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  • Published Tuesday, August 30, 2011, at 12:08 a.m.

One position where Snyder sees less competition than others is linebacker. He said Arthur Brown, Emmanuel Lamur and Tre Walker have separated themselves as obvious starters with Alex Hrebec and Blake Slaughter providing depth behind them.

Collin Klein has also met little resistance in his quest to become K-State's starting quarterback, but Snyder said he needs to continue pushing himself to stay ready.

"There is probably a little plateau that has taken place maybe in the last week or so," Snyder said. "But he's a very conscientious young man and he's always very cognizant of the good things he's doing and the things not quite so good and what he needs to improve upon."

Friday night fight

College football doesn't get started in earnest until Saturday, but the Big 12's game of the week may come on Friday. That's when 14th-ranked TCU heads to Waco, Texas, for a nationally-televised game.

The Horned Frogs beat Baylor easily in Fort Worth last year, but the Bears are only a six-point underdog this time around.

"There is some hidden excitement and anticipation for this game as maybe opposed to another," Baylor coach Art Briles said. "But the thing about first games of the year, for any team or opponent, they are always exciting and they're big games. We just happen to be opening up here against a quality opponent."

He's back

Texas junior Garrett Gilbert has retained his job as the Longhorns' starting quarterback after an offseason of speculation.

This looks like a make-or-break year for Gilbert, a former five-star recruit. After filling in for an injured Colt McCoy in the national championship game as a freshman, many assumed he was on his way to a strong sophomore season. He instead threw 17 interceptions and UT won five games.

That opened the door for seemingly every quarterback on the roster to take his place. He beat them out for the job, but only by a slim margin. Coach Mack Brown will replace him if he fails to move the offense. Good thing his first game is against Rice.

The rest is nothing

Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops was asked how he handled an offseason that contained pressure as the nation's top-ranked team, exposure with ESPN cameras dropping in on practice and the death of linebacker Austin Box.

"The hard part is Austin, not having him with us," Stoops said. "The rest of it is nothing."

In memory of Box, the Sooners will wear decals with his No. 12 on their helmets this season.

Ranking the openers

Must see: TCU at Baylor.

Worth watching: Tulsa at Oklahoma, SMU at Texas A&M, Miami (Ohio) at Missouri.

If you're desperate: McNeese State at Kansas, Eastern Kentucky at Kansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette at Oklahoma State, Rice at Texas, Texas State at Texas Tech, Northern Iowa at Iowa State.

Say what?

"We'll earn our spurs."

—Texas Tech coach Tommy Tuberville on the difficulty of playing 11 consecutive weeks following an open Saturday, Sept. 10.

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