Big 12 Preview: Week 5

Six league teams begin conference play looking to start the conference season off on a positive note.

IN-CONFERENCE OUTAGE

While Big 12 teams have piled up points in non-conference games, there have been a total of just 69 points scored in two conference tilts to date. West Virginia and Baylor are expected to top that total by themselves on Saturday, but defenses at Iowa State, Texas Tech and Texas hope to keep the points down in their games.


CHECK THE STATS

A couple of national writers took small shots at the schedules some Big 12 schools this week. Perhaps, before doing so, they should have checked strength of schedule stats.Every Big 12 team is in the top 15 of the FBS for toughest schedule - including the top five spots.

Before anyone writes in, yes , i understand that the snarkiness was probably directed at the non-conference portion of some teams' schedules. You'd think, though, that people who write about college sports for a living would understand that you can't schedule toguh teams every week, and that teams in leagues like the the Big 12 and SEC can't overschedule themselves. Or maybe we're expecting too much.

Those writers also failed to note this: The Big 12 is 5-1 against non-conference BCS teams this season - one of only two leagues with a winning record against BCS squads.


NO KICKS\No RETURNS

West Virginia has attempted just one field goal through three games this year. Every other Big 12 teams has tried at least four.

Oklahoma State has kicked off 30 times this year. Twenty-five of them have not been returned.


SOLID JOB

BIg 12 officials have earned notice for their willingness to let players play and keep games moving. They also have been very accurate so far this year. According to conference statistics, Big 12 crews have had just 34 plays revies so far in 2012, and only nine of them resulted in an overturn. The replay crews have also been efficient -- they have taken an average of just 1:27 to render a decision and communicate it to the field.


PICKS

Oklahoma, Kansas and Kansas State have off weeks, but three league games make for some interesting selections as Big 12 action begins to heat up. Anyone have a hint on the Texas Tech - iowa State game?

  • Baylor at West Virginia promises to be an entertaining shootout. THe team that musters a bit of defense could have the advantage, and WVU has shown the ability to get extra possessions and points via turnovers. The Mountaineers are the narrowest of picks.

  • Texas Tech has racked up points against three substandard foes. The Red Raiders figure to have a tougher time against Iowa State, but can the Cyclones score enough to match? This is the toughest pick of the season thus far, so the home team gets the nod. Call it Iowa State by a point.

  • Oklahoma State hosts Texas, but that's the only decided advantage for the Cowboys. The Longhorns' running game, defense and better health prove decisive.

  • TCU travels to SMU for the Initial Bowl. The Mustangs have some talent, but not enough to sneak up on the Horned Frogs.


    BAYLOR
    (3-0, 0-0)
    at West Virginia
    Sat 9/29
    12:00 E / 11:00 C
    FX
  • Baylor posted 549 yards of offense against UL-Monroe, its ninth consecutive game with more than 500.

  • The Bears are ranked in both the coaches' (No. 24) and media (No. 25) polls. Baylor has been ranked in the top 25 three straight years for the fi rst time since 1974-76.

  • Sirius/XM: 91/91

  • IOWA STATE
    (3-0, 0-0)
    vs. Texas Tech
    Sat 9/29
    7:00 E \ 6:00 C
    FCS
  • Iowa State has held consecutive opponents without a touchdown for the fi rst time since the 1964 fi nale and 1965 opener.

  • The Cyclones have started 3-0 in consecutive seasons for the sixth time in school history and the fi rst since 2000-01.

  • Sirius/XM: 128/197

  • KANSAS
    (1-3, 0-1)
    Open Date
    Next Game
    Sat 10/6
    at Kansas State
  • Junior CB Tyler Patmon returned an interception 54 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter, marking KU's fi rst INT return for a touchdown since the Missouri game last season.

  • The Jayhawks have forced 13 turnovers this season, tied for second nationally.

  • Sirius/XM: NA

  • KANSAS STATE
    (4-0, 1-0)
    Open Date
    Next Game
    Sat 10/6
    vs. Kansas
  • Saturday's win at Oklahoma was the highest ranked team K-State had ever defeated on the road. It was the Wildcats' fi rst win in Norman since 1997.

  • Quarterback Collin Klein has 32 rushing touchdowns since the beginning of last season, which is tops nationally among active quarterbacks.

  • Sirius/XM: NA

  • OKLAHOMA
    (2-1, 0-1)
    Open Date
    Next Game
    Sat 10/6
    at Texas Tech
  • Dating back to 2004, the Sooners are 18-0 in games immediately following a regular season loss. OU hasn't lost consecutive games in the same season since the fi nal two contests of the 2003 season.

  • Oklahoma held K-State to its fi rst scoreless quarter of the season, breaking a streak of 12-straight quarters with at least one score by the Wildcats.

  • Sirius/XM: NA

  • OKLAHOMA STATE
    (2-1, 0-0)
    vs. Texas
    Sat 9/29
    7:30 E / 6:30 C
    FOX
  • Oklahoma State enters the Texas contest with a nine-game winning streak against Big 12 members from the state of Texas dating back to 2009.

  • OSU is one of only three schools yet to allow a sack in 2012. The Cowboys are also tied for the NCAA lead in red zone scoring thanks to points on every opportunity this season.

  • Sirius/XM: 85/85

  • TEXAS
    (3-0, 0-0)
    at Oklahoma St
    Sat 9/29
    7:30 E / 6:30 C
    FOX
  • Texas opens Big 12 play at Oklahoma State Saturday. The Longhorns have lost their last two games with the Cowboys and both were in Austin. During Big 12 play, Texas has lost only once in Stillwater (1997).

  • Texas has won 35 of its last 42 true Big 12 road games. The Horns are 39-9 in league road contests under Mack Brown.

  • Sirius/XM: 117/202

  • TCU
    (3-0, 1-0)
    at SMU
    Sat 9/29
    7:00 E / 6:00 C
    FSN
  • With their 27-7 win over Virginia, the Horned Frogs improved to 80-2 when allowing 17 points or less under Gary Patterson.

  • TCU threw for 300 or more yards in consecutive games for the fi rst time since the opening two contests of the 2004 season. In all three games this season, TCU has more passing yards than rushing yards.

  • Sirius/XM: 112/None

  • TEXAS TECH
    (3-0, 0-0)
    at Iowa State
    Sat 9/29
    7:00 E \ 6:00 C
    FCS
  • Texas Tech enters Saturday's game at Iowa State as the only team in the nation to rank in the Top 10 in both total offense and total defense. The Red Raider defense is No. 1 nationally while the offense is No. 2.

  • Texas Tech opens conference play on the road for the sixth time in the last seven seasons and 13th overall. The Red Raiders have managed a 10-6 record in Big 12 openers.

  • Sirius/XM: 128/197

  • WEST VIRGINIA
    (3-0, 0-0)
    vs. Baylor
    Sat 9/29
    12:00 E / 11:00 C
    FX
  • Since 2000, West Virginia is 78-3 when scoring 30 or more points. The Mountaineers have won 93 of their last 122 regular-season contests.

  • Tavon Austin's 13 receptions against Maryland matched a school record. The senior became WVU's career receptions leader, ending the day with 208.

  • Sirius/XM: 91/91
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