Best Big 12 games of 2013

Oklahoma Sooners wide receiver Jalen Saunders (8) runs in for the touchdown during the first quarter against the Oklahoma State Cowboys at Boone Pickens Stadium.  

Richard Rowe/Richard Rowe-USA TODAY Sports

The Big 12’s football season is over, and it’s time to look back at the best of 2013. Here are the 10 best games of the year.

1. Dec. 7, 2013: Oklahoma 33, Oklahoma State 24 – Clint Chelf completed four consecutive passes to spark a drive that ended with a go-ahead touchdown with 1:46 left. Then Blake Bell, in for an injured Trevor Knight, happened. He took Oklahoma 66 yards in eight plays, capped by a seven-yard touchdown pass to Jalen Saunders in the back right corner of the end zone to give the Sooners a BCS berth and ruin OSU’s chances for a second Big 12 title in three years, as well as the Pokes’ own trip to a BCS game. OU provided the final score with a touchdown on a botched desperation play from Oklahoma State, much to this male cheerleader’s chagrin.

 

2. Nov. 9, 2013: Texas 47, WVU 40 (OT) – Case McCoy was magic once again. He converted a pressure 4th-and-7 to extend a drive and allow Anthony Fera to send the game into overtime with a 24-yard field goal. After a touchdown drive in the top half of the first overtime, linebacker Steve Edmond sealed the game with an interception. It was his last action of the season, too. He suffered a lacerated liver during the game. There were eight lead changes and Texas trailed by double digits in the third quarter. The win sent Texas to 6-0 in Big 12 play.

3. Jan. 2, 2014: Oklahoma 45, Alabama 31 – Nobody gave Oklahoma a chance to upset a Crimson Tide team many considered to be the nation’s best. The Sooners went down to New Orleans, sacked AJ McCarron seven times and hosted a breakout game for quarterback Trevor Knight to catapult themselves into Big 12 favorite status for 2014. Defensive end Geneo Grissom provided the exclamation point in the final minute when he scooped up a McCarron fumble off an Eric Striker sack and dove in the end zone to seal the game. I can’t be the only one who conjured up images of Michael Jordan’s game-winning dunk at the end of Space Jam when I saw Grissom’s game-winning leap. A frantic, entertaining, eye-popping first half put Oklahoma up 31-17 and put the Sugar Bowl this high on the list, as well as the shocking result.

4. Nov. 30, 2013: Iowa State 52, West Virginia 44 (3OT) – Who knew Grant Rohach had it in him? This game between two teams out of bowl contention didn’t attract much attention, especially after WVU raced to a 31-7 lead. The Mountaineers led 38-21 with 10 minutes to play, but Rohach, Iowa State’s redshirt freshman quarterback, hit on touchdown passes of 62 and 19 yards to rally for a tie in the final minute. He threw a 25-yard touchdown pass and completed a two-point conversion to set up a game-winning defensive stop inside the five-yard line.

5. Oct. 3, 2013: Texas 31, Iowa State 30 – We had seven lead changes, one controversial call, one game-winning touchdown and one legendary rant that provided a memorable Thursday night in Ames. Texas made a defensive stand deep in its own territory to stay within six points. Case McCoy mounted a 10-play, 75-yard game-winning drive, but Johnathan Gray appeared to be stripped by Jeremiah George short of the goal line. George raced to Iowa State’s end zone to seal the game, but Gray was ruled down before the change of possession and replays failed to overturn the decision. McCoy plunged into the end zone on the next play, which cued up this classic rant from Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads.=

6. Nov. 16, 2013: Kansas State 33, TCU 31 – How many game-winning kicks can one game have? This game had an astounding six second-half lead changes. Jack Cantele put K-State up 30-28 with just over five minutes to play, but TCU answered with a clutch 56-yard bomb from Jaden Oberkrom to take the lead back with 2:13 to play. K-State rallied with a nine-play, 44-yard drive that set up Cantele’s official game-winning kick from 41 yards out that gave K-State its fourth consecutive win and officially made the Wildcats bowl eligible.

7. Nov. 30, 2013: Baylor 41, TCU 38 – The Frogs nearly did major damage to Baylor’s Big 12 hopes after rallying from a 34-17 second-half deficit. Quarterback Casey Pachall accounted for three touchdowns after throwing a pick-six to put the Frogs in a 17-point hole. He got the ball back with 1:34 to play, and drove TCU into field goal range, but had a pass near the goal line tipped and intercepted by Terrell Burt in the end zone to seal the win for the Bears in The Revivalry.

8. Nov. 2, 2013: West Virginia 30, TCU 27 (OT) – West Virginia scored 24 consecutive points to rally from down 17-3 in the second quarter to a 27-17 fourth-quarter lead. Casey Pachall led TCU 73 yards to get within three, and the defense forced a three-and-out. Jaden Oberkrom nailed a 45-yard field goal to send the game into overtime, but TCU used penalties to fall into a 4th-and-30 in overtime and Oberkrom missed a 62-yard desperation kick. WVU took advantage and made a 34-yard kick to hand TCU its third consecutive loss.

9. Oct. 26, 2013: Oklahoma 38, Texas Tech 30 – Texas Tech entered with a 7-0 record and a well-stocked bag of tricks that lands this game on the list. Tech rallied to take a 24-21 lead after trailing 21-7. By then, the Red Raiders had run a reverse, a halfback pass for a touchdown, an amazing trick punt return and an onside kick. The Sooners (and Tech’s three turnovers) were too much to overcome. Tech’s tricks ran out on the final drive, when Oklahoma got a game-winning defensive stop.

10. Aug. 30, 2013: North Dakota State 24, Kansas State 21 – Look away, Wildcats, but that game-winning drive by Brock Jensen and the now three-time defending FCS national champions was legendary. The Bison rallied from a 21-7 deficit late in the third quarter, but ripped out K-State’s heart with an 18-play, 80-yard touchdown drive that took up 8:30 in the fourth quarter. Jensen plunged into the end zone from a yard out with 28 seconds to play and K-State’s season in a renovated stadium got off to a nightmarish start. NDSU was 4-of-4 on third downs in that drive, including conversions of 11 and seven yards.