Welcome back to “What We Learned”, the series where I explain one thing we learned in the previous week about each team in the Big 12. The teams are ordered based on record, so if your team is talked about first it’s not because I hate them, it’s because they’re bad and deserve to be shunned.
IOWA STATE (1-6)
Iowa State had a bye this week. They host Kansas State this Saturday.
Another week, another tough loss for Kansas. The Jayhawks led late in the first half before allowing a touchdown, which eventually led to halftime deficit of 17-13. Oklahoma State struck first in the second half, and if Kansas would have prevented the 15-yard Mason Rudolph to Chris Carson touchdown pass the final score could have been very different. Kansas responded with a really nice drive, but it would be their last points on the day as it was all Oklahoma State from there.
Kansas sits at a disappointing but somewhat expected 1-6. Montell Cozart got the start and was actually pretty good, as he completed more than half of his passes for a touchdown and 250 yards, and even with a few badly missed passes, he looked like the best option for the future, and David Beaty will likely stick with him as he tries to get some momentum going from this year.
Charlie Strong’s fate was almost certainly sealed this week, as Texas dropped their 4th game in five tries in a 24-21 loss to Kansas State. The game wasn’t as close as the score indicated, as a last-minute Texas score made it look a little better.
You get a better view of the game when looking in the stats, most importantly, the 234 rushing yards Texas allowed and the big 0 in the TD column when looking at D’Onta Foreman’s stats. Kansas State had 3 turnovers and Texas still couldn’t find a way to win. The total yards were pretty close, though Kansas State held the ball for nearly 20 more minutes than Texas did. You can’t win if you don’t have the ball, and you can’t coach at Texas if you can’t win, so Charlie Strong will be trusting the process somewhere else next year.
TEXAS TECH (3-4)
Do you like football games in which no yard or score records are safe? Great, us too. 1708 total combined yards (NCAA record). Baker Mayfield threw for 7 touchdowns (school record) and 545 yards which was somehow topped by the robot on the other side, Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes threw for 734 yards (NCAA record) and 5 touchdowns.
This happened in a real football game where large humans were attempting (this is key) to stop the quarterback from breaking every record he wanted to. Both defenses just kind of gave up almost as soon as the game started.
Patrick Mahomes threw 88 times. 88. On 88 attempts, just one was an interception. That’s a combination of extreme arm talent, and someone turning all the defense sliders to 0 before the game. Texas Tech almost won this game by just completely ignoring Oklahoma, and honestly, I respect that. If you’re gonna get dumped, you might as well commits some crimes against defense first.
In related news, an NFL game finished 6-6 after 75 minutes last night. Why would you ever watch anything but college football?
Every Big 12 team located in Texas was dumped this weekend. This includes TCU, who tried and failed horribly in their upset attempt in Morgantown. I honestly thought TCU would win this game, and thankfully the blog police were merciful, leaving me with just a hefty fee, instead of revoking my blogging license entirely for my terrible takes.
West Virginia was impressive and TCU wasn’t and a 34-10 loss for TCU, where all 10 points came in the first half, proved that West Virginia is better, and TCU may be in trouble this year. TCU had 3 turnovers and just couldn’t get going all day, while West Virginia struggled a bit early, but soon figured out the TCU defense.
KANSAS STATE (4-3)
One of my favorite college football thing is people calling a quarterback’s performance “gutty” when he played well when the game was close, even though he was almost certainly a huge reason that the game was close. This happens a lot with Jesse Ertz, and it happened again this week, after a ‘gutty’ 171 yard 1 score and 1 pick performance. Admittedly, it’s important to have a good leader when the game is close, but Kansas State had just 3 points in the second half, that came early in the 3rd quarter, so Jesse Ertz didn’t really do much of anything at the end of the game. Despite Ertz, the running game stepped up and the defense held at the end, in what was a must win game for Kansas State.
OKLAHOMA STATE (5-2)
Firstly, why in the world is Oklahoma State not ranked in the AP poll? Was the Central Michigan loss so unforgivable that the Cowboys have been blacklisted by everyone who has a vote for the remainder of the year? Probably. Oklahoma State keeps winning, and even if they struggled with Kansas for a half, they eventually took care of the Jayhawks, as they now look to one of the biggest Big 12 games off the year, they host the undefeated West Virginia Mountaineers this Saturday.
There was a point during the Texas Tech vs Oklahoma game Saturday night where I had to change the channel, not because I was watching something else, but because I couldn’t physically register the amount of points that were being put up on both side. The inability to accept ludicrous amount of points is probably not a great problem for a Big 12 blogger to have, but here we are. I eventually moved past my deep fear of the chaos that comes with watching two teams completely forget to play defense, and the second half of this game was the best I’ve seen this season.
Texas Tech had 35 second-half points, Oklahoma had 36. The Sooners scored on every single second half possession they had, except for the last one when time ran out. Baker Mayfield had an incredible 98.9 QBR, out of a possible 100. Oklahoma proved once again that they’re one of the Big 12’s best, though Houston and Ohio State both taking bad losses doesn’t help the Sooners chase for a NY6 bowl.
WEST VIRGINIA (6-0)
It took six games, but I finally think West Virginia is for real. They dominated TCU for almost the whole game on Saturday, and answered quite a few questions many people had about them. West Virginia got their first signature win of the year, and Skyler Howard finally proved himself as a top Big 12 quarterback, with a 4 score, 231 yard performance. West Virginia was obviously the better team on Saturday, and while I still think Baylor is better, a big win in Stillwater would give West Virginia a huge gain in polls and in respect.
Baylor had a bye this week. They travel to Austin this Saturday.