Starting this year, I will not only be doing my weekly recruiting update, but I will also be doing the Big XII review and preview (with a little help from Seth C). Usually the time slot for will be Thursday at 2pm, but I kinda forgot I was doing this so I'm posting it now. Basically we'll be writing about how the Big XII teams did last week, who played well and who they're playing this week. I promise the next one will be more in depth and provide more detail, but I forgot I had homework and ran out of time. So let's get it started with a preview of who the Big XII teams will be playing this week:
SB Nation Blog: Our Daily Bears
This Week: Baylor v. SMU - Sun 6:30pm CT on FS1
#10 Baylor opens up the season (and their brand new stadium) on Saturday night against a middle of the pack AAC team in SMU. Baylor comes into the season with their starting QB and WRs back, but lose four starting offensive linemen and a majority of their defense. It's going to be tough for Baylor to repeat as Big XII champs, but it's definitely possible. It'll depend how their defense plays this year. They play both OU and Texas on the road this year, but they do get K-State (who they almost lost to) and OKST (who they did lost to) at home this year. I think they'll end the season with a good 10-2 record. As for the SMU game, they should be able to easily take care of SMU. SMU has their front 7 returning and basically everyone on offensive except Garrett Gilbert (who actually got drafted), but they simply don't have talent to keep up with the speedy Bears. Baylor should be able to win by a large margin and cruise into next week.
Baylor 56 - SMU 13
Iowa State Cyclones
SB Nation Blog: Wide Right & Natty Lite
This Week: Iowa State v. North Dakota State - 11:00am CT on FS1
Iowa State opens up the season against North Dakota State, which is by no means a easy win. North Dakota State is the best team in the FCS, riding a 24 game winning streak that includes upsetting Kansas State in the Opening game last season. Iowa State didn't do well again last season, going 3-9 overall and 2-7 in conference. However, they also probably should've beat UT due to a few calls, and got close to beating TCU. They come back in 2014 with half their defense and a majority of their offense, including adding some good recruits. I expect the same type of result as last year, with maybe another win, going 4-8. I think Iowa State will pull out a close win against North Dakota State this year, due to the fact that Iowa State has improved in players and personnel (they added Mangino as OC) and North Dakota State lost half their starters. Iowa State comes out alive.
Iowa State 28 - North Dakota State 24
SB Nation Blog: Rock Chalk Talk
This Week: None
Kansas doesn't have a game this week, so they have a wait a week before their football season starts so they can look forward to the basketball season. Like Iowa State, Kansas went 3-9 last season, an improvement from their previous years. They also won their first Big XII game since 2010, which is nice I guess. Now unfortunately for Kansas, they lost their QB and top runner in James Sims to graduation and their Top 2 running backs are out for the year with injuries. On the bright side though, they do have most of their defense returning and add some new weapons they recruited. However, I don't think it'll be enough to convince Kansas so save Charlie Weis. Not even Tom Brady can save you. I expect a 2-10 out of Kansas and less than 10,000 fans to show up to the games this year. It's going to be a rough ride for the Jayhawks. Hey, but ya'll have basketball coming soon right?
Kansas State Wildcats
SB Nation Blog: Bring On The Cats
This Week: Kansas State v. Stephen F. Austin - 6:10pm CT on KSHD
#20 Kansas State begins the season against SFA, Texas Tech's FCS opponent from last season. Kansas State comes back hungry and ready to show the Big XII once again that you can't sleep on the Wildcats. They have to replace two of their top rushes last season in QB Sams and Hubert, but they retain Jake Waters and half their receivers and O-linemen. As for defense, they also lose about half their players, including a senior leader in Ty Zimmerman. But Bill Snyder is a wizard and he makes amazing things happen, so I expect K-State to finish in the upper half of the conference standings and even have a shot at the Big XII title. I think they'll go 9-3 this season. As for SFA, they should be able to easily take care of the Lumberjacks. It will be much like game we witnessed in Lubbock last season. Plus, I don't think Snyder is going to let another FCS team sneak up on him and beat him.
Kansas State 49 - Stephen F. Austin 7
SB Nation Blog: Crimson And Cream Machine
This Week: Oklahoma v. Louisiana Tech - 6:00pm on FS OK
#4 Oklahoma starts off it's promising 2014 campaign against a Louisiana Tech team that actually lost to Kansas last season. Oklahoma comes into the new season with hopes of making the college football playoff, starting off the season at #4. They come back with almost all of their starters defense, a QB that I believe is a middle-of-the-pack QB and a QB that is now a TE, but is taking reps at QB again. They also lose their top 2 running backs and most of their starting WRs. Oklahoma has the schedule to be able to win the Big XII and maybe get into the college football playoff, but I bet Oklahoma will be screwed out of the College Football Playoff this year. I believe Oklahoma goes 11-1. They will, however, make a major bowl game I believe, and make a statement for the Big XII. As for the game against Louisiana Tech, Oklahoma should be able to demolish them. I expect a blow out victory for the Sooners to start off the season.
Oklahoma 56 - Louisiana Tech 10
Oklahoma State Cowboys
SB Nation Blog: Cowboys Ride For Free
This Week: Oklahoma State v. Florida State - 7:00 CT on ABC
Oklahoma State starts off the new year playing against the crab stealing Winston and last BCS champions in Florida State in Jerry World (I refuse to call it AT&T Stadium). Oklahoma State was so close to winning the Big XII last season, just a game away from winning the Big XII and heading to the Fiesta Bowl. This season they come back with almost an entirely new team, losing almost everyone on both sides of the ball. JW Walsh is the clear starter this year, but I don't think he's the right guy to lead Oklahoma State to a good respectable record. I think they'll go 7-5 this year, a disappoint from last year. As for the Florida State game, I don't think the Cowboys will be able to handle Florida State. The national champs returns with a good amount of starts and new, talented players to replace the guys who left. I think that Oklahoma State will have too many questions to start the season (much like South Carolina did) and end up embarrassing themselves on National TV. OKST fans better look forward to next week, cause this one is not going to look pretty.
Florida State 42 - Oklahoma State 17
SB Nation Blog: Burnt Orange Nation and Barking Carnival
This Week: Texas v. North Texas - 7:00 CT on LHN
Texas starts off the Charlie Strong era on network that nobody watches in a Stadium that won't even be sold out that is upsetting some coaches. After almost winning the Big XII last year (somehow), Texas comes back with a majority of their starts and a new man in charge of it all. This team has talent, I don't think you can argue against that, but the question will be how motivated is this team. Texas made, in my opinion, the right decision to hire Charlie Strong and are slowly bringing pride and hard work back into the program. Even though it takes time, I think the Longhorns can actually improve on their record and go 8-4 this season. Texas faces North Texas to open the season, who went 8-4 and won their bowl game. Texas is obviously the more talented team, but if they start slacking and playing like the Longhorns under Mack Brown, the Mean Green have a shot to win this game. I don't think that will happen though.
Texas 35 - North Texas 20
TCU Horned Frogs
SB Nation Blog: Frogs O’ War
This Week: TCU v. Samford - 6:00 pm CT on FSN
TCU starts off the season Stanford, except minus the "t" and add another "n" onto the n already there. TCU did not live up to expectations last season, having a terrible year offensively and struggling on the defensive end. They start the 2014 season with a new offense scheme by hiring Tech assistant Sonny Cumbie and adding transfer Matt Joeckel from A&M. They have a lot of returning starters, with the exception of the defensive line. I don't see TCU doing as bad as last season, but I don't necessarily see them doing a whole lot better either. It's tough to guess where TCU is going to land, but I'm guessing they'll go 5-7. They'll easily win against Samford I believe, giving their new offense a test run and getting ready to play against Minnesota in a couple weeks.
TCU 38 - Samford 7
West Virginia Mountaineers
SB Nation Blog: The Smoking Musket
This Week: West Virginia v. Alabama - 2:30 pm CT on ABC
West Virginia starts off the 2014 season with tough challenge against the Crimson Tide and Saban's "slow and steady" offense. They begin the 2014 season with most of their starters returning on both offense and defense. Although they lose Charles Sims, they get back pretty much the rest of their team. West Virginia will have to play well this year if they want to keep Holgorsen as their head coach. They only won 2 conference games last year, including against Kansas even. I don't think they improve on that record in 2014. I think they actually get worse, only going 2-10. As for the Alabama game, there is no way I see them winning this game, as they simply aren't in any way better than Alabama. Even if Alabama lost a bunch of starter, they still should easily defeat West Virginia. This isn't going to be pretty
West Virginia 10 - Alabama 45