What to watch in the Big 12 in Week 8
Here are some things to watch in the Big 12 Conference in Week 8:
GAME OF THE WEEK
TCU (4-2, 2-1 Big 12) at No. 12 West Virginia (5-0, 2-0). This will be the third meeting in Morgantown for the teams that came into the Big 12 together in 2012. TCU won each of the previous two games there by one point — in overtime four years ago and on a game-ending field goal in 2014, while WVU won in overtime in Fort Worth between those games. The Mountaineers have won 10 of their last 11 games since a 30-point loss at TCU last October. West Virginia quarterback Skyler Howard (eighth nationally with 357 total yards per game) is a Fort Worth native.
Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield vs. Texas Tech. Mayfield plays in Lubbock for the first time since he was a Red Raider in 2013, the season he became the first true freshman walk-on quarterback to start a season opener for an FBS team. Mayfield transferred to Oklahoma after that season, and was redshirting when the No. 16 Sooners last played in Lubbock in 2014. In last year's 63-27 win in Norman, Mayfield threw for 212 yards and two touchdowns. Texas Tech junior QB Patrick Mahomes is the national leader with 2,579 yards passing, and is fifth with 21 TDs.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
Kansas State is 8-4 against Texas since the inception of the Big 12, including wins the last four meetings in Manhattan, where the teams play Saturday. … Texas had a season-high eight sacks and didn't allow a touchdown in last week's 27-6 win over Iowa State. The six points were the fewest scored by a Big 12 team in conference play this season. … No. 9 Baylor has its second open date in three weeks. The Bears are the only FBS team to be 6-0/a for the fourth consecutive season. … Iowa State WR Allen Lazard has a reception in 30 consecutive games, a school record. … K-State has scored on its last 53 trips into the red zone, the longest active FBS streak.
Kansas is a nearly four-touchdown underdog at home against Oklahoma State. The Cowboys have won six straight in the series, winning those games by an average margin of 29 points — even though their last two trips to Lawrence were wins of 27-20 and 20-14. The Jayhawks are coming off a 49-7 loss at Baylor, which came a week after Kansas missed three field goals in the fourth quarter of a 24-23 home loss to TCU.
Oklahoma senior Dede Westbrook has eight touchdown catches in the last three games, a stretch when he has 26 catches for 574 yards. Six of those touchdowns are 40 yards or longer, including an 88-yarder last week against Kansas State.