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Big 12 Roundup and Recap: Two Teams, One Game, Bright Lights, And a Championship

Statement Saturday separated the men from the boys in the Big 12.

Oklahoma v Texas Tech Photo by John Weast/Getty Images

TCU Horned Frogs (4-5, 2-4) 14, Kansas State Wildcats (3-6, 1-5) 13

TCU beat Kansas State 14-13 in a sluggish affair at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Neither team cracked 350 yards of offense and Kansas State had three turnovers and a missed extra point. That missed XP proved crucial, as it came after Alex Delton snuck in on fourth and goal to bring the Wildcats within one point with 9:16 remaining. But the laces were in for kicker Blake Lynch, who hooked it wide left. Last week, TCU lost to Kansas on a butt fumble. This week, the Frogs beat Kansas State on a missed extra point. Football doesn’t make sense sometimes.

Frustrating as the loss is, not all is putrescence. Several players of the “who again?” variety contributed meaningful positives that give us some measure of optimism for the future. The TD catch by Knowles was beautiful, as he extended and got a foot down while avoiding the goal post supports. Wykeen Gill also showed an ability to get open, hauling in two catches. Delton ended the game 15/25 for 155 yards, with a touchdown and no interceptions.

Baylor Bears (5-4, 3-3) 35, Oklahoma State Cowboys (5-4, 2-4) 31

This was a weird game. Baylor missed too many tackles. Oklahoma State pulled out a weird formation, and Christian Morgan blocked a punt that Ebner ran for a touchdown. Hurd ran the ball a lot and was awesome catching it. Jalan McClendon missed some throws, but his big plays let Baylor win this game. This game really seemed over. But the Bears got it done. They just need to find a win in one of their final three games, including against a team that lost to Kansas in football. Baylor has never lost a game with Sailor Bear helmets.

Oklahoma State came into Waco knowing that a win would make them bowl eligible and validate their win over Texas as more than just a moment of magic. Instead, it was the Bears who delivered a statement game with some magic of their own. The Cowboys went into halftime down 14-10 knowing that penalties and special teams blunders had squandered what should have been a healthy lead.

#24 Iowa St. Cyclones (5-3, 4-2) 27, Kansas Jayhawks (3-6, 1-5) 3

One of the most important keys of this game was limiting the impact of turnovers, as Kansas is leading the Big 12 in turnover margin. Iowa State never turned the ball over, but did create one of their own in the form of a strip by Brian Peavy, which was recovered by Jamahl Johnson. The special teams took a step forward as well, with Connor Assalley connecting on 2 of 3 field goals, but Corey Dunn was still somewhat unimpressive on his punts.

The location may have been different from last year, but Iowa State still played in front of a pro-Cyclone crowd in Lawrence on Saturday. True freshman QB Brock Purdy completed 16-23 passes for 263 yards and 3 TDs as ISU rolled the Jayhawks in Lawrence. Two of those TD passes were first quarter strikes to 6’6” Hakeem Butler, who came into the game averaging 22.4 yards per catch. That average will go up after picking up 164 yards on just 5 receptions against Kansas.

#7 Oklahoma Sooners (8-1, 5-1) 51, Texas Tech Red Raiders (5-4, 3-3) 46

As it was in this matchup two seasons ago, the Sooners’ subpar defense was the biggest takeaway of the game. Starting nickel Brendan Radley-Hiles missed the game with an injury he sustained against Kansas State, but his absence was far from the only reason why Oklahoma struggled to produce stops — particularly when Alan Bowman was in the game. Texas Tech took what Ruffin McNeill’s group gave them all night, and for the most part that resulted in chunk yardage.

Before the game many of us expected a lower scoring game compared to what we saw two years ago against OU So far, we have been treated to yet another shootout, with Tech leading 31-28. Alan Bowman has shined so far, throwing two touchdowns and 227 yards on 21-27 passes. Da’Leon Ward has two touchdowns, with one on the ground and one on a screen pass

Big 12 Standings

West Virginia and Oklahoma sit tied for first place with their Friday after Thanksgiving showdown looming in three weeks. Texas and Iowa State are right behind at 4-2 and will play in two weeks in Austin. Keep an eye on that game because if Iowa State wins, they are very likely to finish with two conference losses, meaning West Virginia will absolutely be forced to beat Oklahoma to make the Big 12 title game.