Kansas State would have stomped a mud-hole in the Bears. The Wildcats
appeared invincible while the Bears vied with Kansas for top honors in
Big 12 gridiron ineptitude.
But things have changed a mite. Kansas State still looks plenty tough,
but Baylor is suddenly competitive with Big 12 royalty as their performance
against Oklahoma last week showed. The turnaround is because the Bears
are now playing halfway decent defense.
Of course, halfway decent is totally insufficient when facing Collin Klein
and the Manhattan Maulers, but Baylor's defensive uptick does give the
Bears an outside shot at springing the upset. But it won't happen, of course.
KSU looks like a team of destiny. A team destined to play in the national
The Vision: Kansas State 41 Baylor 29
Iowa State at Kansas: You just get the sense that Kansas is due to
finally win a Big 12 game. And you also get the sense that Iowa State
is a beaten down and vulnerable team.
Although it is Kansas that is winless in Big 12 play, they are the team
with higher morale and motivation. Iowa State, on the other hand,
has seen a once fairly promising season resolve into ashes. The Cyclone
defense is still good, of course, but despite holding the opposition below
their offensive averages on a weekly basis, ISU's offensive weakness means
that they're never really a threat to win.
This game will be close, but the home field advantage will be enough to
see the Jayhawks through to their first conference win since
Bob Dole was a pup.
The Vision: Kansas 25 Iowa State 22
Oklahoma at West Virginia: The Sooners, an oversold team if there
ever was one, are prime upset meat, but only if they're playing a stable,
sound and confident opponent. The Mountaineers, unfortunately, are
about as stable as Keith Olberman, as sound as a condemned building
astride the San Andreas fault, and as confident George Stephanopoulos
stepping into the ring with Manny Pacquiao.
West Virginia actually has the talent to beat Oklahoma, but they do not
have the coaching and the intangibles to pull off the upset. Still, this will
certainly be an entertaining and high scoring affair.
The Vision: Oklahoma 44 West Virginia 35
matchup of two ships passing in the night and heading in totally
opposite directions. With the exception of a baffling loss to Arizona
early in the year, the Cowboys have played rather well the entire
season. And certainly they're playing their best football right now.
They've whipped the tar out of Iowa State, TCU and West Virginia
in three of their last four outings and now draw a Red Raider team
that they've owned for about as long as anybody can remember.
Speaking of the Red Raiders, it really looks like their best days are
behind them in 2012. Injuries, a lack of depth, red zone offensive
woes and a defense that is slow to adjust, have rendered Tech a
very average football team, and that's a shame because the Red Raiders
of September and early October were formidable indeed.
What it boils down to is that you can't see Tech getting many stops at
all against the versatile and lethal OSU attack.
The Vision: Oklahoma State 50 Texas Tech 26