The Ultimate Big 12 Road Trip: Week 4

We're continuing our march across Big 12 country with your dream trek for 2013. Want to see the best of the best in the Big 12 this season? Come along with us.

We don't make the final decisions about where we spend our fall Saturdays, but I'm walking week by week through the 2013 season and forecasting where I'd like to be each week of the season. Circumstances change as games happen, of course, but here's how I'd project the season. Road nonconference games count. Let's move on with the next week.

More 2013 Ultimate Big 12 Road Trip.

Here's the Week 4 schedule in the Big 12:

  • Texas Tech vs. Texas State

  • Kansas vs. Louisiana Tech

  • West Virginia vs. Maryland in Baltimore, Md.

  • Kansas State at Texas

  • Baylor vs. Louisiana-Monroe

My pick: Kansas State at Texas

No question about this one. First off, it's the lone Big 12 game of the week, but it'll also be my first look at the Longhorns, who have a lot to prove in a season that feels a whole lot like "Big 12 title or bust" for the less patient among the burnt orange supporters.

Last year's game was entertaining, but the Wildcats stretched their record against Texas to 7-2 all time in Big 12 play, a streak that even included the Ron Prince Era, so don't solely blame Bill Snyder's wizardry. After three games it should win handily, the trip to Austin to face the Longhorns will be the first real test for the reigning Big 12 champs, the first time it'll take the field not as a heavy favorite.

As for Texas, it needs quality wins to win the league and needs to prove it truly has a team that can contend for a championship, and winning this game would be a solid step in doing so. The Longhorns will be much more tested than K-State at this point in the season after a trip to BYU and hosting an upstart Ole Miss team. Those are two very losable games, but they're also wins that would give Texas one of the best nonconference résumés in the Big 12 and in the nation this early in the season.

A win over Kansas State would validate that résumé and give Texas a really good win heading into the thick of Big 12 play.