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Big 12 announces five weekday games for 2013

By Chip Patterson | College Football/Basketball Writer

Texas will host Texas Tech on Thanksgiving night in Austin. (USATSI)
Texas will host Texas Tech on Thanksgiving night in Austin. (USATSI)

Texas and Texas Tech each added a second Thursday night game to their schedule this week when the Big 12 announced their weekday lineup for the 2013 season.

Previously, the Thanksgiving night meeting of in-state rivals was the only Thursday night game on the Big 12 schedule. The league's media rights deal requires four Thursday night games to be shown annually on the ESPN or Fox platform of networks.

In addition to the Thanksgiving showdown in Austin, the league announced three more Big 12 matchups to be held on Thursday night.

TCU at Texas Tech (Sept. 12)

Texas at Iowa State (Oct. 3)

Oklahoma at Baylor (Nov. 7)

Kansas State's season opener against North Dakota State was also announced for Friday, Aug. 30. The Big 12 deal normally calls for a Sunday game on Labor Day weekend, but a league spokesperson explained to the The Dallas Morning News that Fox opted to move the game to Friday night instead.

Each of the Thursday night games offers an extra bit of intrigue for Big 12 fans. The Red Raiders' Sept. 12 date against TCU will open the Big 12 schedule for both teams, while Oklahoma's trip to Baylor will be one of the last games played in Floyd Casey Stadium. The school will tear down the old stadium and build a new Baylor Stadium connected to campus for the start of the 2014 season.

Looking ahead to 2013, the Big 12 is the league with arguably the most unanswered questions. Kliff Kingsbury has reignited the buzz around Texas Tech while teams like TCU and Baylor should be considered as contenders alongside traditional powers Oklahoma and Texas. Will Mack Brown's efforts to turnaround the Longhorns finally come to fruition in 2013? Can Kansas State repeat their success without Collin Klein?

Thankfully, we don't have to answer these questions now. But looking ahead to the conference schedule does remind us that it could be another wild season in the Big 12.

For more college football news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnCFB on Twitter, subscribe to our RSS Feed, college football newsletter, and get the Eye On College Football Podcast from iTunes. You can follow Chip Patterson on Twitter here: @Chip_Patterson.

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