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Big 12 Week 8 Preview and Predictions

Oklahoma Sooners

Oklahoma Sooners

Few weekends in the Big 12 will be as important and as critical as Week 8.

The top ranked team and lone unbeaten in on the road at one of the most difficult places to win in the league. Two of the greatest coaches in Big 12 history will battle in Norman with two ranked teams. And Oklahoma State has its first of many brutal road trips against a ranked TCU squad without its star quarterback.

More so than any other weekend thus far, the Big 12 takes center stage nationally in the college football world.

Week 8 Previews and Predictions:
ACCBig TenPac-12|SEC


Big 12 Week 8 Game Power Rankings

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1. Kansas State (+8) at Oklahoma

Noon, ESPN

Two of the most successful coaches in Big 12 history square off in an always interesting and important showdown near the top of league. The Wildcats defense has proven it can stop the nation’s best (See: Auburn) and Trevor Knight has been human ever since Katy Perry called him out on Gameday. Knight has struggled and the running game might not be able to help as KSU has allowed a total of 407 yards rushing in five games (81.4 ypg). Meanwhile, Jake Waters has been excellent, be it torching Texas Tech (395 yards, 5 TD) or carrying his team to victory (Iowa State), but will be faced with his toughest task against Eric Striker and Zack Sanchez on the road. Bill Snyder is 3-3 in his last three trips to Norman, including the last visit in 2012 and has had two weeks to prepare. On two evenly matched and similarly built teams coached by equally impressive leaders, the edge generally falls towards the home team.

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2. Baylor (-8) at West Virginia

Noon, FS1

Strange and bizarre things happen in Morgantown so Baylor better click on all cylinders for all four quarters if it wants to return to Texas unbeaten. Two of the best passing attacks will be on full display when Clint Trickett (367.2 ypg) and Bryce Petty (306.8) do battle in what is one of the highest scoring rivalries in the nation. In two games since joining the Big 12, Baylor and WVU have combined for 248 points as the Mountaineers scored 63 and 42 points in losses. It took a miracle fourth quarter for the Bears to survive at home against TCU last weekend and that won’t work against a West Virginia team that is capable of beating any team in the nation. West Virginia fans need to hope that Dana Holgorsen finally speaking with his kicker hasn’t jinxed a player who has won two games for WVU thus far.

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3. Oklahoma State (+8) at TCU

4 p.m., FS1

Cowboys defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer is charged with stopping arguably the nation’s most improved player in Trevone Boykin (who will play despite bizarre internet reports on Tuesday). TCU’s quarterback is second in the league at 353.6 yards of total offense per game and is leading the No. 3 scoring offense in the nation (45.8 ppg). The key for Gary Patterson’s balanced squad is how they handled the crushing fourth-quarter defeat at Baylor last weekend. If there is any letdown factor whatsoever, Daxx Garman, Tyreek Hill and the Pokes offense is good enough to walk into a normally not very hostile Amon Carter Stadium and win. While the Frogs have already announced themselves as Big 12 contenders, a win for Mike Gundy would give OSU a 4-0 start in the Big 12 and a sixth consecutive win.

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4. Iowa State (-12.5) at Texas

8 p.m., LHN

This has become a must-win game for Charlie Strong if his team wants to get to a bowl game and Paul Rhoads certainly hasn’t forgotten about how this controversial game ended last year in Ames. The Horns defense has been excellent and should be able to stop the Cyclones modest attack. The real difference maker should come under center for Texas. Tyrone Swoopes played the best game of his young career against Oklahoma and it’s critically important he continue his positive development. A clear outcome against ISU could be a sign the tide has turned in Austin.

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5. Kansas (-14.5) at Texas Tech

3:30 p.m.

Much like Texas, Kliff Kingsbury is in desperate need of a Big 12 win after losing eight straight in the league. That losing streak continued last week in painful fashion on a long, last-second field goal but there were signs of hope. After losing the turnover battle in 13 straight games, Tech broke even and Davis Webb had his best game since beating UTEP in Week 2. Penalties and defense are still a major issue and if this team can’t “get healthy” against Kansas, it may not win against the rest of the season.

Big 12 Predictions:

 

Braden Gall

Mitch Light

David Fox

Steven Lassan

KSU (+8) at Okla

Okla., 28-24

Okla., 27-20

KSU, 21-17

Okla., 30-24

Baylor (-8) at WVU

Bay., 51-42

Bay., 48-40

Bay., 63-48

Bay., 50-40

Okla St (+8) at TCU

TCU, 30-27

TCU, 37-21

TCU, 31-21

TCU, 34-24

ISU (+12.5) at Texas

Texas, 24-7

Texas, 17-10

Texas, 28-17

Texas, 31-13

Kansas (+14.5) at Tech

Tech, 38-24

Tech, 44-24

Tech, 35-21

Tech, 44-20

Last Week:

5-0

4-1

5-0

5-0

YTD:

40-4

37-7

41-3

41-3