Big 12 picks: Expect all ranked teams to win again this week

October, 2, 2008
10/02/08
10:48
AM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin

Here's a look at my predictions for this week's games across the Big 12.

Kansas 34, Iowa State 17 -- Both teams had last week off, but I'm guessing that the Jayhawks should come back from the break hungrier. This could be a game where Kansas finally gets some confidence in its underperforming ground game, which won't be tested by ISU's struggling rush defense. Look for Angus Quigley and Jocques Crawford both to have productive games as the Jayhawks streak to their fourth-straight victory over the Cyclones.

Texas Tech 49, Kansas State 37 -- This should be the toughest test of the season for the Red Raiders, who have barely been challenged in a 4-0 start. In the past, Tech would struggle in games like this where they are heavily favored over what would appear to be a lesser opponent. I won't be surprised if KSU's deep passing attack, keyed by quarterback Josh Freeman and wide receiver Brandon Banks, burns the Red Raiders for some early success. But Tech will be too physical for the Wildcats, wearing them down in the trenches with an improving ground game that will be difficult for KSU to contain.

Oklahoma 44, Baylor 20 -- The streaks are all in favor of the No. 1 Sooners, who should cruise to their 13th straight victory over the outmanned Bears. OU has won the 12 games in the series against the Bears by an average of 24 points per game. Oklahoma has too many offensive weapons and should be able to dictate the pace of the game. Coach Bob Stoops would like to build some confidence in his ground game heading into next week's game against Texas after struggles last week against TCU. Scintillating freshman quarterback Robert Griffin will have a couple of moments against the Sooners, but not nearly enough. Look for Baylor to lose its 36th game in the last 37 outings against a ranked foe.

Texas 37, Colorado 17 -- Not much is known about Texas, which will face its biggest test of the season to date in their first game against the Buffaloes since the 70-3 blowout in the 2005 Big 12 championship game. It won't be that one-sided, but I expect that Texas will be stronger on both lines of scrimmage. Texas' Colt McCoy is playing as well as any quarterback in the country and should continue his mastery against the Buffaloes. And look for Texas' defensive front to dominate Colorado's injury-ravaged offense line.

Oklahoma State 45, Texas A&M 20 -- The Cowboys are intent on revenge after losing their last four games to A&M, including a pair of one-point defeats in the last two seasons. OSU's nation-leading ground attack should feast on A&M's weak defensive front, which ranks 115th nationally in rush defense. Throw in the iffy condition of Stephen McGee and this one could end up being a blowout.

Missouri 38, Nebraska 27 -- Chase Daniel has the Tigers pointing to their first victory in Lincoln since 1978 -- a triumph that would have far-reaching ramifications in terms of the division's pecking order. The Tigers rank second nationally in scoring and total offense and shouldn't be tested that severely by a Nebraska defense that was gashed for 35 points last week. Nebraska's best hope will be to force turnovers from a Missouri team that usually doesn't make very many. The Cornhuskers will keep this close for about three quarters before Missouri's superior offensive talent pulls away at the end.

My predictions last week: 6-1 (85.7 percent)

My predictions for the season: 44-4 (91.7 percent)

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