Big 12 Offenses Through Eight Weeks: How Have They Changed from a Year Ago?

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Big 12 Offenses Through Eight Weeks: How Have They Changed from a Year Ago?
(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

2013 is a year of opposites, it seems. Black is white. Up is down. Lines are blurred. The Big 12 is not an offensive conference. 

For the most part, anyway. Baylor and Texas Tech remain the Big 12's flag carriers when it comes to scoring points and racking up yards. Perhaps not coincidentally, the Bears and Red Raiders are the two remaining undefeated teams in the conference. 

But most of the Big 12 has regressed—significantly, in some cases—on offense.  

First and foremost, this is cyclical. Roughly half of the teams in the Big 12 were replacing veteran quarterbacks. For some teams, like Texas and Oklahoma, the offense is better suited for running the ball. Other offenses, like Kansas and TCU, can't anything going. 

Secondly, defenses across the conference have been better. Baylor's defense, for example, has been under the radar because of all the focus the offense gets. Yet, it is a statistically sound group. 

So just how many changes have Big 12 offenses undergone? Here's a look at how each team is doing in major offensive categories through Week 8 compared to that same time a year ago. 

 

Baylor

Baylor's major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 64.7 ppg (1st) 714.3 ypg (1st) 300.3 ypg (7th) 414 ypg (3rd)
2012 48 ppg (3rd) 574.2 ypg (3rd) 183. 5 ypg (5th) 390.7 ypg (1st)

NCAA

The Bears are one of the few teams that have actually gotten better on offense over the past year. Then again, not too many teams have been on a run like Baylor has over the past 11 games. Quarterback Bryce Petty has had no issue replacing Nick Florence. Meanwhile, Baylor's skill players are as good as any team's in the country. 

 

Iowa State

Iowa State's major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 25.2 ppg (86th) 351.8 ypg (101st) 131.8 ypg (97th) 220 ypg (73rd)
2012 23.6 ppg (88th) 342.6 ypg (101st) 137 ypg (86th) 205.6 ypg (86th)

NCAA

The Cyclones have issues along the offensive line, but there are two playmakers emerging: running back Aaron Wimberly and wide receiver Quenton Bundrage. All in all, though, Iowa State's major offensive stats aren't terribly different from what they were a year ago. So, why is ISU 1-5 when it was 4-2 in mid-October, 2012?

Likely because of its defense, which hasn't been that stingy. 

 

Kansas

Kansas' major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 18.3 ppg (112th) 287.7 ypg (118th) 130 ypg (99th) 157.8 ypg (112th)
2012 17.3 ppg (114th) 368.6 ypg (89th) 180 ypg (49th) 118.4 ypg (103rd)

NCAA

The Jayhawks have been brutally bad on offense this year, but that didn't suddenly develop. The passing game hasn't progressed much with new quarterback Jake Heaps—the wide receivers having caught a whopping two touchdown passes. (Although, no wide receiver caught a touchdown pass in 2012. So, progress?)

There's simply not that much talent on that side of the ball, save for running back Tony Pierson. 

 

Kansas State

Kansas State's major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 30.2 ppg (60th) 400.3 ypg (75th) 184.2 ypg (49th) 216.2 ypg (76th)
2012 42.9 ppg (T-10th) 434.9 ypg (42nd) 233.9 ypg (14th) 201 ypg (90th)

NCAA

Clearly, Kansas State's biggest drop-offs have been in points per game and rushing yards per game. It wasn't until a Week 6 loss to Oklahoma State that the Wildcats began to find their identity on offense. Though K-State lost again in Week 7 to Baylor, the 'Cats tallied over 300 yards on the ground. Now that K-State has found its running game, some conference wins may begin to follow. This is also an offense that's had uncharacteristic problems turning the ball over. 

 

Oklahoma 

Oklahoma's major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 30 ppg (62nd) 422 ypg (60th) 228 ypg (18th) 194.1 ypg (97th)
2012 44.7 ppg (5th) 488.2 ypg (17th) 199.7 ypg (34th) 288.5 ypg (26th)

NCAA

Few Big 12 teams have had a bigger identity flip than Oklahoma. Before beating Kansas 34-19 in Week 8, Oklahoma had not scored more than 20 points in a Big 12 game. Through eight weeks in 2012, the Sooners more than doubled that in the points-per-game category.

OU has shifted its offensive identity to a more run-based attack. Zone read and option elements were more prominent when Trevor Knight was the starting quarterback, but OU has been more power run oriented since Blake Bell took over the starting job. Not surprisingly, rushing numbers are up and passing numbers are down. 

 

Oklahoma State

Oklahoma State's major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 35.7 ppg (32nd) 440.2 ypg (50th) 136.5 (96th) 303.7 ypg (21st)
2012 45.7 ppg (4th) 605.3 ypg (1st) 254.3 ypg (8th) 351 ypg (7th)

NCAA

Talk about going backward. Oklahoma State's offensive drop-off has been astounding. The Cowboys have two of the three quarterbacks who started a year ago—Clint Chelf and J.W. Walsh—but both have been inconsistent. There's virtually no running game either, which has been an important, yet underrated, part of the Pokes' offense in years past.

There are a myriad of reasons as to why Oklahoma State isn't an offensive juggernaut, but one of them has to be the change at offensive coordinator. Todd Monken is gone (as the head coach of Southern Miss) and Mike Yurcich is in.

Things simply aren't the same. 

 

TCU

TCU's major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 25.3 ppg (85th) 330.3 ypg (109th) 139.1 ypg (94st) 191.1 ypg (100th)
2012 36 ppg (30th) 441.7 ypg (37th) 173 ypg (54th) 268.7 ypg (39th)

NCAA

There are a couple of factors that contribute to TCU's offensive woes that don't show up in the stat sheet. First, quarterback Casey Pachall started four of the first seven games for the Frogs in 2012. As a result, TCU's offensive numbers by the end of the year were noticeably worse. Secondly, TCU hasn't been the same since offensive coordinator Justin Fuente left to become the head coach at Memphis. 

In any case, the Frogs have regressed big time. Quarterback Trevone Boykin has been running for his life and there's no rhythm or chemistry in either the run or passing game. If the offense could play a first half anywhere near as good as it does the second, TCU would be bowl eligible already. 

 

Texas

Texas' major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 33 ppg (46th) 456.7 ypg (35th) 202.7 ypg (35th) 254 ypg (48th)
2012 44.4 ppg (6th) 457.3 ypg (31st) 196 ypg (36th) 261.3 ypg (44th)

NCAA

Texas coach Mack Brown has stressed the importance of a running game for the past three years. It came to fruition in the biggest way possible in Week 7 when the Longhorns ran up and down the field on Oklahoma in a 36-20 win.

Now that the defense isn't a total liability, the balanced attack on offense has Texas looking like one of the more complete teams in the Big 12—even without starting quarterback David Ash. 

Running the ball is UT's strength, so that number could go up as the season progresses. 

 

Texas Tech

Texas Tech's major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 41.1 ppg (14th) 548.1 ypg (6th) 131.7 ypg (98th) 416.4 ypg (2nd)
2012 42.9 ppg (T-10th) 516.1 ypg (11th) 154.4 ypg (76th) 361.7 ypg (7th)

NCAA

Interestingly enough, Texas Tech's major offensive numbers aren't much different from a year ago. What is different is Tech is putting up those numbers with two freshmen quarterbacks: Baker Mayfield and Davis Webb. Specifically, Webb has been fantastic in two starts, throwing for nearly 900 yards. 

Call that the Kliff Kingsbury effect. The first-year head coach has his team at 7-0 and primed for a Big 12 title run. Can his freshmen quarterbacks get the job done down the stretch? 

 

West Virginia

West Virginia's major offensive stats
Scoring offense Total offense Rushing offense Passing offense
2013 24.4 ppg (91st) 399.1 ypg (77th) 152.6 ypg (83rd) 246.6 ypg (56th)
2012 41.1 ppg (13th) 500.7 ypg (14th) 148.7 ypg (78th) 352 ypg (6th)

NCAA

Just how important were quarterback Geno Smith and receivers Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey to West Virginia? The Mountaineers have experienced one of the biggest offensive drop-offs in the Big 12, if not the biggest, because of new faces. 

Even the most talented player on the offense, Houston transfer running back Charles Sims, has yet to put up outrageous numbers. The offensive line has been a problem, and quarterback health and inexperience at the receiver position have also been concerns. As head coach Dana Holgorsen is finding out, starting over comes with serious growing pains. 

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