Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin
The Big 12 claimed its first bowl victory Monday night. But it will get a lot tougher tonight when Oklahoma State faces Oregon in the Pacific Life Holiday Bowl.
Before we get there, here are a few lunchtime links to help prime the palate:
Joseph Duarte of the Houston Chronicle writes that Texas players are excited to start their football preparations for the Jan. 5 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl against Ohio State. "There comes a point when your mom asks you to take the trash out, so it was time to leave home and get here," Texas quarterback Colt McCoy said. "Those days off are nice, but now it's time to go back to work."
The Kansas City Star's Jason Whitlock writes that Missouri shouldn't celebrate its Valero Alamo Bowl victory over Northwestern. Instead, Whitlock calls them "The kings of the pathetic North Division."
Reid Laymance of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Missouri linebacker Sean Weatherspoon, the defensive MVP of the Tigers' Alamo Bowl victory over Northwestern, will return for another college football season. Weatherspoon hopes to convince his roommate Jeremy Maclin to join him.
Texas Tech's defense is bracing for a heavy dose of Mississippi wide receiver Dexter McCluster from coach Houston Nutt's "Wild Rebel" formation in Friday's AT&T Cotton Bowl.
Tonight's Pacific Life Holiday Bowl could serve as an important catapult for an Oklahoma State program hoping to compete for its first Big 12 South Division title next season. The Oklahoman's John Rohde said a win tonight could serve as a serious stimulus to the program's first BCS bowl appearance.
Starting Kansas cornerback Justin Thornton won't play in the Jayhawks' Insight Bowl game Wednesday night against Minnesota, starting linebacker James Holt told the Topeka Capital-Journal's Tully Corcoran. It will mean senior Kendrick Harper will get the start for a Kansas pass defense that ranked 113th nationally in yards allowed.