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Big 12 football: Predictions, superlatives after Week 5

A ranked Big 12 team loses for the second straight week and more.

NCAA Football: Texas Christian at Baylor Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

A ranked Big-12 team lost for the second straight week and Iowa State’s struggles continued in week five. That means another shake-up in my power rankings. Let’s recap Week 5 and preview Week 6 in the Big 12.

Standings

No. 6 Oklahoma Sooners (4-0, 1-0)

No. 11 Texas Longhorns (3-1, 1-0)

No. 21 Oklahoma State Cowboys (4-1, 1-1)

Baylor Bears (4-0, 1-0)

Kansas State Wildcats (3-1, 0-1)

TCU Horned Frogs (3-1, 1-0)

Iowa State Cyclones (2-2, 0-1)

West Virginia Mountaineers (3-1, 1-0)

Texas Tech Red Raiders (2-2, 0-1)

Kansas Jayhawks (2-3, 0-2)

Oklahoma State replaced Kansas State in the top-25 at No. 21 this week and move up to third in the power rankings. Iowa State slides to its lowest point of the season after a loss at Baylor.

No. 6 OU

Another week and another blowout for Oklahoma. Jalen Hurts day ended early and Hurts made up for it in the weight room once again. Before exiting, Hurts threw for 415 yards, three touchdowns and an interception. CeeDee Lamb and Charleston Rambo each had over 100 yards receiving and Lamb caught all three of Hurts’ touchdown passes.

OU rolled over Texas Tech just as everyone expected and it will be more of the same this weekend when Oklahoma travels north to Lawrence to take on Kansas. The Sooners should win big and improve to 5-0 on the season before playing Texas in their first real test the following week.

Prediction: Oklahoma wins big.

No. 11 Texas

Texas hasn’t played since it beat OSU and the Longhorns needed the rest. The Longhorn defense is still banged up from the OSU game and several key players are out the next several weeks.

Texas gets West Virginia this weekend in what should be a fairly easy win. Even if the defense doesn’t play well, WVU likely won’t be able to keep up with the Texas offense. The same theory won’t hold up when Texas takes on OU the following week, so the defense will want to have a good game heading into the Red River Rivalry.

Prediction: Texas wins comfortably.

No. 21 OSU

Speaking of defense, the Cowboy defense played their best game in years against Kansas State this past weekend. The Wildcats rattled off 10 straight points off consecutive interceptions thrown by Spencer Sanders, but outside of that stretch, it was a dominating win for the Cowboys.

Sanders did throw two picks but also passed for 153 yards and a touchdown. Tylan Wallace caught eight passes for 145 yards while no other receiver had more than seven yards. Chuba Hubbard was the offensive star of the night, rushing for 296 yards and a score on just 25 carries.

Oklahoma State will travel to Lubbock to take on Texas Tech this weekend. The Cowboys have won nine of their last 10 against Texas Tech with the one loss coming last year. Tech will be without starting quarterback Alan Bowman. The Red Raiders used two quarterbacks against OU last weekend, playing Jett Duffey more out of the two. Duffey started several games for Tech last year when Bowman was hurt.

OSU should have no problem against Texas Tech. The Cowboys are used to winning in Lubbock and Mike Gundy should continue his reign of terror on coaches in their first year with a new school.

Prediction: OSU wins comfortably.

Baylor

Baylor improved to 4-0 over the weekend with a win over a struggling ISU team. Baylor saw a 20-0 fourth quarter lead evaporate as the Bears trailed 21-20 late in the game. Freshman John Mayers was brought on to attempt the game winning field goal and he lifted Baylor to a 23-21 win over ISU.

Charlie Brewer threw three touchdown passes and had 307 passing yards for the day. Brewer and ISU quarterback Brock Purdy finished with identical 53.2 QBR’s. Tyquan Thornton led in receiving with 141 yards and a touchdown while Denzel Mims had 106 yards and two scores.

Baylor is off to a good start but has plenty of tough opponents left on the schedule. The Bears travel north to play Kansas State next weekend. After losing to OSU and falling out of the AP top-25, this game will be a must win for KSU. The Wildcats don’t want to start 0-2 in Big 12 play with OU and Texas ahead of them. The Baylor offense has more playmakers and that will be the difference in this game.

Prediction: Baylor wins a close one.

Kansas State

Like TCU the week before, KSU only stuck around in the top-25 for one week. The Wildcats opened Big 12 play in Stillwater and was absolutely dominated on offense. KSU struggled to run the ball against the OSU defense and scored 10 of its 13 points after the defense forced a turnover.

The defense is clearly the strength of this team and it wasn’t enough to beat OSU. James Gilbert was only able to rush for 44 yards and a late score. Skylar Thompson passed for 118 yards. The Wildcats only had eight first downs and 244 yards for the entire game. To compare, Hubbard rushed for 296 yards by himself.

This offense needs to figure out how to move the ball quickly. The performance against OSU was especially uninspiring coming off a bye week. Now KSU hosts Baylor in a must win game this weekend to stay in Big 12 contention.

Prediction: Baylor wins a close game.

TCU

I thought Kansas might have a shot to hang around with a dysfunctional TCU offense and I was completely wrong. Once again TCU went back to a two quarterback system with Alex Delton and Max Duggan. The result was a dominating 51-14 win.

Delton attempted more passes, completing 10 of his 15 for 186 yards. Duggan completed eight of 11 for 100 yards and two touchdowns. Darius Anderson led TCU in rushing with 115 yards and a score. Freshman Daimarqua Foster followed with 66 yards and a score while fellow freshman Darwin Barlow rushed for 51 yards. The Frogs were unable to get Jalen Reagor involved in the passing game, but he did return a punt for a touchdown.

Next week TCU travels to Ames to take on ISU. The Cyclones are off to a disappointing 2-2 start, losing both games by a combined three points. This should be a fairly even matchup, but I am giving ISU the edge because they are playing at home and in a must win game to stay in Big 12 contention.

ISU

ISU’s offense couldn’t get anything going until the fourth quarter, where the Cyclones erupted for 21 points to take a late one point lead. Baylor would eventually kick a game winning field goal. Had the ISU offense scored at all before the fourth quarter, the Cyclones likely come out with a win.

Brock Purdy passed for 342 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. Iowa State’s leading rushed only had six carries for 35 yards and a score. Meanwhile, Purdy attempted 45 passes.

Next week Iowa State will host TCU in a game of evenly-matched teams. The Cyclones have to figure out how to win a close game, and they very well may get another opportunity to do so this weekend. ISU will find a way to win in a must win game at home against a team that has had quarterback problems for much of the season.

Prediction: ISU wins a close one.

WVU

WVU enjoyed a bye week as the Mountaineers prepare to face Texas. To recap WVU’s season, it started rough with a close win over James Madison at home and followed by a blowout loss at Missouri. WVU rebounded with a big win over NC State and started conference play 1-0 with a close win over Kansas.

The KU win doesn’t look as good now after the Jayhawks were dismantled by TCU 51-14 last weekend. The only thing the Mountaineers have going for them this weekend is home field advantage. Texas is better and more experienced at nearly every position. The Texas defense will be banged up coming into this game, even after Texas had a bye week of its own.

Even if the WVU offense is able to hang some points on a depleted Texas defense, the Mountaineer offense won’t be able to keep up with the Texas offense. The best case scenario seems to be a shootout for WVU.

Prediction: Texas wins by several scores.

Texas Tech

The Texas Tech-OU game went just how everyone thought it would. Hurts exited early and got in a postgame weight lifting session as OU rolled 55-16. Armand Shyne scored the only Texas Tech touchdown of the game. Jett Duffey took over for Jackson Tyner at quarterback and passed for 120 yards.

This week Texas Tech will host OSU. With all the issues these teams have in the red zone on offense, I would expect a healthy amount of field goals in this game. I don’t see Texas Tech’s offense as being better than KSU’s, at least not without Alan Bowman, and the OSU defense shut down the KSU offense last weekend.

If OSU can figure out some of its red zone issues on offense and the defense continues to play how they did last weekend, the Pokes should win big over Texas Tech. As it is, the Cowboys have won a handful straight in Lubbock and nine of the last 10 against Texas Tech. Of course, the one loss was last season.

Prediction: OSU wins big.

Kansas

Kansas followed a close home loss against West Virginia with an embarrassing road loss at TCU. The Jayhawks were dominated in every facet of the game in a 51-14 blowout. Kansas has been the only team TCU has faced this year to make the TCU quarterback’s look good.

Kansas did not “let ‘er rip” as Les Miles famously said. All 14 points Kansas scored came in garbage time in the fourth quarter. Carter Stanley threw a touchdown pass to Pooka Williams Jr, who led the team in receiving with 33 yards.

It won’t get any easier for Kansas this week. The Jayhawks may be back at home, but Kansas will have to face OU, and they’ll have to do it without star running back Khalil Herbert, who has left the team. Kansas is in for a long day this Saturday against the Sooners.

Prediction: Oklahoma wins big.

Big 12 Championship Game:

Texas Longhorns vs Oklahoma Sooners

Oklahoma State has started to solidify itself as the third best team in the conference with the Baylor Bears right behind them. Oklahoma State and Baylor likely pose the biggest threat to these schools, but ultimately, it’ll likely be another Red River Showdown for the Big 12 title. I’ll take Oklahoma in this one.

Offensive Player of the Year:

Jalen Hurts: Oklahoma University

Hurts passed for 415 yards and only ran for 70 yards en route to four total touchdowns against Texas Tech. Oh yeah, he only played three quarters too. Hurts got in another one of his weight lifting sessions after the blowout and is still in firm position to win the Heisman trophy.

Defensive Player of the Year:

Garret Wallow: Texas Christian University

Wallow recorded six tackles against Kansas, leading the TCU defense once again and bringing his season total to 48 tackles and 2.5 sacks.

Big 12 Newcomer of the Year:

Spencer Sanders: Oklahoma State University

If Sanders can finish drives and cut down on interceptions, he is a lock for this award. For now, I am continuing to look around the conference to see if any other names jump out for this award. Sanders passed for 153 yards and rushed for 52 more against Kansas State.

Big 12 Freshman of the Year:

Jadon Haselwood: Oklahoma University

Haselwood caught six balls for 59 yards and was OU’s third leading receiver against Texas Tech. I would still like to see him get more involved in the passing game, but getting more targets than CeeDee Lamb and Charleston Rambo isn’t likely.

Coach of the Year:

Lincoln Riley: Oklahoma University

If Mike Gundy can get his Cowboys to run the table, at least until Bedlam, I could see Gundy winning this award. At this point, the Big 12 should be looking to give the award to someone else. I guess Riley could win it every year, but that just isn’t fun. LeBron James doesn’t win MVP every year. Everyone knows Riley is the best coach in this conference, but Gundy has a shot if he can continue to do more with less.

Breakout Player of the Year:

Chuba Hubbard: Oklahoma State University

Hubbard rushed for 296 (!!) yards and a touchdown against Kansas State last weekend. Hubbard is starting to get some national recognition as a Heisman candidate. He won’t beat out Hurts, nor will he beat out quarterbacks Tua Tagovialoa from Alabama or Justin Fields from Ohio State, but it would be cool to see Hubbard get an invite to the Heisman ceremony as a finalist in New York as one of the best non-quarterback player in the country.