Big 12 game predictions- Week 13

by Dan M | Posted on Saturday, November 25th, 2017

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Texas Tech (5-5) at Texas (6-5)
Line: Longhorns -10 / 55
TV: Friday, 7:00, FOX
Unlike the last few seasons, there’s no stress for Texas.
It’s been an okay first season under Tom Herman, and now that
the team secured bowl eligibility with a great win over West Virginia,
it’s gravy time.
However, it would stink to lose at home to Texas Tech.
The pressure will come next year. Really, these Longhorns
should’ve made more noise in the Big 12 title chase, but close losses
to Oklahoma and Oklahoma State ruined that. Again, it’s all fine in
Year One, but lose to the Red Raiders, and Texas fans will be a bit
grouchy.
You don’t want grouchy Texas fans going into the offseason.
Win, and the potential is there for an eight-win run with a
boatload of expectations for 2018.
Texas Tech, though, has to win or that’s it.
Losers of five of their last six games and with only the free
space conference wins over Kansas and Baylor to get excited about,
beating Texas to become bowl eligible would make the season.
Unlike last year, the Texas defense has been a rock at times.
Fantastic on third downs, there’s a solid pass rush, the run defense
is the eighth-best in the country, and the secondary has been among
the best in the conference at times.
That’s a bad thing for a Texas Tech offense that suffered a power
outage against TCU last week.
The big issue? The Red Raiders can’t put the biscuit in the
basket, truckling way, way, way too much in the red zone. It lost to
Kansas State because it managed to score just once on three trips
inside the 20, and it scored just one of four times in against TCU
when it got deep.
The Texas D is fantastic at not breaking – it’s 27th in the
nation in red zone D.
If Nic Shimonek and the passing game aren’t rolling, they’re
going to need easy points.
The Red Raider D needs to have one of its crazy takeaway games.
Texas has been relatively careful with the ball, when Tech is
able to come up with fumbles and make things happen, it wins.
The team is 4-0 this season when forcing four takeaways and it’s
only been on the negative side of the turnover margin twice. The
turnovers might have slowed for the Longhorns, but they’ve given it up
two times or more four times.
There won’t be anything scintillating about what Texas will do.
It’ll play great defense. it’ll come up with a decent day on the
ground, and the quarterbacks will be effective enough to keep the Sam
Ehlinger vs. Shane Beuchele argument going.
But winning will look pretty to Longhorn fans no matter how it
happens. It’s been three years since Texas won a home finale.
Ready for crazy? Since playing for the national title in 2009,
Texas has lost six of its last seven home finales.
But things are different now under Herman.
Pick: Texas 27, Texas Tech 13

Baylor (1-10) at #12 TCU (9-2)
Line: Horned Frogs -24.5 / 51.5
TV: Friday, 11:00am / FS1
It was the first big brouhaha of the College Football Playoff era.
Baylor should’ve been in the first CFP because it was the “One
True Champion” of the Big 12. TCU should’ve been in because it
overcame the crazy 61-58 loss on the road to the Bears to rolling the
rest of the way in a dominant run.
Of course, neither one made it in, and now both programs are in very,
very different places.
Baylor is in a total rebuild mode under first year head man Matt
Rhule, trying to rebuild from the aftermath of the Art Briles disaster
and get the program back to among the conference elite.
TCU is trying to win the Big 12 Championship.
Still a bit on the outside of the puzzle, TCU needs to roll this
week, rip through Oklahoma in the Big 12 title game, and hope for a
little bit of help. But there’s a path to get in, and it starts with a
dominant performance.
Pick: TCU 38, Baylor 13

Kansas (1-10) at #19 Oklahoma St. (8-3)
Line: Cowboys -41 / 70
TV: Saturday, 11:00am, FS1
Well that ended that.
Oklahoma State’s loss to Kansas State crushed the dream of
getting another shot at Oklahoma with the Big 12 Championship and a
possible chance at the CFP on the line. Mason Rudolph and company made
it fun late, but it was too big a hill to climb.
Now the Cowboys can claim the No. 3 spot in the Big 12 pecking
order, which doesn’t mean anything other than the honor of being the
best of the rest.
Kansas would like to be be the best of anything other than being
the worst Power Five team in college football.
It’s not just that the Jayhawks aren’t winning; they’re not
having any fun whatsoever. And now they’re being jerky – not shaking
hands with Baker Mayfield to start the OU game last week, and with a
few late pops.
Obviously a win would make the season, but the Cowboys might be a
wee bit pumped up to do something massive after last week’s disaster.
This will be a light scrimmage against a miserable team.
There might be a shot at an OSU letdown if this was on the road,
but not on Senior Day, not at home, and not with a ten-win season
still a possibility.
Rudolph and the passing game will put on a show.
Pick: Oklahoma State 52, Kansas 17

Iowa State (7-4) at Kansas State (6-5)
Line: Wildcats -3 / 49.5
TV: 2:30, ESPN2
There’s no drama. There’s no pressure. It’s just a game between
two bowl bound teams shooting for a better record.
Kansas State managed to shock Oklahoma State with a brilliant
performance to get to six wins and bowl eligibility. Winners of three
of their last four games, the Wildcats were able to overcome a rocky
stretch, and a quarterback injury issue, to come up with a solid year.
Iowa State continues to be the Big 12’s big shocker, getting past two
close dogfights losses to beat Baylor and keep hopes alive for a
nine-win season.
Montgomery will give it a go for the Cyclones, the passing game
will be efficient, and the defense will do the rest.
Iowa State will out-Kansas State, K- State.
The Cyclones don’t turn the ball over enough for K-State – they
have yet to lose a fumble – they don’t have penalty problems, and
they’re great at coming up with the right defensive plays at the right
times.
It’ll be a great battle with Iowa State doing just a wee bit more
defensively in the second half, coming up with third down stop after
third down stop.
Pick: Iowa State 35 K-State 30

West Virginia(7-4) at #4Oklahoma (10-1)
Line: Sooners -22.5 / 68
TV: 2:45, ESPN
The Sooners can’t slip now.
West Virginia was deep in the hunt for the Big 12 title, but a
loss to Texas last week ended all of that. The Mountaineers are going
bowling, and they should get a decent post-season slot, but a win over
Oklahoma would take the season to a whole other level.
The Sooners are off to the Big 12 Championship next week against
TCU, needing to win this week and in the rematch against the Horned
Frogs to get into the College Football Playoff – and yes, OU is going
to the CFP at 12-1 with a Power Five championship.
But can the Mountaineers somehow pull off something special
without their star? They’ve been entertaining, and they beat an Iowa
State team that beat Oklahoma, but …
West Virginia, just shake Mayfield’s hand and get it over with.
The Sooners will get hit with a strong start from the fired up
Mountaineers who’ll come out hot, even without Grier. But Mayfield
will be Mayfield as the OU offense takes over in the second quarter –
and WVU won’t be able to keep up.
Mayfield already has the Heisman locked up. Now, in his final home
game, he’ll throw away the key.
Pick: Oklahoma 41, West Virginia 23

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