The best and worst of the Big 12: Week 11

Let’s hand out some awards for Week 10 in the Big 12. 

Best offensive performance: Jace Amaro, TE, Texas Tech. I don’t think I’ve given this award to a player from a losing team this year, but how could you not this week? Oklahoma State settled for going 1-on-1 against Amaro for much of the night and didn’t want to focus its defense on one target, but he took advantage. He logged 15 catches for 174 yards–both career highs–and a touchdown. That was a beastly performance, and he’s the first Big 12 receiver to top 1,000 yards this season. Baylor’s Antwan Goodley and Tevin Reese will join him soon. 

Best defensive performance: Shaun Lewis, LB, Oklahoma State. He only had five tackles, but he was all over the place and stuffed the stat sheet with a forced fumble, a tackle for loss, two pass breakups and returned his interception 16 yards to key OSU’s 52-34 win over Texas Tech. 

Best team performance: Oklahoma State. OSU jumped out to a 21-0 lead after forcing a turnover and blocking a punt and rallied in the third quarter after letting Texas Tech fight back to within 28-24. The Cowboys ran for almost 300 yards and Clint Chelf completed 18-of-24 passes for 222 yards and two touchdowns. He also had two picks, and OSU’s performance was far from perfect, but when you beat a top 15 team on the road by 18 points, you’re doing a whole bunch of things very right. 

Best quote: Dana Holgorsen, after his team scored 17 fourth-quarter points to rally from a 10-point deficit in a 30-27 overtime win over TCU. “I was beginning to wonder what touchdowns looked like.” West Virginia only had one in last week’s 35-12 loss to Kansas State. 

Worst team performance: Iowa State. It feels a little bit like Iowa State’s far from being “All In.” Their seventh loss of the year officially eliminated them from bowl contention, but the Cyclones looked uninterested in a 41-7 loss to K-State. Playing without Aaron Wimberly has made life tough, but Iowa State looks like a team right now that has accepted losing. Where’s the emotion? vBest play: Chris Whaley, DT, Texas. Who doesn’t love watching guys pushing three bills rumble for touchdowns? Whaley did it off an interception last month against Oklahoma, and sparked Texas’ 35-14 win over Kansas with a 40-yard fumble return in the third quarter. He got a little help with a friendly bounce off the eighth official, but check out the big man holding the ball high and tight. That’s a former running back for you. He also became the first Texas defensive lineman to ever score two touchdowns in a single season. 

Worst play: Trevone Boykin, QB/WR, TCU. TCU had a chance to bury West Virginia and go ahead 24-10 on the final play of the third quarter after intercepting Clint Trickett and returning the pick 17 yards down to the 2-yard line. Frogs quarterback Trevone Boykin tried to shake a few tacklers and get in the end zone, but coughed up a fumble on the first play of the drive. TCU’s next offensive play was an interception from Casey Pachall, too. You didn’t have to look too hard to find a puzzling, game-changing gaffe for the Frogs on Saturday. They were everywhere. 

Second-best play: Tramaine Thompson, WR, Kansas State. How in the world did Thompson come up with this ball? He fought through blatant pass interference, turned his body and hauled it in with one hand. Just nasty. 

Best effort for greatness: Texas Tech’s trick kick return. Oh, how I wish this could have been a legendary play. The Red Raiders were wearing all-black uniforms and Bradley Marquez attempted to hide by laying in the end zone. Jakeem Grant fielded the kick and fired it 35 yards across the field to Marquez, who tried to sneak up on Oklahoma State’s return team. Marquez only made it to the 22-yard line before being dragged down. Props for the nice toss from Grant and the creativity from Tech. 

Best fashion sense: Texas Tech. Tech looks its best rocking the all black uniforms and a blackout from the fans makes it look even better. Outstanding. 

Most surprising fashion statement: K-State. The Wildcats honored the military with a camouflage Powercat logo that was the first uniform tweak since 1989 at K-State. I was two years old back then! “I’m not all that fuddy-duddy,” Snyder said of the tweak. I love Bill, but I’m pretty sure using the phrase “fuddy-duddy” renders his assertion immediately invalid.