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11/04/2012

Big 12 is case study of parity (mediocrity?), and entertainment

Usp-ncaa-football_-oklahoma-state-at-kansas-state-3_4_r560If Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein's mysterious upperbody/lowerbody/left side/right side injury is actually serious enough to prevent him from playing the Big 12 is suddenly just experiencing a down season.

Assuming Klein is healthy and the Wildcats win their next three games - at TCU, at Baylor and home vs. Texas - to finish the regular season 12-0 and 9-0 in conference call it a great season for the Big 12. The Cats will either be in the Fake National Title game, or be the poor little team that gets screwed in this "very fair" process.

The No. 3 (AP poll) Wildcats will play TCU in Fort Worth on Saturday at 6 p.m.

What we have here in this first season of this revamped conference is little like originally projected. Here is the 2012 poll as selected by the media that covers the league, and the current standings:

PREDICTED ORDER OF FINISH ...... ACTUAL STANDINGS
1. Oklahoma (32) ...............       Kansas State (9-0, 6-0)
2. West Virginia (7) ................. Oklahoma (6-2, 4-1)
3. Texas .............................  Texas (7-2, 4-2)
4. Oklahoma State .................. Oklahoma State (5-3, 3-2)
5. TCU (1) ............................ Texas Tech (6-3, 3-3)
6. Kansas State (1) .................. TCU (6-3, 3-3)
7. Baylor ............................. West Virginia (5-3, 2-3)
8. Iowa State ........................ Iowa State (5-4, 2-4)
9. Texas Tech ....................... Baylor (4-4, 1-4)
10. Kansas  ........................... Kansas (1-8, 0-6)

Kansas State has been dramatically better than every other opponent. Oklahoma has been just good enough to be second while the rest are eating each other alive.

Just when Texas Tech looked as if it would secure itself as the third-best team, the Red Raiders pooped down their pants and lose at home against a Texas team that once again is disappointing.

Kansas-hires-Charlie-Weis-as-new-head-coach-TMMI014-x-largeOnly Kansas, which somehow is going to win fewer games under first-year coach Charlie Weis than it did last season under Turner Gil, was the only predcitable variable with its consistent suckage.

By season's end the Big 12's third place finisher is not going to look that much different than seventh, or eighth.

Outsiders will say the league is down. Big 12 proponents, and coaches, will say this reflects parity. 

Whatever the case, it is highly, highly entertaining.

@MacEngelProf
tengel@star-telegram.com
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