Big 12 Bloggers Week Eleven Review
CFN's Big 12 Bloggers put the previous weekend under the microscope, looking for the Lucky 7
JM is Josh Mosley, JP is Jeff Proctor, NR is Nico Roesler, and MV is Mike Vernon
1. OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
JM: Brandon Weeden; QB, Oklahoma State – No team has put as big a home beating on the Texas Tech Raiders as Weeden and the Cowboys did. Another day, another 400 yard, five touchdown performance for the age'd (at least by college standards) quarterback. Weeden likely has Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year honors wrapped up - perhaps even a New York trophy with a dude giving the stiff arm and wearing a leather helmet.
JP: Brandon Weeden; QB, Oklahoma State – Another great performance against a reeling Texas Tech team. Weeden threw for 423 yards and 5 touchdowns, while setting a school record for career TD passes, in Oklahoma State's 66-6 victory over the Red Raiders. He has now brought his season total to 31 touchdowns to go with a 73.1 percent completion percentage. He has also guided the Cowboys to a 10-0 record and the #2 overall ranking in the BCS and both human polls. The Cowboys are only two wins away from playing in their first BCS national title game. Weeden's overall performance this year has him as the front runner for the Heisman Trophy in the eyes of many voters. Not bad for a guy that chose professional baseball as his career path in 2002 after signing with the Yankees.
NR: Collin Klein; QB, Kansas State – Six touchdowns in a gutsy win in which he threw for 281 yards and ran for 103 drew a comparison to another top collegiate quarterback: Tim Tebow. The leadership in four overtimes combined with five rushing touchdowns make that comparison only natural (for this game).
MV: Collin Klein; QB, Kansas State – Klein was brilliantly effective in the Wildcats 4OT 53-50 win over Texas A&M. His six total touchdowns, five of which came on the ground, and 384 total yards of offense led Kansas State to a big win over the Aggies.
2. DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Elliot Coffey; LB, Baylor
JM: Elliot Coffey; LB, Baylor – The Bears had been doing it with offense all year long. But Coffey's two big picks saved them from being on the short end of the league's biggest upset of 2011, the first being Tech's victory in Norman. Two big picks from Coffey kept that from happening.
JP: Elliot Coffey; LB, Baylor – Elliot Coffey shined in Baylor's comeback victory over the Kansas Jayhawks on Saturday. Coffey was credited with 10 tackles and 2 interceptions, including the biggest defensive play of the game in the last minute with Kansas driving to kick a game winning FG. Instead, the Bears were able to take it to overtime and win after a missed two-point conversion.
NR: Elliot Coffey; LB, Baylor – Coffey's two interceptions were critical in Baylor's 21 point comeback against Kansas. The second ended what would've been a game winning drive by the Jayhawks.
MV: Elliot Coffey; LB, Baylor – With less than one minute left in the game, Kansas was on the Baylor 39 yard line and needed just a field goal to take the lead. And that's when Coffey came up with his second interception that helped extend the game into overtime and give Baylor the eventual victory.
3. SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
JM: Trey Barrow; K/P, Missouri – Early season struggles and an injury have sidelined the Tigers usual kicker, All-Big 12 performer Grant Ressel. Barrow has stepped in nicely for the Tigers, nailing a 19-yard field goal and booting eight punts for an average of 49 yards in Missouri's 17-5 win over Texas.
JP: Anthony Cantele; K, Kansas St. – In the game of the week Kansas State kicker Anthony Cantele hit a big 44 yard field goal late in the 4th quarter to push the game into overtime and hit another field goal in the 2nd overtime the keep the game going. Kansas State should be happy it has a kicker it can rely on. Alabama wouldn't mind a trade.
NR: Anthony Cantele; K, Kansas State – There was some terrible kicking this weekend, none of which came from the Wildcats. Cantele came through when his team needed him with two of 38 and 44 yards to extend the game against Texas A&M.
MV: Anthony Cantele; K, Kansas State – With ice running through his veins, Cantele came up big twice with the game on the line Saturday. He nailed a 44-yard field goal to send the game into overtime and then a 38-yard field goal that took the game into its third overtime.
4. COACH OF THE WEEK
JM: Gary Pinkel; Missouri – In the past, Pinkel was perhaps the most vocal coach with respect to the power the Longhorns wielded, but he could never slay the giant on the field. And with the Tigers now headed for the SEC, this would likely be his last chance. Pinkel's offense was steady and his defense stifling in a 17-5 win over Texas. This isn't as phenomenally talented a Texas team as we're used to, but it's good to get a final shot in on the conference bully on your way out.
JP: Mike Gundy; Oklahoma St. – Gundy gets the nod again. As one of two teams that control its own BCS championship destiny, the pressure each week is mounting and each week Gundy has had his team ready for the challenge. This feeling is very new to the Cowboys, but they are playing like they are in this position on a consistent basis. Every since Oklahoma lost to Texas Tech, the team Oklahoma St. destroyed 66-6, the Cowboys have known win out and we are in. Over the years we have seen countless team buckle under the pressure that a target brings, but so far Mike Gundy has keep everyone in control. Their ultimate test will come in Bedlam against the Sooners .
NR: Gary Pinkel; Missouri – A perfect exit for a Missouri team that completely shut down the impressive Longhorn ground game that had kept them in the top 25. Pinkel's defense only allowed three points (two of Texas' came from a safety). It was the first time since 2004 that the Tigers had kept Texas from scoring a touchdown.
MV: Gary Pinkel; Missouri – Anytime Missouri is able to beat Texas, it's a big accomplishment. With the Tigers' soon-to-be departure of the Big 12, this one had to feel good for Pinkel, who finally got his first win over the Longhorns.
5. BEST GAME OF THE WEEK: Kansas State v. Texas A&M
JM: Kansas State v. Texas A&M – This game was all about moxie. The Wildcats had it, and the Aggies continued to lose theirs in crucial moments. Colin Klein put his head down for four touchdowns, including the game-winner, and the Wildcats came back from a wild loss to Oklahoma State last week to put A&M down in a similarly unorthodox fashion. Bill Snyder is Big 12 Coach of the Year by a wide, WIDE margin.
JP: Kansas State v. Texas A&M – Baylor had a nice comeback overtime win, but you can't top the four overtime extravaganza that took place in the Little Apple on Saturday. Texas A&M and Kansas St. have both been involved in some wild games this season and this one is right up there with the others. The outcome wasn't much different than what either team has become used to this season. Texas A&M usually finds itself falling short while Kansas St. has ended up on the winning side more often than not this season in these epic battles. A&M let another late lead slip through their fingers which allowed Kansas St. to force overtime and ultimately win it in the 4th one.
NR: Kansas State v. Texas A&M – Coach Bill Snyder and his Wildcats are now 4-0 in games decided by four points or fewer. Whether the magic has come from the defense in stopping Miami on the goal line or from quarterback Collin Klien who rushed for five touchdowns against Texas A&M, Kansas State has been able to pull off the games that A&M has struggled to finish all year. The Aggies are now 0-3 in games decided by three points or fewer.
MV: Kansas State v. Texas A&M – Four overtimes, 893 yard of offense, and 103-points highlighted this wild one in Manhattan, KS. The Wildcats scored 10-points in the last six minutes of regulation to send it into overtime and the craziness did not stop there. After exchanging scores for three overtime periods, Collin Klein's one yard touchdown run finally ended it, with the the Wildcats coming out on top.
6. BIGGEST SURPRISE OF THE WEEK
JM: Aggies resolve – Teams are supposed to get better as the year goes on. A&M, meanwhile, has lost four winnable games with late-game gaffes. A team with this much talent and experience shouldn't be losing games the way the Aggies are. So I guess I'm surprised by their LACK of resolve.
JP: Missouri Defense – Coming into Saturday's game against Texas the Missouri defense had given up 39 points per game in their last 3 games. Texas entered averaging 440 rushing yards in their previous two games, and while the Texas offense came into the game a little thin, the Missouri defense shut them down from the get go. Texas rushed for just 76 yards on 29 attempts, and it was the first time since 2004 that the Longhorns failed to score a touchdown.
NR: Missouri – Sure the Tigers were at home facing a relatively weak Texas team that had so far survived on defense and a all-or-nothing ground attack, but who really expected the tigers to completely usurp anything the Longhorns attempted and beat Texas for the first time in Gary Pinkel's tenure. Pinkel couldn't topple Texas with a first-round draft pick at QB, but he could with a unproven sophomore in James Franklin at the helm. Figures.
MV: Missorui – Holding a Texas ground attack to 76 yards is no small feat. After year's of Gary Pinkel losing to Texas with an explosive offense, he finally got the win with his defense, as Missorui kept Texas out of the end zone the entire game.
7. BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT OF THE WEEK
JM: Big 12 knee ligaments – It was sad when it happened to Ryan Broyles but I just have to throw a "c'mon man" to Big 12 knees. In one game, two of the Big 12's top rushers — Missouri's Henry Josey and Texas' Fozzy Whittaker — went down with season-ending injuries. So I'm here to say that the knees of the rest of the Big 12's marquee players better shape up and stay strong through January.
JP: Texas – Despite how unbelievably bad Texas Tech has played since beating Oklahoma on the road, the Longhorns were the biggest disappointment of the week. Texas was coming off two impressive wins in a row and looked to be turning a corner, but Saturday's performance against Missouri proved otherwise. The Longhorns rushed for just 76 yards after averaging 440 yards on the ground the each of the last two weeks. They also Foswhitt Whittaker for the remainder of the season to a torn knee. The offense is battling a lot of injuries right, but that shouldn't be an excuse. The Longhorns failed to reach the end zone for the first time since 2004 and only put up 3 offensive points against a team that allowed 42 points and 697 yards in the previous week against Baylor.
NR: Texas Tech – How a team is able to travel to Norman, Oklahoma, and upset a national championship contender one week then completely self destruct in the following weeks is beyond comprehension. Something must be in the water in Lubbock because this infamous, air-it-out offense which averaged 43.4 points-per-game in the first seven weeks hass only put up 33 points in the last three weeks.
MV: Texas Tech – Somehow, the Red Raiders fell to Oklahoma State in worse fashion than lowly Kansas just did a few weeks before. A 66-6 loss is inexcusable nonetheless disappointing, as Texas Tech, sitting just one win shy of bowl eligibility, has got to get back on track in its final two games this season.
Please follow Nico Roesler @nicoroesler, Mike Vernon @m_vernon and Josh Mosley @jmosley6.