Continuing his tour of the Big 12's campuses since being named the conference's commissioner, Bob Bowlsby stopped in Norman to check in on Oklahoma on Monday. As one might expect, he was bullish on the present and future prospects for the league, but admitted one piece is missing (at least recently): a national championship.
“What enhances national reputation? Winning,” Bowlsby said, according to Tulsa World columnist John E. Hoover. “And it's not just winning our conference championships, it's having our conference champion go on and win national championships. So we're gonna do that.”
Of course, the Big 12 isn't the only league without a crystal football lately, as the SEC has won six national titles in a row. That is a streak Bowlsby said he would be glad to see come to an end.
“We don't want the SEC to win another national championship,” Bowlsby said. “We think the University of Oklahoma can compete at that level and have a chance, and we think there are several others this year that can do similar.”
- Big 12 fans get more chances to help referees: Replays on stadium video boards at Big 12 games will now include more looks at plays some may consider controversial, reports Blair Kerkhoff of the Kansas City Star. A replay can now be shown up to three times, up from once under previous regulations. “It includes plays that are under review, but also foul/penalties that have or haven't been called, timing decisions at the end of game or other situations that would fall under the category of controversial play,” Big 12 associate commissioner for communications Bob Burda said.
- Ninety percent of the time, it works every time: A big part of West Virginia's explosive offense is “package” plays that give multiple options to the players on the field based on what the opposing defense presents. One such play the Mountaineers are fond of is the stick/draw, writes Mike Casazza of the Charleston Daily Mail. It can be a pass or a run, with quick “stick” routes packaged with a draw play in the running game, and it can be run out of essentially any formation. “Throughout the course of the  season, I don't know how many times we ran it, but that play was successful over 90 percent of the time," offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson said.
- Winning the key to a successful return for Oklahoma's Jones: Landry Jones could have jumped to the NFL this past offseason, and some might say he should have. Others believe Jones made a prudent decision to come back to school for his senior season. But Jenni Carlson of The Oklahoman writes neither opinion is totally valid until all the evidence is in -- evidence that will only come as this season's results roll in. Carlson notes that Andrew Luck, who similarly spurned the NFL to play his senior season at Stanford last year, avoided injury and led the Cardinal to success, justifying the decision to return. If Jones wins games, his decision to return should be seen as a similar success.
- Uptempo offense coming to Ames: Iowa State plans to run more of a quick-paced offense this season, which may help the Cyclones score more points -- so long as the team's receivers can handle the pace, writes Andrew Logue of the Des Moines Register. The team's depth chart indicates nine receivers could see action for ISU, something quarterback Steele Jantz sees as a necessity in this year's offense. “I've kind of had an idea we were going to be subbing a lot of guys in and out,” Jantz said. “That's good for us, because we go fast and guys get tired. So, it's nice having fresh legs.”
For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis from Big 12 bloggers C.J. Moore and Patrick Southern, follow @CBSSportsBig12 on Twitter.