Predicting the 2012 season: Week 14

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 14.


My predictions for Week 14 in the Big 12:

Oklahoma State 41, Baylor 31: OSU has delivered Baylor two of the soundest beatings of the entire Big 12 season in 2010 and 2011. The Cowboys have had RG3's number for his entire career, but Nick Florence fares better at home than RG3 did on the road. The Bears take an early lead, but Wes Lunt rallies the Pokes for a big season-ending win, giving some momentum heading into the bowl season.

West Virginia 47, Kansas 20: KU travels to face the Big 12's best offense, and the run of close calls is over. West Virginia is hoping for an at-large bid to the BCS and does its part to impress the voters. Now, they sit and wait after a final-week showcase to keep the Jayhawks winless in conference for two consecutive seasons.

Kansas State 21, Texas 17: K-State's mastery of the boys in Austin continues yet again. The last time Texas came to Manhattan, Garrett Gilbert threw five interceptions and the Wildcats threw four total passes. This one's tight all the way through, just like last year in Austin, but Collin Klein cracks the defensive showdown with a few clutch throws late to push K-State over the edge with a go-ahead touchdown in the final minutes.

TCU 27, Oklahoma 21: Oh, dear. So close yet again, but you didn't really think Gary Patterson's Frogs would close the season with five consecutive losses, did you? TCU hosts the Sooners to close the season and ruin OU's national title hopes on the final weekend of the season. TCU controls the game with its powerful running game and forces opportune turnovers to get its biggest win of the season against the Big 12 champions. Oklahoma's search for an eighth national title is fruitless for one more year.

What do the Big 12 standings look like after the regular season? We'll talk about this in a post later this week.