Sunday, December 2, 2012
What we learned in the Big 12: Week 14
By David Ubben
Here's what I learned on the Big 12's last weekend of the season.
The Big 12 is pretty silly. Hey, I get that this was how life worked in the Big Eight and is how it works in many other leagues. This ain't the Big Eight. Allowing Oklahoma to celebrate a Big 12 title and giving the Sooners a trophy for it is silly. It was different when the trophies were for division titles. It was an accomplishment to tie for one, and it came with a trophy, but it wasn't a major accomplishment unless you played for the title. I'm more flexible when it comes to a three-way tie. I could see not wanting the BCS to decide. This is not a three-way tie. K-State and Oklahoma have the same record. They played the Big 12 championship game back on Sept. 22. Kansas State won. Simply put: You can't build an entire marketing campaign around crowning "One True Champion" and then hand out two trophies.
With his performance against Texas, Collin Klein likely secured his spot in New York at the Heisman ceremony.
Collin Klein still has it. The Big 12's best player hadn't had much luck since suffering a head injury against Oklahoma State a few weeks back. He had his two worst games of the season when the Heisman spotlight shined the brightest, against TCU and Baylor. Still, he bounced back in a big way against Texas and likely assured himself a spot at the Heisman ceremony. Winning it might be a stretch after the rough outing at Baylor two weeks ago, but his 287 yards of total offense and three touchdowns during a 42-24 win over Texas got him back to his usual Heisman pace.
Baylor is the hottest team in the Big 12. There are five Big 12 teams at 7-5, but Baylor is playing better than any of the others, despite being the most unlikely squad to reach 7-5 if you wind back the clock to a month ago. Baylor had just one Big 12 win, and it came against a team that went 1-11 this season. It finished with three consecutive wins, two against ranked teams (including then-BCS No. 1 Kansas State) and another against a seven-win team on a neutral field. Along the way, it might have kicked off a huge 2013 for Lache Seastrunk, who finishes the season as the single hottest player in the Big 12, capping his season with 178 yards rushing and a touchdown in the Oklahoma State win.
West Virginia still has a pulse. Kansas is a better team than WVU made it look Saturday. The Mountaineers issued a complete beating to finish the season on a two-game winning streak against the Big 12's two worst teams, but wins are wins, and after a five-game losing streak, the 'Eers needed anything they could get. There aren't many teams that beat KU as completely as West Virginia did Saturday. Great way to send out Tavon Austin and Geno Smith, but will Stedman Bailey enter the draft? He was noncommittal Saturday.