Last week: 3-1
Season: 56-16 (.777)
ESPN’s David Ubben: 54-18 (.750)
I stayed two games ahead of Ubben this week, as both of us picked Texas A&M over Texas. Oops.
The three matchups this week aren’t easy. This is my final “Big 12 Predictions” post of the season. My next predictions post will be for all the bowl games, probably in a week or two.
Kansas State 31, Iowa State 21 – I can see this game coming down to the wire, and I can also see it being a blowout. On one hand, it’s easy to believe the Wildcats have been distracted by all the bowl talk this week. Combine that with the fact that Iowa State is an underrated team led by an underrated coach, and you have trouble. On the other hand, Bill Snyder expressed extreme displeasure with the way his team played against Texas two weeks ago. He, perhaps more than any other coach, will not settle for anything less than great improvement this week. Which of these two scenarios will it be? I’m leaning toward the first one, just because of the great respect I have for Paul Rhoads and his defense. But a lot of different things can happen here. Don’t say I’m a terrible predictor if the Wildcats win by 24. P.S.: Keep your eye on the weather for this one. A cold rain, which is possible, would keep scoring lower.
Baylor 31, Texas 23 — Picking Baylor over Texas is like criticizing Aaron Rodgers. You don’t get to do it very often, so you have to make it count. In this case, I’m doing it under the assumption that Texas’ offense will return to its unproductive self, but I don’t know if that will happen. If it doesn’t, big trouble for the Bears. I think the Longhorn defense will do a good job against Robert Griffin III (they will slow him down, but not stop him). Overall, I’m placing my faith in Art Briles making sure his team avoids a letdown game. We’ll see.
Oklahoma 38, Oklahoma State 35 — Oh, Bedlam. What would Big 12 football be without you? The 2011 installment doesn’t quite have the implications it did a month ago, but it should still be a classic. I will be rooting for the Cowboys in this game, to be clear, just because it would please me greatly to see Bob Stoops sent to the Alamo Bowl. But I love the Sooners’ defense, and just can’t picture Little Brother OSU beating Big Brother OU in this one. I do think the game will be back and forth, and absolutely think OSU has more than a shot. I just can’t pick it.