone really think Oklahoma is better than West Virginia? West Virginia is an even more capable scorer, and no, Texas Tech doesn’t keep within four. For the second straight week, I predict WVU to score infinity (if I pick the outcome enough times in a row, it has to happen, right? I think that’s what I learned in Statistics…) West Virginia ∞, Texas Tech 23