|It wasn't easy, but Kansas State and QB Collin Klein beat Texas at home to win the Big 12 championship. (US Presswire)|
Big 12 scoreboard:
Kansas State 42, Texas 24: Never, ever doubt Kansas State coach Bill Snyder, who put the finishing touches on a masterpiece of a season with a come-from-behind win to claim the school's first Big 12 championship since 2003. That was near the end of Snyder's first tenure as coach, and his second act has not disappointed either. Collin Klein probably won't win the Heisman Trophy, but he almost certainly will be a finalist -- and deservedly so after throwing for 184 yards and a touchdown and adding another 103 yards and two touchdowns on the ground on Senior Night. This one was actually much closer than the score might indicate. Texas led 10-7 at halftime, but missed several chances to build a bigger lead. It paid down the stretch, as QB Case McCoy faded after a hot start. Combined with last week's home loss to TCU, this was an ugly end to the season for the Longhorns. (For more on the game, check out CBSSports.com's Eye on College Football blog)
Oklahoma 24, TCU 17: The Oklahoma Sooners (10-2, 7-2 Big 12) are co-Big 12 champs. The Sooners took care of their part in Fort Worth, but didn't get help from Texas to win the league outright. Landry Jones struggled early and had an interception that led to a TCU touchdown and tied the game 7-7 late in the second quarter. Jones quickly bounced back, tossing a 24-yard touchdown to Jalen Saunders before halftime. The senior quarterback was good enough against a tough TCU defense, throwing for 244 yards and two touchdowns. He got a boost from the running game, as Damien Williams ran for 115 yards and his 66-yard touchdown run put OU up 21-7 in the third quarter. The Horned Frogs (7-5, 4-5) nearly pulled off the comeback, but Josh Boyce could not pull in Trevone Boykin's pass in the end zone on fourth down in the final minute. (For more on the game, check out CBSSports.com's Eye on College Football blog)
Baylor 41, No. 24 Oklahoma State 34: If football had a conference tournament, no one would want to face the Baylor Bears right now. Art Briles' team finished off an impressive end to the regular season by winning four of its last five games, including its second straight win against a ranked opponent. This one was similar to the rest, as Baylor (7-5, 4-5) used a balanced offense -- Nick Florence passed for 296 yards and the Bears racked up 319 rushing yards -- and some timely plays on defense. Eddie Lackey's 26-yard interception return put the Bears up 10-3, a lead they would stretch to 24-3 in the second quarter. Lache Seastrunk capped it off with a 76-yard touchdown run that saw him pull up with a cramp in his quad and still gallop to the end zone. Clint Chelf led the Cowboys (7-5, 5-4) with 333 passing yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. (For more on the game, check out CBSSports.com's Eye on College Football blog)
West Virginia 59, Kansas 10: West Virginia (7-5, 4-5) finished the regular season in much the same way it began. Geno Smith had a nearly flawless performance, completing 23 of 24 passes -- his one mistake a rare interception. Smith threw for 407 yards and three touchdowns in a game that was never close. The usual suspects joined Smith with some impressive stat lines. Stedman Bailey caught 11 passes for 159 yards and two TDs; Tavon Austin caught four passes for 110 yards and added 77 rushing yards and a touchdown; Andrew Buie ran for 100 yards and a TD and Shawne Alston added two rushing touchdowns. The Jayhawks (1-11, 0-9) were haunted by what troubled them all season, as Michael Cummings and Dayne Crist combined to complete only 7 of 16 passes against a defense that came in ranked 119th against the pass.
Play of the day: Seastrunk's touchdown run. Think this guy is fast? He outran Oklahoma State's defense with a bum leg. The Baylor speedster went up the middle and gotten behind the defense when he suddenly pulled up around the Oklahoma State 35-yard line with what the team said was a quad cramp. Seastrunk still managed to skip to the end zone with several defenders giving chase.
Runner up: It looked like Texas was going to push Kansas State all the way to the wire, as the teams traded body blows in the third quarter. But the Wildcats started to blow things open with a 55-yard touchdown pass from Klein to Tyler Lockett early in the fourth quarter to make it 28-17. That gave K-State a bit of breathing room and put more pressure on the Longhorns' offense. Texas didn't score again until the outcome was long decided.
He said what? Seastrunk on his 76-yard touchdown run: “I just laid there in the end zone when I got there. It felt like I was in Call of Duty and someone sniped me."
RapidReports defensive star of the day: Lackey. Baylor's junior linebacker had three interceptions the past two weeks, returning two for touchdowns. Lackey also led the Bears with 15 tackles against Oklahoma State.
RapidReports offensive star of the day: Klein. It wasn't a pretty first half, but the senior more than made up for it down the stretch. Kansas State exploded for 35 points in the second half to come back and cruise to a 42-24 win over Texas. Klein showed why he was the Heisman Trophy frontrunner a few short weeks ago, running for 103 yards and two touchdowns while adding 184 yards and another score through the air. Most importantly, he led K-State to the Big 12 championship.
Runner up: Seastrunk. West Virginia's Geno Smith's numbers were unreal, but you have to consider that it came against a one-win Kansas team. Seastrunk ran for 179 yards and averaged 11.1 yards per carry against an OSU defense that ranked third against the run in the Big 12. Seastrunk ran for 100-plus yards in all of the Bears' final four wins.
Honorable mention: Smith. The Mountaineers put on a show in their home finale, and made the quarterback's Senior Day one to remember. He set a new school record for consecutive completions with 21 in a row and tied the NCAA record for completion percentage in a game with at least 20 pass attempts at 95.8 percent (set by Tennessee's Tee Martin in a 1998 win over South Carolina).
Video highlights via Baylor Athletics
Why you care about these three stats:
1. Baylor's offense is averaging 578.8 yards per game. The Bears led the Big 12 in total offense and will likely finish on top for the second straight season. Most assumed the Bears would take a step back offensively with the departure of Robert Griffin III, but they are only averaging 8.3 yards per game less than last year's team.
2. Oklahoma ran for 177 yards against the Big 12's top rushing defense. The Sooners came in seventh in rushing offense and their ability to run the ball helped Jones, who had an off day compared to his usual production.
3. West Virginia held Kansas and Iowa State to a combined 34 points the last two weeks. Granted, this was against the Big 12's worst two offenses, but it was progress for a defense that was allowing 50.9 points per game in its first seven Big 12 games.
Key number: 8. Number of Big 12 teams that finished with at least seven wins. The conference had four teams finish 4-5 in conference play, which speaks to the parity in the league.
For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis from Big 12 bloggers C.J. Moore and Patrick Southern, follow @CBSSportsBig12 on Twitter. You can also follow C.J. (@cjmoore4) and Patrick (@patricksouthern).