Thursday, October 27, 2005

Last Minute Football Notes

The Big 12 is now down to one unbeaten team thanks to the Texas Longhorns who trashed the hopes of Texas Tech last week. Now speculation begins that the Longhorns will face off against USC in the Rose Bowl. I’m not convinced that it is a lock yet because I think Virginia Tech will continue to gain support and could generate enough votes to make it very close, too close for comfort for Longhorn fans.

Big 12 Power Rankings
1. Texas – Time to start looking into reservations in Pasadena.
2. Texas Tech – Still the second best team in the conference. Yes, Texas is that good.
3. A&M – Positioning themselves to make the Texas game a national event.
4. Colorado – Reestablished themselves as the best team in the north.
5. OU – Big win against Huskers in Lincoln could salvage the Sooners season.
6. Missouri – Caught Nebraska off guard should be able to roll against Kansas.
7. Iowa State – Can you really celebrate a win over OSU
8. Baylor – The Bears have taken the Sooners and Aggies into O.T. this season.
9. Nebraska – Looking to bounce back against Sooners this week.
10. Kansas State – Stood toe to toe with A&M.
11. Kansas – The Cowboys will keep them from dropping any lower.
12. Oklahoma State – Cowboy fans can’t wait for basketball season.

Big Game
OU @ Nebraska
The Sooners almost let a victory against Baylor slip away last week and the Nebraska defense was taken to task by Brad Smith and the Missouri Tigers. The good news for the Huskers is that OU doesn’t have Brad Smith. The bad news for the Huskers is that OU does have Adrian Peterson who is as healthy as he has been for a month and should play.

The Sooners are in trouble if…
• Peterson cannot go. Jacob Gutierrez ran well last week for the Sooners but two fumbles were costly.
• Sooner defensive ends cannot get to Zack Taylor. The OU secondary has had their share of coverage problems this season. If the Sooners can’t pressure Taylor then it could be a long afternoon.
• They turn the ball over. Turnovers almost cost them the Baylor game and they would cost the Sooners this game.

The Huskers are in trouble if…
• Peterson is healthy. The huskers would have their hands full facing the best back they have seen this season.
• Bomar has a 200+ yard passing game. That could mean thing are opening up for the Sooner attack.
• Ross does not break the century mark rushing.

This rivalry has fallen a long way from those classics of the 70’s and 80’s but still should provide us with an entertaining football game. I think ultimately the Huskers will win because of the number of freshman the Sooners will be playing on the road.
Prediction: Nebraska 24/OU 21

Possible Upset
Iowa State @ A&M
The Aggies are poised for an upset for one reason. I can’t find anyone else in the Big 12 to be my upset victim. Do you really think OSU has a chance against Texas (See game no one cares about)?
The Cyclones do have upset ability and if Baylor can stretch the Aggies why not Iowa State?
Prediction: ISU 31/A&M 28

Must Win
Missouri @ Kansas
The Tigers are suddenly tied with Colorado at the top of the north division. The Jayhawks have yet to win a conference game and will soon be looking for a new coach if that doesn’t change. This game becomes a must win for these schools, one to stay competitive and the other in an attempt to become competitive.
Prediction: Tigers 27/Jayhawks 10

Game No One Cares About
Texas @ Oklahoma State
Who had the idea to schedule Texas for homecoming? This game should be a blowout of massive proportions and even though Texas is #2 nationally, no one cares about this mismatch.
Prediction: No one cares

Other Big 12 Games

Texas Tech @ Baylor

The Bears are getting to the point where the can start winning games at home and establishing a home field advantage. Just not this week!
Prediction: Tech 42/Baylor 21

Colorado @ Kansas State
The Buffalos are in control of their own destiny. If they win out they will earn their second consecutive trip to the Big 12 Championship game. For a reward, they get to face the Longhorns again.
Prediction: Colorado 24/Kansas 10