stop
One True Champion
Send Mail Print RSS
A Game-By-Game Preview Of This Week's Games
RELATED LINKS
By Wendell Barnhouse | wendell@big12sports.com
Big12Sports.com Correspondent

Two of the three teams with one loss will be in action this week while the one team in control of the Big 12 race will sit, watch and wait for its final game.

Texas, 6-1 in the Conference standings, plays its traditional Thanksgiving game by hosting Texas Tech. Baylor, also 6-1, hopes to bounce back from its first loss of the season by traveling to Fort Worth to take on TCU Saturday.

Oklahoma State (10-1, 6-1) has victories over both the Longhorns and the Bears. The Cowboys close their season on Dec. 7 with their Bedlam game against Oklahoma in Stillwater.

Both Texas and Baylor need to recover after losing to Oklahoma State. The Longhorns' six-game winning streak came to an end on Nov. 16 when the Cowboys visited Austin and left with a 38-13 victory, the most lopsided home loss in the Mack Brown Era.

"These guys haven't given up," senior quarterback Case McCoy said. "Everybody has counted us out but us. We understand that if we win two more ballgames, we're putting numbers on the wall and we're still sharing a Big 12 title."

If Texas ends the season with two victories – it closes the season at Baylor on Dec. 7 – the Longhorns would be assured of no worse than a share of the Big 12 championship.

Texas Tech, which started 7-0 and moved up to No. 10 in the rankings, will try to end a four-game losing streak.

"I just think we've played really good teams in the month of November and they beat us," Texas Tech first-year coach Kliff Kingsbury said. "That's something we have to improve on our team when we play the high-quality teams that we can have better showings."

The Bears, who fell to ninth this week in the rankings face a similar scenario, needing two victories to finish Big 12 play with an 8-1 record and no worse than a share of the title.

Baylor's challenge is recovering from Saturday's 49-17 loss in Stillwater that ended the national championship dreams.

"There's a little bit of somberness," coach Art Briles said during Monday's Big 12 conference call. "Disappointment, I think, is the right word. I certainly don't think we're discouraged at all. We hit a bump in the road and we've got to learn from it, get better and move on."

For the first time in 10 games, Baylor's offense sputtered against Oklahoma State's inspired scheme. The Bears didn't score a touchdown until the fourth quarter and were limited to just +++ yards rushing.

"We're not holding our heads down," quarterback Bryce Petty said. "This is a special team. It's about what you do after the loss that makes you a great team. We still have a lot to play for. There are still goals and ambitions that we can achieve."

Thursday's game
All times Central

Texas Tech at Texas
Need to know: 6:30 p.m., Darrell K. Royal/Memorial Stadium, FS1.
Records: Texas Tech 7-4, 4-4; Texas 7-3, 6-1.

Scouting Texas Tech: During the four-game losing streak, the Red Raiders have been feeble in stopping opponents' running games. They've allowed 18 rushing touchdowns and nearly six yards per attempt. Freshman Baker Mayfield is expected to start at quarterback. Texas Tech leads the nation in passing offense, averaging 400 yards per game.

Scouting Texas: The Longhorns are coming off their lowest point total of the season and hope to get their offense back on track. Senior quarterback Case McCoy led the team on its six-game winning streak, but he has thrown nine interceptions over the last five games. Texas is second in the Big 12 in pass defense and third in sacks.

This and that: Texas Tech last won in Austin in 1997. … The Red Raiders' offensive line has been shuffled by injuries. Freshman Baylen Brown is expected to make his second consecutive start at right guard. … Anthony Fera of Texas has made 17 of 18 field goals and is a finalist for the Groza Award that goes to the nation's top kicker.

Saturday's games
All times Central

Kansas State at Kansas
Need to know: 11 a.m., Memorial Stadium, FS1.
Records: Kansas State 6-5, 4-4; Kansas 3-8, 1-7.

Scouting Kansas State: The Wildcats couldn't stop Oklahoma's running game in last week's loss and that's a concern facing a Kansas team that is a threat when running the ball. K-State wide receiver Tyler Lockett is coming off a record-setting game and he'll be difficult for the Jayhawks' secondary to contain.

Scouting Kansas: Freshman Montell Cozart is listed as the starter on the depth chart released this week but Jayhawks coach Charlie Weis said he wouldn't reveal the starter until game time. If it's Cozart or Heaps, Kansas has struggled in the passing game (140 yards per game). The defense is allowing 32 points per game.

This and that: K-State has won the last four games in this rivalry by the combined score of 191-54. … Wildcats coach Bill Snyder, in his two stints as coach, is 17-4 against Kansas. … The Jayhawks need a victory to avoid going five consecutive seasons with one or fewer Big 12 victories.

Baylor at TCU
Need to know: 2:30 p.m., Amon G. Carter Stadium, ESPN2.
Records: Baylor 9-1; 6-1; TCU 4-7, 2-6.

Scouting Baylor: The Bears hope that Lache Seastrunk and Glasco Martin will be able to play and help bolster the team's running attack. Even with last Saturdays' offensive melt down at Oklahoma State, Baylor still averages 57 points and 661 yards per game. In the loss in Stillwater, the defense missed linebacker Bryce Hager, who is trying to recover from a hamstring injury.

Scouting TCU: The Horned Frogs will treat this as their bowl game. TCU has played well in its last three games but only has one victory to show for it. Quarterback Casey Pachall will close out his career; the passing game has been improving over the last few games. TCU leads the Big 12 in rushing defense and slowing the Baylor ground game will be a key factor.

This and that: Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty attempted a season-high 48 passes against Oklahoma State. … Baylor senior offensive tackle Cyril Richardson is one of three finalists for the Outland Trophy which honors the best lineman in college football. … Senior running back Waymon James, who started seven games, is no longer listed on TCU's roster.

Iowa State at West Virginia
Need to know: 3 p.m., Milan Puskar Stadium, FS1.
Records: Iowa State 2-9, 1-7; West Virginia 4-7, 2-6.

Scouting Iowa State: Redshirt freshman Grant Rohach is coming off his best game. Coach Paul Rhoads said this week Rohach will be the No. 1 QB going into spring practice. The Cyclones are coming off their most complete performance this season. Senior linebacker Jeremiah George leads the Big 12 in tackles.

Scouting West Virginia: The Mountaineers, who aren't going bowling for the first time since 2001, want to close out a disappointing season with a victory. The starting quarterback will either be Clint Trickett or Paul Millard. The offense has displayed flashes but the defense has been struggling because of injuries.

This and that: Iowa State's  34-0 win over Kansas was the first shutout by a Big 12 team in league play since Oct. 29, 2011 when Texas beat KU, 43-0. … Iowa State's Grant Rohach has passed for 877 yards and four touchdowns in six games. … West Virginia running back Charles Sims needs 54 yards rushing to become West Virginia's first 1,000-yard rusher since 2009.

< Football
Popular on Big12Sports.com
Load More