The first week of college football is in the books and it was a wild one for the Big-12 conference. From near upsets against powerhouses to yet another loss to a FCS school, the conference confirmed preseason beliefs. Let’s take a look at how the Big-12 fared this weekend.
#4 Oklahoma (1-0, 0-0) Louisiana Tech (0-1, 0-0): 48-16 Memorial Stadium, Norman, OK
Oklahoma and Bob Stoops showed why they are primed for a run at the Big-12 title this season. The Sooners scored 31 straight to start the game, conceding only a last second field goal in the second quarter to lead 31-3 at half. Oklahoma had a strong third quarter extending their lead to 41-3 before being outscored in the fourth quarter 13-7. Trevor Knight played well for the Sooners completing 19 of 34 passes for 253 yards. He threw a touchdown as well as an interception. The running game looked good as Oklahoma ran for 183 yards on 40 carries, five of those for touchdowns. Semaje Perine led the team with 77 yards and one touchdown on 13 carries. Keith Ford and Alex Ross added two touchdowns each. Ford led the team in receiving with 65 yards on four receptions. Sterling Shepard had the lone touchdown reception along with 49 yards receiving. Cody Sokol was the standout for Louisiana Tech throwing for 191 yards and two touchdowns. The Sooners will be on the road at Tulsa next weekend.
#10 Baylor (1-0, 0-0) SMU (0-1, 0-0): 45-0 McLane Stadium, Waco, TX
Baylor looked just as good as they did last year when they won the Big-12. Coach Art Briles has to be pleased with a 45-0 rout of SMU, but also with his team’s execution. The Bears had 574 yards of offense, 313 coming through the air. They also had 31 first downs and were 10-20 on third down conversions and 2-2 on fourth down conversions. Bryce Petty threw for 161 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions completing 13 of 23 passes. Backups Seth Russell and Chris Johnson saw playing time as Petty was knocked out of the game with a back injury after an early hit. He’s listed day-to-day with two cracked bones in his spine. Shock Linwood led the team in rushing with 89 yards on 16 carries with a touchdown. Silas Nacita and Petty also rushed for a touchdown. Davion Hall led the team with 86 yards on seven receptions. Jay Lee, KD Cannon, and Tre’Von Armstead had the three touchdown catches for Baylor. Even more impressive than the offense was Baylor’s defense. The Bears gave up only 67 yards of total offense, keeping SMU in negative yardage rushing at -26 yards. Baylor will have another tune-up game against the Northwestern State Demons next weekend.
#20 Kansas State (1-0, 0-0) SF Austin (0-1, 0-0): 55-16 Bill Snyder Family Stadium, Manhattan, KS
Kansas State’s rout of SF Austin was not the cleanest blowout, but there were a lot of positives for the Wildcats. To start off, Jake Waters looked sharp. He threw for 223 yards and two touchdowns completing 19 of 28 passes and only one interception. He also led Kansas State with 17 carries and 55 yards. The Wildcats ran for 240 yards with six players rushing for over 24 yards each, including Charles Jones who tied Waters with a game-high 55 yards on the ground. It was a team effort receiving the ball as nine players found themselves on the stat sheet with catches. No player had over 50 yards receiving, but Kody Cook, Steven West, and Tyler Lockett each had a touchdown reception. The defense looked good at times, holding SF Austin to 294 yards, 225 of which came through the air. It was typical Kansas State football as they had a time of possession of 37:45. A positive for the Wildcats would be their 8-14 on third down conversions as well as 2-2 on fourth down conversions. The Wildcats will open Big-12 play next weekend on the road at Iowa State.
Texas (1-0, 0-0) North Texas (0-1, 0-0): 38-7 Royal Texas Memorial Stadium, Austin, TX
It was a solid opener for Charlie Strong and his Texas defense. The Longhorns kept North Texas to 94 total yards of offense, including only 15 passing yards. The offense was not flashy but did put some points on the board. David Ash came out a little rusty completing 19 of 34 passes for 190 yards. He had one touchdown and no interceptions but only recorded a QBR of 34.0. Strong announced that the junior will not play against BYU after he suffered headaches and dizziness once again. Ash missed all but three games last season mostly due to concussion symptoms. The rushing game looked good with running backs Johnathan Gray and Malcom Brown rushing for 82 and 65 yards respectively. Brown had two rushing touchdowns and Ash added one as well diving for the pylon on a fourth and one rollout. John Harris stood out at receiver catching seven passes for 110 yards and a touchdown. Jaxon Shipley caught six passes for 43 yards. The Longhorns and sophomore quarterback Tyrone Swoops will take on BYU at home next weekend.
TCU (1-0, 0-0) Samford (0-1, 0-0): 48-14 Amon G. Carter Stadium, Fort Worth, TX
Trevone Boykin made his impression felt completing 29 of 41 passes for 320 yards and two touchdowns along with a rushing touchdown against Samford. The running game struggled a bit with no one breaking the 50 yard mark. It was not for lack of trying as TCU had 46 rushes for 200 yards, a 4.3 average yard per carry. The passing game under Boykin was impressive. TCU had 13 players with a reception for 355 yards. Kolby Listenbee had 76 yards along with two touchdowns. Ty Slanina and David Porter were next in line with 60 and 54 yards receiving respectively as well as a touchdown by Porter. The defense looked alright giving up only 143 yards. Coach Gary Patterson still enjoys the idea of having a two quarterback system after seeing injuries to Petty and Ash, even though Matt Joeckel completed only half of his passes throwing a touchdown but also a pick-six. The Horned Frogs will welcome Minnesota to town on Sept. 13 after their bye next weekend.
Texas Tech (1-0, 0-0) Central Arkansas (0-1, 0-0): 42-35 Jones AT&T Stadium, Lubbock, TX
It was a frightening opener for the Red Raiders. Although they never trailed in the second half, Central Arkansas stuck around and made things interesting, challenging a shaky Texas Tech defense. The offense played well except for turning the ball over. Davis Webb threw for 452 yards and four touchdowns completing 39 of 52 passes, but also threw two interceptions. Texas Tech ran the ball well, especially with DeAndre Washington who had 20 rushes for 104 yards and a touchdown. Justin Stockton also ran one in for six. Bradley Marquez carried the team with 11 catches for 184 yards and two touchdowns. Reginald Davis and Jordan Davis each recorded a touchdown catch as well. UCA seemed to always have an answer having three guys record a rushing touchdown, and putting up over 400 yards of offense. The Red Raiders were able to avoid an early season slip up, however. Texas Tech will try to knock off the rest of the rust and figure out their defense when they take on UTEP next Saturday.
West Virginia (0-1, 0-0) #2 Alabama (1-0, 0-0): 23-33 Georgia Dome, Atlanta, GA
West Virginia showed they can hang with the big boys playing a tough Alabama team close throughout the game. Clint Trickett tore apart the Crimson Tide defense throwing for 365 yards and one touchdown on 29 of 45 passing. The main story was missed opportunities for the West Virginia offense. They were able to move the ball—at least through the air—but Alabama did what it does best and that is keeping opponents out of the end zone. Other than the touchdown pass from Trickett to Kevin White, the defense kept West Virginia from scoring other than with their kicker. West Virginia’s other touchdown came from Mario Alford’s 100 yard kick return. West Virginia only gained 28 yards rushing on 24 rushes, a dismal 1.2 yards per rush. The defense struggled against the pro-style offense of Alabama. Blake Sims threw for 250 yards but the Mountaineers were able to intercept him once and kept him out of the end zone. The running back duo of T.J. Yeldon and Derrick Henry were too much for West Virginia as they rushed for 126 and 113 yards respectively. Yeldon scored two touchdowns for the Tide and Henry added one as well. Amari Cooper led Alabama in receiving with 130 yards. West Virginia will play Towson next Saturday.
Oklahoma State (0-1, 0-0) #1 Florida State (1-0, 0-0): 31-37 AT&T Stadium, Arlington, TX
After giving up 17 straight to the defending champions to start the game, Oklahoma State was able to fight and give Florida State a bit of a scare in the season opener. J.W. Walsh threw for 203 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Walsh also led the team in rushing with 51 yards on 11 carries, two that went for touchdowns. Rennie Childs and Tyreek Hill ran for just over 40 yards each and Desmond Roland added a rushing touchdown. David Gidden had only two catches but had 74 yards along with the lone touchdown reception. Heisman winner Jameis Winston would prove to be too much for the Cowboys, throwing for 370 yards. He threw one touchdown pass but was intercepted twice by the Cowboys. Rashad Greene was Winston’s go to man catching 11 passes for 203 yards and a 50-yard touchdown pass to put the Seminoles up two scores. Winston also had a 28-yard touchdown run, his longest of his career. Oklahoma State will host Missouri State next Saturday.
Iowa State (0-1, 0-0) North Dakota St. (1-0, 0-0): 14-34 Jack Trice Stadium, Ames, IA
It was a game people knew would be tough for the Cyclones, but a blowout in the season opener is tough for many reasons. Not only did the Cyclones give up 34 straight after seeming in control and getting out to a 14-0 start, but Iowa State also lost two key players for the rest of the season due to injury. Center Tom Farniok and receiver Quenton Bundrage each suffered knee injuries. In what seemed like a must win game for the Cyclones if they wanted any chance at making a bowl game, Aaron Wimberly started hot running in a 16-yard run and a three-yard run for touchdowns. The offense failed to get anything going after that as Wimberly finished with only 38 yards. Quarterback Sam Richardson threw two interceptions and finished 20 of 31 for 151 yards. Richardson led the team in rushing with 58 yards. North Dakota State quarterback Carson Wentz completed 18 of 28 passes for 204 yards as running back John Crockett ran three touchdowns in and added 138 yards rushing on 17 carries. Chase Morlock ran for 81 yards and a touchdown on six carries. It does not get much easier for Iowa State as they host Kansas State for their Big-12 opener on Saturday.
Bye: Kansas (0-0, 0-0) Plays Southeast Missouri State on Saturday.
What did you think of the Big-12 Conference in Week 1? Were you impressed by West Virginia and Oklahoma State, or do “moral victories” mean little to you? Let us know in the comments!