Baylor, Texas A&M each travel to Kansas for conference play
By Krista Pirtle
Kansas State came into the season not expected to be much of anything, and Texas A&M came in with all the hype.
Since the summer, things have changed.
Texas A&M is one game shy of a bowl bid, with four losses it never thought it would have.
Kansas State is getting ready for a bowl, with only two losses to its name.
This weekend, these two teams square off in Manhattan, Kan.
Both teams have impressive quarterbacks, but will the recent loss the Aggies have suffered put them at the disadvantage?
2 Oklahoma State (9-0, 6-0)
Despite having the ball for less than 20 minutes, Oklahoma State shook off Kansas State 52-45.
The Cowboys also had four turnovers but racked up 575 yards, 73 of those were the total rush yards, all belonging to sophomore running back Joseph Randle.
The remaining 502 came from the arm of senior quarterback Brandon Weeden, who threw for four touchdowns. Half of those touchdowns and 205 yards landed in the arms of junior wide receiver Justin Blackmon.
This weekend, the Cowboys travel to Lubbock to battle the Red Raiders of Texas Tech.
It is hard to determine the intensity of the Tech team, seeing as it is inconsistent.
All the Cowboys need to worry about is the connection between Weeden and Blackmon.
Texas Tech (5-4, 2-4)
A poor offensive effort left Texas Tech coming up empty in Austin, losing to Texas 52-20.
Junior quarterback Seth Doege threw for 381 and two touchdowns, but his -28 yards on the ground brought the total rush yardage down to 30 on the evening.
Defensively, the Red Raiders allowed 595 yards to Texas.
This weekend against Oklahoma State, the Red Raiders need to decide if they want to play or not, sitting one game away from bowl eligibility.
If the answer is yes, pressuring the Cowboy quarterback will most likely force a handful of interceptions.
14 Kansas State (7-2, 4-2)
The Wildcats came close to giving Oklahoma State its first loss of the season but could not finish opportunities, losing 52-45.
Kansas State had the ball for 40 minutes, but that wasn’t enough as defensively it allowed 575 yards to the Cowboys.
Junior quarterback Collin Klein continued to rack up numbers for his team, accounting for four touchdowns.
He threw for 281 yards and a touchdown and ran for 144 and a trio of trips to the end zone.
The Aggies are known for their impressive rush defense.
In order to truly attack Texas A&M, the Wildcats need to improve their passing game to take advantage of the Aggies’ weakness.
Texas A&M (5-4, 3-3)
Junior running back Christine Michael is out for the season as well with a torn ACL.
He led the ground game with 88 yards in the loss at Oklahoma 41-25.
Offensively, the Aggies racked up more yards but four turnovers, three of them interceptions, did not benefit them in any way.
Despite that, senior quarterback Ryan Tannehill threw for 379 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
To beat Kansas State on the road, the Aggies must continue to play solid defense against the running game.
The strong A&M blitz might have an effect on the Wildcat quarterback, allowing for more Aggie offense.
16 Texas (6-2, 3-2)
After an early offseason last year, the Longhorns clinched bowl eligibility by defeating Texas Tech 52-20.
The Longhorns’ rush game is still their strength as freshman running back Joe Bergeron emerged on top with 191 yards and a trio of touchdowns.
As a whole, the Texas ground game racked up 439 yards out of the total 595.
This week Texas travels to take on Missouri.
If its run game stays strong and the defense makes stops, it’ll be a win for the Longhorns.
Missouri (4-5, 2-4)
Missouri came up short in Waco last weekend, falling 42-39 to Baylor.
The Tigers recorded impressive offensive numbers but could not capitalize on them, totaling 578 yards on the evening.
Sophomore quarterback James Franklin threw for 325 yards and three touchdowns.
Sophomore tailback Henry Josey continued to lead the ground game with 132 yards and two touchdowns.
This weekend, the Tigers host Texas, hoping to bounce back from a tough loss.
This game should be a shoot-out.
To win, the Tigers need to shut down the Longhorns’ run game and get some pocket pressure on the young Texas quarterback.
25 Baylor (5-3, 2-3)
Baylor broke records offensively last weekend as it secured the victory against Missouri 42-39.
Senior running back Terrance Ganaway tore up the turf with 186 rushing yards and two touchdowns on only 12 carries.
The Bears’ receiving corps is showing its depth, as the target is not only senior inside receiver Kendall Wright anymore, who caught for 99 yards.
Sophomore wide receiver Tevin Reese and junior wide receiver Terrance Williams recorded 163 and 100 yards, respectively.
This weekend Baylor travels to Lawrence, Kan., to take on struggling Kansas and become bowl eligible for the second consecutive year, a first since 1991-1992.
Kansas (2-7, 0-6)
Kansas almost got its first conference win of the season last week in Ames, Iowa, but couldn’t clinch, falling 13-10.
Sophomore quarterback Jordan Webb threw for 127 yards on the evening.
Kansas lacks a standout player to lead it offensively.
On the other side of the ball, the Jayhawks limited the Cyclones to only 13 points.
However, that won’t happen this week as the high-powered offense of Baylor led by junior quarterback Robert Griffin III comes to town.
One thing for Jayhawk fans to look forward to is the basketball game Friday.
6 Oklahoma (8-1, 5-1)
Senior wide receiver Ryan Broyles is done for the year due to an ACL tear.
He still managed to catch two passes for 87 yards in the 41-25 victory over Texas A&M.
His absence could be the reason for the mere 404 offensive yards the Sooners accumulated.
Junior quarterback Landry Jones threw for 255 yards and two touchdowns.
Oklahoma’s run game did not show much strength with sophomore running back Roy Finch leading at 99 yards and a touchdown.
This week, Oklahoma has a bye, providing the perfect time to redraw plays with the absence of Broyles and for Jones to find a new favorite target.
Iowa State (5-4, 2-4)
After an upset at Texas Tech two weeks ago, Iowa State couldn’t seem to get going against Kansas but still edged out a 13-10 victory.
Freshman quarterback Jared Barnett led the Cyclones with both his arm and his legs, throwing for 175 yards and rushing for 125.
Iowa State has the weekend off, looking to work hard for at least one more win on the season to become bowl eligible.
But with Oklahoma State, Oklahoma and Kansas State left on the schedule, the Cyclones might come up short.