Wall's World...Week Nine

Technically, Iowa State can still make a bowl. I just wanted to put that out there. It could still happen and just might. So let's all move off the ledge and calm down. Did we really expect a different record at this point?

Iowa, as much as we as Cyclone fans are contractually supposed to deny, is a good team, Texas is a national champion contender, Oklahoma was a legitimate top-10 team when they played Iowa State and Nebraska is on the way back up. So should we really be that disappointed? Iowa State has lost five games to five really good teams. All I'm saying is that this was predicted and almost expected when the season began.


I know what you're going to say right now and I'll beat you to it. It's the way Iowa State lost those games that has fans angry. The same mistakes over and over again, the inconsistent offense that has scored more then 20 points only three times this season, the defense that at times couldn't stop Ames High. I know what you're saying and I agree with you. In their five losses the Cyclones have only been maybe two of them. That's what has Cyclone Nation riled up.


So, that being said, let's get on to the picks.


Iowa State at Kansas State


This is a must win for both teams. Iowa State has zero Big 12 wins while the Wildcats have just one. With four wins right now, K State needs this win if they want to make a bowl with Colorado, Texas and Kansas remaining. Only Kansas looks like a win, because Colorado has a strong defense and the Wildcats don't really show up on offense. They need this if six wins is to be reached.


Same situation for the Cyclones. Iowa State must win three of their last four games to become bowl eligible, even though those six wins don't automatically guarantee them a postseason birth. They've had a midseason turnaround the past two years and there isn't any reason they can't do it again. But if they want to turn it around, it has to start now. If the Cyclones lose to the Wildcats, the boos will get louder and the seats in Jack Trice Stadium will get emptier. Kansas State doesn't play offense well and their defense has struggled. The Cyclones have to get it done this week or their season might be over.


THE PICK: Iowa State


Texas at Texas Tech


Cyclone fans saw how good Texas was a few weeks back, and saw how actually bad Tech was just last weekend. Anything Iowa State did was given to them by the Red Raiders. They had 14 penalties, including five personal fouls. They also had a couple fumbles that kept Iowa State in the game. That's a bad Tech team. Very bad.  


Texas, on the other hand, is really good. They are fifth in the nation, and for some reason unknown to me, seventh in the BCS. But I don't count the BCS system as legitimate. I have never seen a computer that can see a game, so I don't understand how a computer can rank teams. It's like my television judging in a taste test. It just doesn't work. Texas will continue to roll through their schedule, sitting back and praying that only one team ends the year unbeaten.




Oklahoma at Missouri


This should have had the markings of a monumental game. Oklahoma has one Big 12 loss and still has a fighting (although almost entirely unlikely) chance of winning the South. Missouri also only has one conference loss and is locked with Nebraska in a two-team race for the North. This should have been a pivotal, season defining game. Then Adrian Peterson got hurt. The Sooners were able to get past Colorado, just because the Buffalos are bad this season. But Missouri isn't.


Against a strong defense like Missouri's, the Oklahoma game plan will struggle. The Tigers can stop the Sooner run game, forcing quarterback Paul Thompson to run the show. He can't do that against Missouri. The Tigers will stop the Sooner offense and Missouri signal caller Chase Daniel has a very bright future. This will be a huge win for the North, who hasn't beaten the Sooners in a regular season game since Nebraska beat them in 2001.


Texas' last regular season loss to a North team was to Kansas State in 1999. Those two teams have been really, really good.


THE PICK: Missouri


Nebraska at Oklahoma State


What do you say about this game? Nebraska is a legitimate top-20 team and is well on their way to their first Big 12 Championship game since beating Texas in 1999. They have a powerful, balanced offense and a stingy defense.


Oklahoma State has none of these. This game will be a blowout. I'm putting the over/under on Husker points scored at 37 and taking the over.


THE PICK: Nebraska


Texas A&M at Baylor


Even though Texas A&M is ranked, this could turn out to be a pretty good game. Baylor has been scoring big points, coming from way back to beat Kansas and scoring 31 against Texas. This offense can score in bunches, and if they get in a shootout with A&M there could be an upset. The Aggies took out Missouri, but they haven't beaten anyone else of consequence and their lone loss is to a Texas Tech team that we know is pretty bad. A&M's pass defense is better then last season, but not by a whole lot.




THE PICK: Baylor


Colorado at Kansas


A loss here would all but eliminate Kansas from returning to a bowl game. Have fun at home Jayhawks. Colorado is getting better as the season goes on, and they get a huge road win here. After the game Mark Mangino gets so angry he goes and cleans out a Denny's.


THE PICK: Colorado


Here's a new segment I'm going to implement. Now that the season is more then half over, I think it's time for me to chime in with my ranking of the Big 12. We'll pretend there is only one division and I'll rank all the teams 1-12. Who knows? It could be fun.


1. Texas

2. Nebraska

3. Missouri

4. Texas A&M

5. Oklahoma

6. Texas Tech

7. Baylor

8. Kansas State

9. Iowa State

10. Oklahoma State

11. Kansas

12. Colorado

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