I've been inspired by the boys at the Big Ten Blog, and this should be a fun walk through each week in the new-look Big 12 next season. I'll pick one game a week during the season that I'd attend if it were entirely up to me. I don't make the call, and things change as games are played of course, but right now, this is how it'd look if it were up to me. I'll include road nonconference games, too.
Here's the slate for Week 4:
Baylor vs. Louisiana-Monroe
Kansas vs. Northern Illinois
Kansas State at Oklahoma
TCU vs. Virginia
West Virginia vs. Maryland
My pick: Kansas State at Oklahoma
Uh, yeah. No-brainer on this one. K-State and Oklahoma have a good shot to both be in the top 10 for this game, the conference opener for both. Don't be surprised if "College GameDay" shows up in Norman, too.
Last year, despite holding a preseason No. 1 ranking, I never got to see the Sooners play in Norman. That could change very early in 2012. Oklahoma's high-flying, balanced offense will go up against the run-heavy Wildcats, who should have a pretty stingy defense, too. It'll be fun to see them go head to head. Winner gets the inside track at a Big 12 title, and Kansas State can prove very early in the season that Oklahoma's hardly a favorite to win the Big 12. That, or Oklahoma could prove very early that it's the favorite and then some. And, the Sooners aim to get back to its Big 12 title-winning ways after a rough season that ended with an embarrassing defeat to in-state rival Oklahoma State.
That's not all that's at stake. Winner of this game will get some serious run as a Heisman contender. Landry Jones could cement his status as a favorite, and with an upset, K-State QB Collin Klein could announce his arrival into the race. This one won't be a 41-point blowout like last year's game in Manhattan. I'd love to be there and see it.