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Big 12 Football Preview - Week Two

A Top 25 match-up and an in-state showdown for bragging rights highlights the second week of the Big 12 football season. All ten league teams are in action on Saturday, with start times ranging across an eight hour timespan (Noon-8:00 Eastern, 11:00-7:00 Central).

THE NOTES

  • The Backyard Brawl is back...sorta. WVU will face Pitt in a four-game series, but it doesn't begin until 2022.
  • The Big 12’s 8-2 opening week record is its best since going undefeated in 2012. Four of the league's ten openers were played on the road.
  • What the Kansas State band actually formed in their halftime show against South Dakota is open to interpretation. What isn't is the fact that the group, despite the lame protests from the band director and president, certainly did intend to aim disrespect at Kansas with the show. When a performance includes the mascot of a team you aren't even playing, you are taking a direct shot at them. Whether that's o.k. or acceptable in college sports is, again, in the eye of the beholder, but don't insult our intelligence by saying no disrespect was intended. What was it, a tribute?
  • And speaking of bands, how shabby is it that Texas will charge each Texas Tech band member $50 to attend their game this year? Apparently an athletic budget larger than the GDP of some countries isn't enough for the Excess in Austin.
  • Iowa State set a new stadium attendance record of 61,500 for the Northern Iowa opener. The Cyclones added a new end zone seating area in the offseason.
  • Baylor QB Seth Russell tied a school game record with six TDs (five passing, one rushing) in the Bears' opening day win. That doesn't make him the equal of Bryce Petty just yet, but it's an impressive start. Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield carved his own place in the school record books with a single-game record of 388 passing yards.
  • Despite the school's rushing heritage, is it weird that the Sooners have never had a QB pass for 400 yards in a game?
  • Texas Tech looked good in some areas in its 59-45 win over Sam Houston State, but yielding 637 yards, even in the Big 12, isn't a recipe for success.

THE PICKS

  • Kansas State goes to its backup QB after falling into the mess of injuries that defined week one of the college football season. It must travel to UTSA, which played quite creditably in a loss to Arizona. Bill Snyder is the league's best coach, but the Roadrunners are the pick to win in an upset.
  • The Miners kept it close last year at home against Texas Tech, but the Red Raiders appear to have picked things up a notch in 2015. Tech holds on to the ... wait, there's no traveling trophy for this game? There should be, and it should be dust-covered.
  • West Virginia will be hard-pressed to record another shutout, but it figures to run its record to 2-0 with a win over Liberty.
  • TCU is being downgraded a bit in some circles after a somewhat desultory win in its opener. Basing too much on the outcome of one game is never wise, and the Horned Frogs show why as they blast the Lumberjacks.
  • Iowa State raised hopes in Ames with a solid win over Northern Iowa. That carries over this week as it claims the CyHawk Trophy with a home win over Iowa.
  • Oklahoma and Tennessee meet in the feature game of the week. Both schools have been more hat than cattle recently, but the Sooners have more talent. Even on the road, OU is the pick to get the win.
  • Kansas hosts Memphis, hoping to shake off the ugly ending of last week's loss to South Dakota State. While the Jayhawks might play better, it won't be enough against a solid Tiger squad that again has an eye on a double-digit win season.
  • Baylor hosts Lamar in the cover-your-eyes-awful game of the week. Embarrassing -- and not for the Cardinals, although the score could get ugly. In the words of Gomer Pyle, "Shame, shame!"
  • Oklahoma State will be watching the K-State - UTSA game, as the Cowboys host the Roadrunners next week. Any potential distractions won't make a difference against Central Arkansas on Saturday night, as OSU will roll.
  • Based on Texas' week one result, it might not be outlandish to select Rice. However, UT has to be plenty steamed after getting fried by Notre Dame, and that means a sticky situation for the Owls.

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