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Monday, October 11, 2010
Big 12 weekend rewind: Week 6

By David Ubben

Here's a look back at the best and worst of the week that was in the Big 12.

Best offensive player: Taylor Martinez, QB, Nebraska. It's pretty simple this week. He broke the Nebraska quarterback rushing record with 241 yards and accounted for five touchdowns. Martinez is the spark that was missing from the Nebraska offense last year, and if the Huskers make a run at the Big 12 title, he'll be the reason why.

Best defensive player: Lavonte David, LB, Nebraska. David was one of the reasons Nebraska managed to bottle up Daniel Thomas so effectively, limiting the Big 12's leading rusher to just 63 yards on 22 carries. The junior finished with 16 tackles, a sack and two tackles for loss. Call it a coming out party for the JUCO transfer and first-year starter.

Missouri
Missouri's Jerrell Jackson (right) and Michael Egnew celebrate Jackson's 30-yard TD catch in the Tigers' win against Colorado.
Best team performance: Missouri. The Tigers could have given up all the Fifth Downs Colorado wanted. The Buffs still probably wouldn't have scored. Runner up: Nebraska. The Huskers ran away with a conference road win against Kansas State, and they did it with tons of eyes watching a national Thursday night telecast.

Best offensive freshman: Past Martinez, there wasn't much, so we'll hand this one to to T-Magic, too. Iowa State running back Shontrelle Johnson was the next-most deserving, but he had 50 yards on five carries in the loss to Utah.

Best defensive freshman: Tre' Porter, CB, Texas Tech. The secondary gave up 384 yards to Robert Griffin, but in a seven-point win, if Porter misses any of his 10 solo tackles, the outcome might have been different. He finished with 12 total tackles.

Best play: Taylor Martinez, QB, Nebraska. So you say you could run through the kind of holes Taylor Martinez had on Thursday night? Well, could you run through it, split a couple linebackers, a pair of safeties and run 80 yards untouched for a score to put your team up 24-3? No, and neither could 98 percent of the rest of the players in college football.

Best play II: Baron Batch, RB, Texas Tech. Batch broke three tackles and raced to the end zone for a 37-yard touchdown that tied the game at 21 in Texas Tech's win over Baylor.

Best play III: Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State. We'll let the decision-making by Brandon Weeden slide on this one.Weeden threw up a deep ball into double coverage for Blackmon, who jumped over a pair of defensive backs, caught it and trotted into the end zone for a 37-yard touchdown.

Worst play: Texas Tech's onside kick team. Are you guys serious? I can't remember the last time I saw an onside kick returned for a touchdown, and now these guys have given one up two weeks in a row? This week's fiasco was way more embarrassing. The kick didn't make it the required 10 yards (bad enough on its own), but the Texas Tech players casually loitering near the ball allowed Baylor's Terrance Ganaway to pick it up and outrun them for a 38-yard touchdown, one of the shortest kick return scores in college football history.

Worst quarter: Iowa State's second quarter. The Cyclones were outscored 31-0 in the quarter (!) after leading No. 10 Utah 14-10 when the first quarter ended. The finished the day with a 68-27 (!) home loss.

Worst team performance: Colorado. Getting shut out in Columbia for the second consecutive time is not exactly the statement you want to send before exiting a league. Ya'll need to watch a few Nebraska games...then do that. Or better yet, take a look at your future Pac-12 buddies, Utah. Ask Iowa State about them. Runner-up: Iowa State. Because...obviously.

Worst call: The Cowboys almost pulled it off, but why exactly is Oklahoma State trying to sneak in an onside kick up 24-21 in the third quarter? OSU got bailed out by an interception from Andrew McGee on the first play of the following drive, but the Cowboys didn't need any of that to beat the Ragin' Cajuns. Save it for the Huskers, Sooners or Longhorns.

Most poorly thought-out celebration: Kip Edwards, CB, Missouri. Edwards picked off a fourth-quarter Cody Hawkins pass and returned it 49 yards into Colorado territory to preserve Missouri's shutout. He was deservedly jacked up about it, but apparently so jacked up he forgot that cleats and asphalt make poor bedfellows. Edwards' celebration progressed onto the blacktop loop surrounding Faurot Field and took a nasty spill, but shook it off, got up and kept celebrating with his teammates. Nice job, just keep it on the turf next time.

Timeliest redemption: Texas Tech. The Red Raiders had to have a win, and they got one, taking the lead for good with a 21-0 spurt in the second quarter after trailing 21-14 to Baylor. They also scored the first 10 points of the second half to stretch their lead to 17 in the third quarter.

Best game: Texas Tech 45, Baylor 38. Any game that comes down to the final snap is a good one, and Baylor had two chances to win the game late, including a dropped touchdown pass to Kendall Wright on 3rd-and-15 that would have tied the game with under four minutes to play. Baylor let what chances it had slip away, but Texas Tech earned the win. Great game that looked less like arena football after halftime, when the teams headed to the locker room with Texas Tech holding a 35-28 lead.