Predicting the 2012 season: Week 8

July, 26, 2012
Today is the next step in a new series on the Big 12 blog that we've never done before. I love predicting the standings from top to bottom, but we're going to do it week by week leading up to the season. The end goal is to offer my official prediction for each Big 12 team's record heading into the bowl games.

Remember, these are preseason predictions. We'll obviously still do week-to-week picks once the season arrives, and they may change between now and then. There are a lot of preseason practices and a whole lot of games between now and the end of the season.

There are always teams that disappoint and teams that surprise. But here's how I see the Big 12 shaking out in Week 8.

Texas 34, Baylor 31: The Longhorns defense has a rough day, but the Bears can't stop the Longhorns' power running game. Nick Florence shows off his elusiveness against an aggressive Longhorns defensive line, but Texas gets one more stop than the Bears to grab the win.

Oklahoma State 47, Iowa State 17: Just like last year's game, Oklahoma State jumped out to a 24-7 lead, but the Pokes remember last year's heartbreak and never take the gas off the pedal. Joseph Randle goes for 150 yards and the Cowboys earn some long-awaited revenge.

Oklahoma 41, Kansas 24: The Sooners had some trouble early on with the Jayhawks in Lawrence last season, and the return trip for an improving Kansas team is similar. Oklahoma started slow at home in a few games last year, and do it again, but the Sooners are too talented over the course of 60 minutes for the Jayhawks to stay close.

TCU 41, Texas Tech 31: Texas Tech has a lot to prove as a front seven when it comes to stopping the run, but TCU's balanced attack takes advantage. Matthew Tucker and Waymon James both top 100 yards and Casey Pachall only has to throw 15 passes in Fort Worth.

Kansas State 27, West Virginia 21: Remember back in 2010? Bill Snyder's team was the only one to significantly slow Dana Holgorsen's offense, keeping Oklahoma State to just 24 points. Yes, the Cowboys didn't have a suspended Justin Blackmon for that game, but these West Virginians don't have him, either. Kansas State has the speed and athleticism to slow West Virginia's skill position talent, but WVU doesn't have the physical presence up front to slow K-State's power running game. Snyder does his vintage anaconda impression and slowly squeezes the life out of the WVU offense with a ball control scheme and eliminates the crowd from the game. He also eliminates WVU from the ranks of the undefeated. Welcome to the Big 12. You now know what every other Big 12 team knows: never underestimate a talented, Bill Snyder-coached team.

BIG 12 STANDINGS (after Week 8)

1. TCU: 7-0 (4-0)
2. Oklahoma: 6-0 (4-0)
3. West Virginia: 6-1 (3-1)
4. Oklahoma State: 5-1 (2-1)
5. Kansas State: 5-2 (2-2)
5. Texas: 5-2 (2-2)
7. Texas Tech: 4-3 (1-3)
8. Iowa State: 3-4 (1-3)
9. Baylor: 3-3 (0-3)
10. Kansas: 3-4 (0-4)



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