- Max Olson, ESPN Staff Writer
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A month ago, Texas Tech vs. Baylor was looking like one of the marquee games of the final month of Big 12 football. It's still a big deal, but a lot more is on the line in a top-25 showdown in Austin. Meanwhile, Oklahoma looks to bounce back as three other teams chase bowl eligibility.
Here are the storylines to watch in Week 12 of the Big 12:
Iowa State at No. 18 Oklahoma, 11 a.m. CT (FS1): It's been a rough week for much-criticized Oklahoma offense, but a visit from Iowa State on Saturday might be just what the Sooners need. They're no longer playing for the Big 12 title, but there's plenty of pride on the line on senior day. The Cyclones are mired in a six-game losing streak and have lost their last 14 games against OU.
West Virginia at Kansas, 11 a.m. CT (FSN): Could Kansas get its first Big 12 victory of the Charlie Weis era on Saturday? This might be as good a chance as any, against a banged up West Virginia team that has gone to overtime in back-to-back weeks. No, they're not related, but the battle of Charles Sims vs. James Sims should be a good one.
No. 12 Oklahoma State at No. 24 Texas, 2:30 p.m. CT (FOX): A must-win game for two streaking teams who both want to stay in this Big 12 title race. Texas looks to improve to 7-0 in the conference despite losing RB Johnathan Gray and DT Chris Whaley, and the Longhorns can knock OSU out of the race with a win. The Cowboys, winners of five in a row, can set up a de facto Big 12 title game at home against Baylor by taking care of business in Austin today.
TCU at Kansas State, 2:30 p.m. CT (FSN): It's homecoming weekend for K-State grad Gary Patterson, who badly needs a road victory or else TCU's hopes of going to a bowl are dead. Kansas State has found a serious spark in the rushing talents of John Hubert and Daniel Sams. The Horned Frogs are averaging 17 points per game in Big 12 play and haven't won two games in a row all year. Can they find their spark?
Texas Tech vs. No. 5 Baylor, 6 p.m. (FOX): The showdown at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, should've provided another big stage for Baylor to send a message to the nation. But Texas Tech has lost three in a row and is nearly a four-touchdown underdog. The Bears have won shootouts (66-42, 52-45) in their last two meetings with Tech, and their impressive defense should be put to the test once again.
A month ago, Texas Tech vs. Baylor was looking like one of the marquee games of the final month of Big 12 football. It's still a big deal, but a lot more is on the line in a top-25 showdown in Austin.