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Kansas State, Oklahoma and more; Athlon recaps the Week 12 action in the Big 12.
Kansas State remains atop the Big 12 power rankings, but the Wildcats are no longer in the driver's seat to play for a national title. Despite the loss to Baylor, Kansas State still maintains an edge for the Big 12 title. Oklahoma survived a shootout win over West Virginia to control the No. 2 spot in the power rankings and remains alive for an at-large spot in the BCS. Oklahoma State is one of the Big 12's hottest teams, crushing Texas Tech 59-21 to move to 7-3 this season. Iowa State picked up a key win on Saturday night, as the Cyclones got bowl eligible with a victory over Kansas.
Post-Week 12 Big 12 Power Rankings
1. Kansas State (10-1, 7-1 Big 12)
Last Week: 1
Week 12 Result: Lost to Baylor 52-24
Despite Saturday’s loss to Oklahoma, the Wildcats still deserve the No. 1 spot in the Big 12 power rankings. What went wrong for Kansas State on Saturday? Just about everything. Quarterback Collin Klein had an off night, and the defense didn’t have an answer for Baylor’s offense. The Wildcats are likely finished as a national title contender but can still win the Big 12 with a victory over Texas.
Next Game: Texas (Dec. 1)
2. Oklahoma (8-2, 6-1 Big 12)
Last Week: 2
Week 12 Result: Beat West Virginia 50-49
The Sooners won perhaps the craziest game of Week 12. A late touchdown pass from quarterback Landry Jones to receiver Kenny Stills was just enough for Oklahoma to claim a 50-49 victory over West Virginia. The Sooners surrendered 778 yards to the Mountaineers and allowed a season high of 320 passing yards to Geno Smith. However, Oklahoma’s offense answered the bell against a porous Mountaineers’ defense, which keeps the Sooners’ BCS bowl hopes alive for another week.
Next Game: Oklahoma State
3. Texas (8-2, 5-2 Big 12)
Last Week: 3
Week 12 Result: Bye Week
The Longhorns had the weekend off and are set to return to action against TCU on Thanksgiving night. Since losing back-to-back games in early October, Texas has rebounded with four consecutive wins. Quarterback David Ash has been sharp the last two weeks, throwing five touchdowns and no interceptions. The sophomore’s improvement is crucial, especially with upcoming matchups against TCU and Kansas State.
Next Game: TCU (Nov. 22)
4. Oklahoma State (7-3, 5-2 Big 12)
Last Week: 5
Week 12 Result: Beat Texas Tech 59-21
The Cowboys continued to climb in the Big 12 power rankings with a convincing 59-21 win over Texas Tech. Despite three quarterbacks making a start this year, Oklahoma State still ranks No. 3 nationally in scoring offense and is averaging 553.7 yards per game. The Cowboys will play their next two games on the road, including Saturday’s date at Oklahoma. Oklahoma State has won five out of its last six games, and coach Mike Gundy deserves a ton of credit for getting this team in a position to win nine games this year, especially considering the personnel losses from last season.
Next Game: at Oklahoma
5. Texas Tech (7-4, 4-4 Big 12)
Last Week: 4
Week 12 Result: Lost to Oklahoma State 59-21
After a promising 6-1 start, the Red Raiders have been headed in the wrong direction over the last four weeks. Texas Tech was defeated 59-21 by Oklahoma State on Saturday, which dropped it to 4-4 in the Big 12 with one game remaining. In the loss to the Cowboys, the Red Raiders lost three turnovers and had a punt that was blocked and returned for a touchdown. Texas Tech closes out its 2012 regular season with a matchup against Baylor.
Next Game: at Baylor
6. TCU (6-4, 3-4 Big 12)
Last Week: 6
Week 12 Result: Bye Week
The Horned Frogs had an off date on Saturday and return to action on Thanksgiving night against Texas. TCU is just 1-3 in its last four games but has played a difficult stretch of opponents, including Texas Tech, Oklahoma State and Kansas State. The Horned Frogs have played only one matchup against Texas since 1996, losing 34-13 in 2007. After Thursday night’s game against the Longhorns, TCU has to quickly regroup with a home game against Oklahoma coming up on Dec. 1.
Next Game: at Texas (Nov. 22)
7. West Virginia (5-5, 2-5 Big 12)
Last Week: 7
Week 12 Result: Lost to Oklahoma 50-49
The Mountaineers’ late-season slide continued with a 50-49 loss to Oklahoma. Receiver Tavon Austin had a heck of a performance in a losing effort, rushing for 344 yards and two touchdowns and catching four passes for 82 yards. Austin’s 572 all-purpose yards were the most in Big 12 history. Although West Virginia has tailed off since winning a 48-45 shootout at Texas, it has a chance to finish with some momentum with matchups against Iowa State and Kansas the next two weeks.
Next Game: at Iowa State
8. Iowa State (6-5, 3-5 Big 12)
Last Week: 8
Week 12 Result: Beat Kansas 51-23
The Cyclones got bowl eligible with a 51-23 win over Kansas on Saturday night. The big surprise in the victory was the play of quarterback Sam Richardson. The redshirt freshman completed 23 of 27 passes for 250 yards and four touchdowns and added 43 yards and one score on the ground. The Cyclones defense allowed 252 rushing yards but forced four turnovers and held the Jayhawks to just 5 of 15 on third-down attempts. If Iowa State can beat West Virginia, it will have its second seven-win season under coach Paul Rhoads.
Next Game: West Virginia
9. Baylor (5-5, 2-5 Big 12)
Last Week: 9
Week 12 Result: Beat Kansas State 52-24
The Bears scored one of college football’s top upsets of 2012 on Saturday night, knocking off Kansas State 52-24. Quarterback Nick Florence tossed two picks but finished with 238 passing yards and two touchdowns. Running back Lache Seastrunk has ignited the rushing attack in recent weeks and recorded 185 yards and one touchdown on 19 attempts. Not only did Baylor’s win shake up the national title picture but kept its bowl hopes alive. The Bears need a win over Texas Tech or Oklahoma State to get to six victories.
Next Game: Texas Tech
10. Kansas (1-10, 0-8 Big 12)
Last Week: 10
Week 12 Result: Lost to Iowa State 51-23
The Jayhawks held an early 14-10 lead over Iowa State but quickly fell behind 38-17 by halftime. With an offense that has a limited passing attack, Kansas was unable to mount a serious comeback on Saturday night. One overlooked aspect of the loss was running back James Sims had his six-game 100-yard rushing streak ended with just 81 yards on 20 attempts. The Jayhawks have not won a conference game since Nov. 6, 2010 and their hopes of scoring a victory are slim, especially with a trip to West Virginia on the schedule.
Next Game: at West Virginia (Dec. 1)
by Steven Lassan
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