Dallas Colleges: Tyler Bitancurt

Predicting the 2012 season: Week 11

August, 2, 2012
8/02/12
3:39
PM CT
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 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 might change between now and then. There are a lot of preseason practices, and a 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 11.

PREVIOUS PREDICTIONS
Oklahoma 41, Baylor 31: Oklahoma made a living beating up on Baylor. That ended last year, when RG3's Bears beat OU for the first time in 21 tries. This year, they're back in Norman. No such luck for Baylor. The Belldozer scores three times -- one fewer than he did in last year's loss in Waco -- and Oklahoma wins comfortably.

Texas 38, Iowa State 17: Iowa State's got good linebackers, but they won't do much good racking up tackles four and five yards downfield. Texas wins the battle at the line of scrimmage against an overmatched ISU line, and here come the Horns up the Big 12 standings after early-season losses to West Virginia and Oklahoma. The secondary is a nightmare for the ISU quarterbacks, too. Jared Barnett and Steele Jantz both play, and both throw interceptions.

Texas Tech 37, Kansas 34: Texas Tech hits a scare, and Kansas can smell the first conference win. This one slips through the Jayhawks' fingers with a late hookup from Seth Doege to Jace Amaro. Tony Pierson runs for 157 yards -- a season-high -- but the Red Raiders have enough offense to grab a much-needed win.

Kansas State 27, TCU 21: This thing got physical quick. Casey Pachall and Collin Klein combine for just 30 pass attempts, but Klein, John Hubert and Matthew Tucker all top 100 yards rushing. Waymon James added 85 of his own. K-State's Arthur Brown racks up 18 tackles as the Wildcats get a huge road victory and keep their Big 12 title hopes alive.

West Virginia 34, Oklahoma State 33: Tyler Bitancurt silences the Stillwater crowd with a game-winning kick in a rowdy T. Boone Pickens Stadium. Wes Lunt plays his best game of the season, and shows plenty of reasons why the Cowboys' staff named him the starter, but Geno Smith hits Stedman Bailey three times on the game-winning drive to set up Bitancurt's game-winner.

BIG 12 STANDINGS (after Week 11)

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

Big 12 has three up for nation's top kicker

July, 11, 2012
7/11/12
12:00
PM CT
The Lou Groza Award, given annually to college football's best kicker, has released its watch list.

Plenty of Big 12 talents cracked the list. Here they are:
Good list, there. I might have added Anthony Cantele from Kansas State, too, but he can earn his way on the list with a good season. Sharp's got a good shot to win the whole thing, too. He was outstanding last season as Oklahoma State's Swiss Army special teamer. Sharp placekicks, punts and is the kickoff specialist for the Cowboys, and led the Big 12 in all three categories last season.

Big 12 kickers have won the past two Groza Awards. Texas A&M's Randy Bullock upset Sharp last season to win the award, but Oklahoma State's Dan Bailey won it in 2010.

Before that, Kansas State's Martin Gramatica (1997) was the last Big 12 player to win the trophy.

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