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 would look if it were up to me. I'll include road nonconference games, too.
Week 1: West Virginia vs. Marshall
Week 2: Kansas State vs. Miami
Week 3: Texas at Ole Miss
Week 4: Kansas State at Oklahoma
Week 5: Texas at Oklahoma State
Week 6: West Virginia at Texas
Week 8: Kansas State at West Virginia
Week 9: Notre Dame at Oklahoma
Week 10: Oklahoma State at Kansas State
Week 11: Kansas State at TCU
Here's the Week 12 slate in the Big 12:
Oklahoma at West Virginia
Texas Tech at Oklahoma State
Kansas State at Baylor
Iowa State at Kansas
My pick: Oklahoma at West Virginia
This one's a no doubter. K-State and Baylor played an absolute classic last year, but Oklahoma's maiden Big 12 voyage to Morgantown might be the Game of the Year in the entire conference.
Last year, it was clear early in the season that Bedlam would decide the Big 12 title. This time around, my bet is this showdown of new conference rivals, and if they're both in the top 10, don't be surprised if ESPN's "College GameDay" makes its second trip to Morgantown, a sequel to last year's visit the weekend of the LSU game.
That was a fantastic atmosphere, and GameDay or not, Oklahoma will be walking into one of the toughest atmospheres it'll see all season in this one. It'll also be another shot for Dana Holgorsen to take down the Sooners. He came dangerously close as offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State in 2010, when the Big 12 South title was on the line. Additionally, the Big 12's top two passers, Geno Smith and Landry Jones, will go head to head for the first and only time in their careers. The last time West Virginia and Oklahoma played, the Mountaineers trounced the Sooners, 48-28, in the Fiesta Bowl behind Pat White, Noel Devine and Owen "Runaway Beer Truck" Schmitt.
This year's game will have higher stakes for Oklahoma than West Virginia. If West Virginia wins, it could be very, very close to clinching the league. It finishes its Big 12 schedule with Iowa State and Kansas, who'll be picked to finish at the bottom of the Big 12. But Oklahoma?
If the Mountaineers lose, there's still hope the Sooners could lose and give WVU a share of the title or more. Oklahoma must host rival Oklahoma State before finishing up with a trip to Fort Worth to face TCU. This will be a fun one, and definitely the game of the year in Morgantown. Will it be the game of the year in the Big 12? Time will tell.