First, Happy Thanksgiving week to everybody. We all have so much to be thankful for.
I only hope these picks this week will have a little less stuffing and a little more meat on the bone as we finish the regular season.
Another solid 5-for-6 picking week for me again last week, missing only on Oklahoma at Texas Tech. I didn’t think the Red Raiders or their quarterback Taylor “Nick” Potts could humble the Oklahoma defense like he did.
We’ve got some interesting games this week that will determine whether Texas still has national championship hopes and if Oklahoma State has a legitimate shot to make the BCS as an at-large selection.
Here’s how I see them:
Texas 31, Texas A&M 20: Colt McCoy’s competitive juices will be flowing as he faces a Texas A&M team that beat him twice and knocked him out of the game as a freshman. Those memories will be all that he will need to get ready for the Aggies. Will Muschamp was worried about all of the missed tackles against Kansas and he’ll be facing a similarly talented team with an underrated quarterback in Jerrod Johnson. The Aggies will keep this close for awhile, but Texas has too much riding on the results to expect anything less than the best effort from the Longhorns.
Nebraska 23, Colorado 10: These two teams have played some great games in recent seasons. But the Cornhuskers’ defense is too solid not to come prepared, even if it did clinch the North title last week. The Colorado team should be poised for an emotional effort in what could be Dan Hawkins’ last game. Despite Colorado’s ‘strong showing at Oklahoma State last week, the Nebraska defense will be ready to throttle Tyler Hansen and whatever offense the Buffaloes can muster. Look for Alex Henery to be a huge factor kicking in the high altitude in Boulder.
Oklahoma 24, Oklahoma State 21: The Sooners were humiliated in a blowout loss at Texas Tech that ranks as one of the most humbling defeats in the Bob Stoops era. Oklahoma State comes to Norman with more riding on the game than in any in their recent history as the Cowboys could claim a BCS at-large berth with a victory if Texas wins the Big 12 title next week. Mike Gundy promises that Zac Robinson will be ready to play after sitting out last week with a shoulder injury. The Sooners still have “Jump Around” ringing in their ears after last week’s debacle on the High Plains. That memory alone should have them ready to rebound as they attempt to stretch their nation-best 29-game home winning streak.
Missouri 45, Kansas 35: These two old rivals hook up for the 118th time as the Indian War Drum will be at stake. Mark Mangino’s job appears to be on the line as an internal investigation collects information about his coaching methods. The Jayhawks will be playing for a bowl berth that would give them three post-season trips for an unprecedented season. But they will be facing a sizzling Missouri offense keyed by Blaine Gabbert and Danario Alexander that appears to be peaking as the season continues. In the end, the Tigers have too much firepower as they will outscore the Jayhawks in what should be an offensive battle.
Texas Tech 35, Baylor 21: The Bears and Red Raiders visit Cowboys Stadium in Arlington for the first neutral-site battle in the 68-game history of the series. Baylor’s bowl hopes were quashed with last week’s loss at Texas A&M. And Texas Tech is coming off its most impressive victory of the season after a resounding 41-13 thumping of Oklahoma. Even with both programs seemingly headed in different directions, Baylor coach Art Briles will have his team ready to play against his old employers. But the Red Raiders have too many offensive and defensive weapons and should wear down the Bears in the second half.
Last week: 5-1 (83.3 percent)
Season record: 69-23 (75.0 percent)