Welcome to the Frogs O' War Weekend Warzone- Bye weeks abound this week, as Iowa State, Texas Tech, Texas and Oklahoma State take some time off to get their affairs in order before opening their Big 12 seasons against one another, but the remaining six teams of our inaccurately numbered conference had showdowns, going 3-1 out of conference and chalking up two wins against the ACC to go along with a win against the Sun Belt (Baylor: Manly scheduling champions) and a loss against the MAC daddies (Kansas: Manly scheduling miss Congeniality. And of course TCU now has company atop the Big 12 standings and one of the preseason favorites is now sitting tied with Kansas in last place.
Baylor 47, Louisiana Monroe 42- When people talk about momentum in football games this is an excellent game to keep in mind. The Warhawks scored the first 14 and shut Baylor out in the first quarter, but found themselves trailing 28-21 at the half as things tilted Baylor's way. The see-saw continued as ULM took the lead twice more, but in the end choked it away and couldn't make the last comeback. Baylor had a poor game on the ground averaging 3.6 yards a carry, but managed to keep things right through the air despite two interceptions tossed by Nick Florence. Much more troubling for the bears however was their inability to get off the field on third down, as the Warhawks went an excellent 12-17 on third down conversions, biting Baylor both through the air and on the ground. What undid the Warhawks were turnovers though, as ULM had two fumbles which immediately led to touchdowns for the bears. This is a definite concern if you're a fan of a team that has been known to lose a fumble here and there. So if you're a fan of one of those teams, watch out! Fortunately we here at Frogs O' War are... Oh wait... Dang. Best Staff Pick: Angry Trey predicted the closest game, but Purple Wimple picked it closest with Baylor coming out on the winning side, predicting Baylor 38, ULM 28. Next week: @ West Virginia
Maryland 21, West Virginia 31- Remember what people were saying about West Virginia in the offseason? That their offense was unstoppable and they were a big darkhorse to win the Big 12 this year? The latter part is certainly true, but people seemed to quickly gloss over the fact that West Virginia wasn't just running through the Big East setting fire to everything that moves (mostly just couches and Clemson). West Virginia had struggles against more than just LSU last season, getting blown out by Syracuse and dropping a tight one to Louisville at home on the way to the Big East championship. This year the offense looked good against little brother and Little Sisters of the Tomato Can Tech, and Maryland was supposed to be their first real test. Well they passed it, but they didn't ace it, as the offense put 24 points on the board (7 came from a fumble return for TD) despite typically insane numbers from September Heisman winner Geno Smith. The Terps defense actually did a solid job of stopping the West Virginia offense, holding the Mountaineers to just a single score in the second half, and that was set up by another Maryland fumble. Additionally, the West Virginia defense didn't have its best day, as the Terp offense pretty well match West Virginia yard for yard and first down for first down- give credit to the Mountaineers for forcing those turnovers though. Despite the win its hard not to be a bit down on West Virginia after this game, much like we were on the frogs after the TCU/Kansas game last week- the newcomers are likely not going to be running roughshod over the conference this year. Best Staff Pick: Purple Wimple makes it two in a row, predicting West Virginia 44 to Maryland 24. Not too shabby at all. Next week: Baylor
The rest of the league is after the jump!
Kansas 23, Northern Illinois 30- As we've covered each week, Dayne Crist is just not a very good quarterback, and the later in the game it gets the worse he typically is. In the fourth quarter, despite having a ten point lead at the beginning of the period, Crist started throwing the ball over and over and Kansas quickly lost their advantage as well as the game. To his credit Crist didn't throw a pick in this game, but he did once again complete less than 50% of his passes for less than 150 yards total, wasting another solid game on the ground for the Jayhawks and a defensive effort that probably would have been enough to win had they been able to get off the field for the span of more than a few incompletions in the fourth quarter. Kansas has to get its business together, and if you're going to make a quarterback switch the bye week is a pretty good time to give it a shot- especially with Kansas State coming up next. Best Staff Pick: HawkeyedFrog picked Northern Illinois by 6 (20-14), but they won by 7. Close enough. Next week: Bye
Kansas State 24, Oklahoma 19- Kansas State beat Oklahoma in Norman for just the seventh time in school history, and the first time since 1997. That's kind of a big deal, but it's an even bigger deal this year as Kansas State may now have the inside track to its first Big 12 championship since 2003. The wildcats defense dominated much of the game, stifling the Sooners on the ground, forcing fumbles and picking off Landry Jones, while the Wildcats offense played mistake free football, picking up 50% of their third down conversions and grinding it out on the ground with Klein and John Hubert combining for over 200 yards on the ground. Even the Kansas State special teams were on, as all five of Kansas State punts were downed inside the OU 20 yard line, and against that efficiency OU was toast. The offense sputtered in fits and starts, with Landry Jones looking unstoppable on OU's very last possession of the game, but very human through the rest of it, and the Sooners had no real running game to compliment it with to try and take the pressure off of Jones. In the end Kansas State emerges from the early season showdown looking like the team to beat, and with a decent schedule ahead of them (getting Texas, Tech and Oklahoma State at home) it may be a big year for purple in the Big 12- just perhaps not the purple we'd all prefer. Best Staff Pick: HawkeyedFrog and Purple Wimple both picked the upset, 45-35 and 18-16 respectively, but give the nod to the Wimple with his tight final score (it would have been me if K-State had just been able to hold, arrgh). Next week for Kansas State: Bye, Next week for Oklahoma: Bye.