Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Big 12 upset alert: Week 9
By David Ubben
Each week, we pick the Big 12 game most likely to go the opposite way experts believe.
Like last week, there weren't a lot of great picks, but I narrowed it down to one.
My pick: TCU at Oklahoma State
The biggest reason for this one: Oklahoma State's quarterback issues. The Cowboys offense revolves around the position, and this week, there's all kinds of uncertainty.
TCU has a defense that could take advantage.
J.W. Walsh is likely out for the season, and Wes Lunt's knee is still healing. Will Lunt be ready, and if he is, will he show any signs of rust?
Either way, Lunt threw three interceptions the last time he played a full game, and TCU's defense will be even tougher. Only one of those picks was truly Lunt's fault, but Arizona has just four more interceptions the rest of its season.
TCU's 14 interceptions are tied for third-most nationally and there might be a few on the table this week, too. Can Lunt adjust to game speed as a true freshman after missing more than a month?
Junior Clint Chelf might get a shot, but two younger players passed up Chelf on the depth chart this spring. He's seen little time all season. Can he carry Oklahoma State to a tough conference win?
Whoever plays will have to escape Devonte Fields, too. The true freshman leads the Big 12 in sacks (7.5) and tackles for loss (13.5) and if Stansly Maponga gets back from an injury (that possibility is doubtful), the duo can provide plenty of pressure that could result in turnovers.
TCU nearly knocked off top-15 Texas Tech last week, and the young Frogs -- nearly 70 percent of the players who have taken the field are freshmen or sophomores -- are getting better by the week. They already went on the road and beat Baylor.
Oklahoma State could be next.
The Frogs are seven-point underdogs, but don't be surprised if they hand Oklahoma State a second Big 12 loss. In the Big 12, you need a reliable quarterback. Oklahoma State has a couple on its roster, but they're either rusty or unproven.
TCU will have an opportunity to take advantage.