Texas football coach Mack Brown reacted the same way most casual fans did when he watched West Virginia’s epic 70-63 victory over Baylor on Saturday.
His jaw dropped.
“They’ve got absolutely no weaknesses,” Brown said of the Mountaineers. “It is amazing watching them. They can put up huge numbers easy and fast.”
Those numbers, especially when combined with Baylor’s offensive production, were staggering. The game featured 1,507 yards, 133 points and too many broken records to mention. Mountaineers’ quarterback Geno Smith was the star of the show, completing 45 of 51 passes for 656 yards and eight touchdowns, but there were plenty of highlight plays to go around.
Brown is now faced with the daunting task of coming up with a defensive strategy capable of stopping West Virginia. The Longhorns host the Mountaineers on Saturday in what could be another thrilling game.
“They may be as good as any offense we’ve seen,” Brown said. “You’re not going to stop them, so you’ve just got to try and slow them down.”
Baylor made the mistake of trying to beat Smith with coverage, sending only three defensive linemen at him on most plays. That gave Smith plenty of time to find open receivers, and he continually hit them with perfect passes. There’s no telling what he would have done in the face of a strong pass rush.
Texas should be able to do better defensively, especially with more than 100,000 fans cheering on the Longhorns in Austin.
But it’s still a difficult challenge.
Snyder thinks outside the bun
It’s well known that Kansas State football coach Bill Snyder has a strange eating schedule, and without a game from last week to reassess he was asked about it during the Big 12’s weekly coach’s teleconference on Monday.
“I go to Taco Bell on occasion,” Snyder said when asked how often he ate at the Mexican fast-food chain, “but I don’t eat lunch anywhere.”
He prefers to save his appetite for a late dinner.
“I have different eating habits,” Snyder said. “My doctor doesn’t like it, but I’ve just grown into some habits. I eat one meal a day and it’s really late at night.”
Ash to the rescue
David Ash proved himself in a pressure-packed situation on Saturday. Not only did the Texas quarterback throw for 304 yards and three touchdowns against Oklahoma State, he led his team to victory on a game-winning drive in the fourth quarter. He showed great poise on a fourth-and-long completion that led to the Longhorns’ go-ahead touchdown.
Outside the top 25?
Texas Tech is undefeated with two road victories under its belt, but the Red Raiders still find themselves outside the Associated Press Top 25. That is a bit puzzling considering they picked up a quality victory over previously unbeaten Iowa State on Sunday. They get another chance to prove themselves this weekend against Oklahoma at home. Beat the Sooners, and Texas Tech will definitely break into the top 25.
Touchdown or fumble?
Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy was still upset about the touchdown Joe Bergeron scored to give Texas a win over the Cowboys on Saturday. Replays showed Bergeron might not have had control of the football as he dove into the end zone.
“My personal opinion was that it was a fumble,” Gundy said. “But that doesn’t go very far.”
K-State will take on Iowa State in Ames at 11 a.m. on Oct 13. The game will be televised by FX. Kansas will host Oklahoma State at 2:30 p.m. on the same day, with FSN televising the action.
Geno Smith: Threw more touchdowns than incomplete passes against Baylor.
Joseph Randle: Rushed for nearly 200 yards and two touchdowns against Texas.
David Ash: Showed maturity on game-winning drive against Oklahoma State.
Texas Tech’ defense: Held Iowa State to 189 yards.
Big 12 pass defenses: Defending high-powered offenses is hard, but can no one keep a receiver in front of them?
Art Briles: When Baylor needed the ball late, he tried to get a defensive stop instead of an onside kick. Why? West Virginia had already scored 70 points.
Steele Jantz: Didn’t give Iowa State a chance against Texas Tech.
Big 12 officials: Needed to take a longer look at the Longhorns’ final touchdown against Oklahoma State.
What to watch, what to avoid
Must-see game: West Virginia at Texas
Worth watching: Oklahoma at Texas Tech, Iowa State at TCU
If there’s nothing better to do: Kansas at Kansas State
Big 12 power rankings
1. Kansas State (4-0): Wildcats are always ready for Sunflower Showdown.
2. West Virginia (4-0): Can the Mountaineers’ offense be stopped?
3. Texas (4-0): Looks like the Longhorns’ quarterback troubles are over.
4. Texas Tech (4-0): Defense may be as good as advertised.
5. TCU (4-0): Nothing impressive yet, but TCU is undefeated.
6. Oklahoma (2-1): Sooners haven’t won in Lubbock since 2003.
7. Baylor (3-1): If Bears keep scoring 63 points, they will be fine.
8. Iowa State (3-1): Didn’t do enough on offense to beat Texas Tech.
9. Oklahoma State (2-2): Best .500 team in college football?
10. Kansas (1-3): Charlie Weis hopes for competitive game at K-State.