Dallas Colleges: D.J. Beshears
|Texas A&M WR Ryan Swope dishes on the transition to the SEC, coming back for another year and much more. |
West Virginia and Baylor are off this week.
No. 21 Kansas State vs. Miami (noon, FX): Wildcats linebacker Arthur Brown plays his former team a second time after knocking off The U in Miami Gardens last year. The Wildcats get the early game and their first test after rolling over Missouri State with an explosive third quarter. Miami got a good win over Boston College to start its season, but Kansas State is a better team.
Iowa State at Iowa (3:30 p.m., Big Ten Network): Iowa will be out for revenge after last year's three-overtime upset, including a double-digit, fourth-quarter comeback. Steele Jantz looked much improved in last week's win over Tulsa, and last year's win was the Cyclones' first in the rivalry since 2007. Iowa State hasn't won in Iowa City in a decade, but it has also never played for this brand-new trophy. Motivation, y'all!
Kansas vs. Rice (3:30 p.m., Fox Sports Net): KU got back in the win column last week, but quarterback Dayne Crist was unsatisfied with his performance. He'll have more time this week to get in sync with receivers Kale Pick, Daymond Patterson and D.J. Beshears. KU's retooled defensive line has a lot to prove still, too. The Jayhawks notched two sacks (it had nine all of last season), but gave up a 99-yard touchdown run.
No. 17 TCU vs. Grambling State (7 p.m., Fox Sports Net): TCU had to wait an extra week, but it's finally time to unveil the Frogs' new stadium and debut a team playing as a Big 12 member for the first time. This game shouldn't be interesting, but it'll be an emotional weekend in Fort Worth, no doubt.
Texas Tech at Texas State (7 p.m., ESPN3): Texas Tech looked pretty good last week against Northwestern State, but it's anyone's guess what Texas State has in store for Tech this weekend. The Red Raiders will travel to San Marcos, but Dennis Franchione's Bobcats knocked off Houston on the road last week.
No. 5 Oklahoma vs. Florida A&M (7 p.m., pay-per-view): The Sooners won't be clinging to a narrow lead in the fourth quarter against the FCS Rattlers, but Oklahoma's offense needs to work on a whole lot before Saturday. Landry Jones looked uncomfortable and out of sync with his new receivers, and Bob Stoops complained of "inconsistency" all over the place in Saturday's win over UTEP.
No. 15 Texas vs. New Mexico (8 p.m., Longhorn Network): New Mexico's off to a nice start under Bob Davie, hanging 66 points on the board last week. Here's guessing the Lobos won't put 60 on the Longhorns, who turned in a solid effort against a Wyoming team that's better than most think. Still, David Ash and even the hyped defense were far from where they need to be for Texas to contend for a Big 12 title. The Longhorns will need to see some improvement.
No. 16 Oklahoma State at Arizona (10:30 p.m., Pac-12 Network): Wes Lunt has yet to throw an incompletion ... or his first career touchdown pass. We didn't learn much about Lunt in the Cowboys' infamous 84-0 win over Savannah State. This one? A much more difficult test. Arizona struggled to beat Toledo last week, but going on the road against a major conference opponent, especially with a true freshman quarterback, is intriguing. The Cowboys are a double-digit favorite, though, and face the Wildcats for a third time in 16 games.
Six from the Big 12 made the cut.
- Tavon Austin, West Virginia
- D.J. Beshears, Kansas
- Brandon Carter, TCU
- Quandre Diggs, Texas
- Justin Gilbert, Oklahoma State
- Josh Lenz, Iowa State
The Hornung Award is only 3 years old, but it's a pretty cool designation. Gotta love Austin's chances here. He personifies versatile. He's a great receiver, but they love to give him the ball on jet sweeps, too. He's also great in the return game.
Look out for Gilbert, a cornerback/kick returner, to make some noise in the award race, too.
Georgia's Brandon Boykin, a CB/KR, won the award last year. Stanford's Owen Marecic won the inaugural award in 2010 for his work at linebacker and fullback.
In this position, unlike quarterback, depth is a major, major factor in these rankings.
More postseason position rankings:
2. Baylor: Kendall Wright actually outperformed Blackmon and Ryan Broyles on the stat sheet, catching 108 balls for 1,663 yards. The Bears didn't have the insane depth of OSU, but the trio of Wright, Terrance Williams (59 rec, 957 yards, 11 TDs) and Tevin Reese (51 rec, 877 yards, 7 TDs) were all in the Big 12's top seven receivers.
3. Texas A&M: Ryan Swope emerged to become one of just four Big 12 receivers to notch 1,000-yard seasons. Jeff Fuller's season was disappointing, but he still finished eighth in the league in receiving, and Uzoma Nwachukwu was in the league's top 15 in receiving.
4. Oklahoma: The Sooners weren't quite as solid as they thought to begin the season. Broyles was as advertised, though his Biletnikoff-contending season was cut short by a torn ACL. The unit was productive, but came down with the drops late in the season. Broyles and Kenny Stills were both in the league's top seven in receiving, and Jaz Reynolds caught 41 passes for 715 yards to crack the top 10.
5. Texas Tech: Tech's top target, Darrin Moore, battled injuries all year, but Eric Ward emerged as the team's most consistent target, catching 84 passes for 800 yards and 11 scores. Alex Torres missed two games, but added 616 more yards.
6. Missouri: The Tigers' receivers had their production dip with a dual-threat passer in James Franklin who ran the ball more than his predecessor, but they were still pretty good, despite lacking a true big-time threat. T.J. Moe caught 54 passes for 649 yards and four scores. Tight end Michael Egnew added 50 grabs for 523 yards and three scores. L'Damian Washington, Marcus Lucas and Wes Kemp had unremarkable individual seasons, but their production added up to a good year for Mizzou's receivers.
7. Kansas State: Kansas State was better than most thought to begin the season, but the ground-based offense limited their receivers' ability to finish with big production. Chris Harper (40 rec, 547 yards, 5 TDs) led the group. Tramaine Thompson and Tyler Lockett showed some good promise, too.
8. Texas: The Longhorns could get really good, really fast at this spot. The uncertainty/struggles at quarterback limited this group, but Jaxon Shipley and Mike Davis could both mature into absolute stars. For now, though, they didn't quite crack the top 15 in the Big 12 in receiving. Both topped 40 catches and 600 receiving yards.
9. Iowa State: Darius Reynolds' size downfield will be missed, but Aaron Horne and Josh Lenz are tough covers working the middle of the field. Reynolds caught seven touchdowns, and Horne and Lenz both topped 38 catches.
10. Kansas: Yikes. The Jayhawks didn't have a receiver in the league's top 20, but D.J. Beshears led the team with 40 grabs for 437 yards and three touchdowns. He was the only Jayhawk in the Big 12's top 32 in receiving.
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