It’s a limited slate of action in the Big 12 this weekend with just three games on the slate. You would think that would make things a little easier to rank but that’s definitely not the case. There’s a clear top game in the conference this weekend but #2 and #3 are practically interchangeable because the outcomes could put teams on the brink of elimination in the conference championship hunt.
3. West Virginia At Baylor
|11:00 AM||FS1||Baylor -3||44|
Despite last week’s loss at Oklahoma State, Baylor still very much controls its own destiny in the Big 12 championship race. Getting a huge win over Iowa State two weeks ago was paramount towards the hopes and aspirations of the Bears and win this weekend over the Mountaineers would get them back on track.
None of that is true for West Virginia. Neal Brown may be the Big 12 coach who is feeling the most pressure right now and a loss in Waco would only amplify that. The Mountaineers are off to an 0-2 start in conference play and a third loss would more than likely bury their chances of making it to the title game.
West Virginia Player to Watch: Jarret Doege (1,207 passing yards, 7 TDs)
Baylor Player to Watch: Abram Smith (510 rushing yards, 6 TDs)
TCU At Texas Tech
|6:00 PM||ESPN||TCU -2||60.5|
This has all of the makings to be a really good game! Both teams are still very much in the hunt and both teams need to win. I would expect a high scoring affair here as both TCU and Texas Tech are averaging over 35 points per game this season and both defenses have had moments of struggle.
The Red Raiders picked up a huge win in Morgantown last weekend despite the absence of starting quarterback Tyler Shough who suffered a broken collarbone against Texas. Tech will continue to use the balance of Henry Colombi (an experienced quarterback in his own right) and a trio of running backs to attack the TCU defense.
For the Horned Frogs it’s all about how many touches Gary Patterson allows Zach Evans to have. He’s averaged 7.5 yards per carry in each of the last two games but Patterson has limited him to just 15 carries both times. He may have to up that number in order to remain competitive on the road.
TCU Player to Watch: Zach Evans (443 rushing yards, 3 TDs)
Texas Tech Player to Watch: Erik Ezukanma (406 receiving yards, 1 TD)
#6 Oklahoma vs. #21 Texas
|11:00 AM||ABC||OU -3||63.5|
The Red River Rivalry! Even if the two teams weren’t ranked this could still be the top game in the conference. It isn’t just position in the Big 12 pecking order that’s at stake here, it’s national rankings, pride, envy, hate, and bragging rights all on the line at the Cotton Bowl.
This game will be strength on strength as Bijan Robinson and the powerful Texas rushing attack run right into the teeth of Oklahoma’s dominating defensive front. The Longhorns are averaging 268.6 rushing yards per game and the Sooners are only giving up 83.6 rushing yards to their opponents on average. This battle right here could very well be the determining factor in who wins this game.
Oklahoma Player to Watch: Spencer Rattler (1,260 passing yards, 10 TDs)
Texas Player to Watch: Bijan Robinson (652 rushing yards, 7 TDs)
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