Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Big 12 game balls: Week 3
By David Ubben
Not everybody can earn helmet stickers each week, or get a mention in our weekend rewind. Still, there are plenty of performances worth mentioning. For this reason, we have game balls. Here's who else cleaned up on Saturday across the Big 12.
Josh Stewart, WR, Oklahoma State: Stewart's a big piece of Oklahoma State's offense this year, and showed what he could do with his old high school teammate, quarterback J.W. Walsh. Walsh earned my player of the week honors for his performance, but somebody had to catch his passes. Stewart hauled in nine of Walsh's 21 completions for 104 yards and a pair of scores. Nicely done.
Eric Ward, WR, Texas Tech: Like Stewart, Ward's big day was overshadowed by the excellence of his quarterback. Still, Tech's leading receiver from a year ago sometimes gets overlooked because of his own receiving unit's depth. Saturday, Ward hauled in three touchdowns in just the first half of the Red Raiders' win over New Mexico. He finished with five catches for 90 yards.
Kansas' defense: This unit caught plenty of flack and for good reason a year ago, but it kept making plays on Saturday to keep the game within reach. The Jayhawks forced four turnovers, and though only one (a bad snap) was unforced, you saw a new discipline and confidence for the Jayhawks defensively. That's going to pay off eventually. The Jayhawks are now tied with Alabama for the nation's most takeaways (12).