10 Big Thoughts on the Big 12: Week 6


1. There couldn’t have been more bad luck for TCU in their first game hosting a Big 12 conference game, losing to Iowa State 37-23. Starting quarterback Casey Pachall may have played his final game after getting arrested with a DWI charge, two top running backs were out of the game (one injured in the second week and the other out after last week), and they lost their best wide receiver early in the game. Even with all the casualties on offense, they were still able to muster up over 450 yards of offense. However…

Oct 6, 2012; Fort Worth, TX, USA; Iowa State Cyclones receiver Josh Lenz (19) runs after a catch against the Texas Christian Horned Frogs at Amon G. Carter Stadium. The Cyclones beat the Horned Frogs 37-23. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

2. Five turnovers forced by the Cyclones is what did the Horned Frogs in. Not to mention two long passing touchdowns from new quarterback Jared Barnett to Josh Lenz in the first half. It was the first time that Iowa State had 50+ yard touchdowns since Brett Meyer to Todd Blythe in 2007.

3. Okay, Kansas is the worst team in the Big 12, and it’s not even close anymore. The 56-16 reality check against Kansas State made it very clear those mistakes that TCU made in the conference opener kept them from making a blowout happen. Hopefully Charlie Weis will get longer than two years to turn this thing around – he needs it.

4. Finally, this whole talk of Texas Tech having the best defense in the nation statistically can end. Iowa State helped by barely moving the ball against them at home, but those offenses the Red Raiders faced during that non-conference portion were pathetic. Unfortunately, they only moved down to second overall.

5. Oklahoma gets back into the top 10 after a 41-20 victory over Texas Tech. It was very impressive to put up 380 yards on the road and string 34 points in two quarters. Landry Jones could have similar numbers next week against Texas.

6. Geno Smith should still firmly be at number one in everyone’s Heisman lists, but some vulnerabilities were shown in the 48-45 win over Texas, and it wasn’t just the defense. That offense was lucky to nail all five of their fourth-down conversions, because they went just 3-12 on third down compared to the Longhorns’ 8-14.

7. Since New Mexico, Texas’ defense has yet to figure out how to stop the run. They’re ranked all the way to 86th – that’s tied with Boise State – and averaging 210.75 yards per game since the Lobos. In a conference league that’s considered all-passing, that’s 467 yards in two games.

Oct 6, 2012; Manhattan, KS, USA; Kansas State Wildcats quarterback Collin Klein (7) runs for a 28-yard touchdown during a 56-16 win over the Kansas Jayhawks at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Sewell-US PRESSWIRE

8. West Virginia and Kansas State round out the top five after Alabama, Oregon, and South Carolina in the coaches’ poll. That’s exactly what I have, and the AP poll is ridiculous for moving Florida all the way to fourth. LSU has been unimpressive at best since destroying Washington, and Florida isn’t exactly great on the offensive end – similar to Notre Dame.

9. The Big 12 continues to be filled with lots of talented quarterbacks. Collin Klein and Geno Smith are overshadowing Landry Jones, not to mention the emergence of both Baylor’s Nick Florence and Texas Tech’s Seth Doege. Let’s not forget the emergence of younger quarterbacks David Ash and both freshman quarterbacks at Oklahoma State, continuing the high-powered offenses in the conference.

10. Iowa State rallied after being dropped all the way to ninth in the conference, and Kansas may have cemented their way to the bottom. West Virginia claims the top spot in the conference for now, but it’s a narrow margin between them and Kansas State. Spiraling with injuries, TCU finds themselves right next to the Jayhawks.

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

Brian Spaen is the lead editor for Clones Confidential. Keep up with the latest sports fails and disdain toward the Big Ten by following him on Twitter.

Read his other work on the Oregon Ducks blog, Autzen Zoo, and Lacrosse the Web.