And So It Begins: Week 1 Big 12 Predictions

Eric MariottContributor ISeptember 1, 2009

AUSTIN, TX - OCTOBER 25:  Head coach Mike Gundy of the Oklahoma State Cowboys during play against the Texas Longhorns at Texas Memorial Stadium on October 25, 2008 in Austin, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

          Authors Note: Here are my weekly Big 12 Predictions for the week of Sept. 5.  Please bear in mind that these predictions are based in order of the helmet schedule pinned up in my office.  This will be published on the Oklahoma State page at and on my Facebook page under notes.  This is based on the format I used during the 2008 season at Those interested in seeing my SEC picks should visit my profile or the Alabama page at
          Here we are finally, week one of the new season.  This week should yield several wins for the Big 12 and give many teams opportunities to have undefeated seasons going into conference play.  There are only about 4 games of any consequence scheduled this week, but they should provide great entertainment. 
Colorado vs. Colorado State  (Sunday, September 6, 7 PM ET, not televised)  Ahh, nothing says College Football like coming out the gate with an in state rivalry.  Colorado on paper should be a favored team, but I think this should be a good game to watch especially for a fan or alum of any of the two teams.
My pick:  Colorado by 10. 
Iowa State vs. North Dakota State  (Thursday, September 3, 7 PM ET, not televised)  Iowa State lost their ‘quality’ coach Gene Chisik so he could go on to greener pastures down at Auburn and try to win the SEC by way of assistant coaching and lots of luck.  Enough punching jabs at Auburn, we shall see if coaching was really the issue with Iowa State or have they turned over a new leaf.  On paper this game is potentially a draw, but I see Iowa State being pumped up and pulling it out. 
My pick:  24-14 Iowa State.  Something needs to go right in Ames this year. 
Kansas vs. Northern Colorado  (September 4, 7 PM ET, not televised)  The best part of watching the season begin is seeing matchups like this.  This should help Kansas get out the gate with a ‘W’ and see what they can do this season. 
My Pick:  Kansas by at least a touchdown. 
Kansas State vs. UMass  (September 5, 7:10 PM ET, not televised)  No friends, this isn’t a NCAA basketball tourney game, this is a real football game.  A nice home game for Kansas State potentially. 
My Pick:  Kansas State by 13. 
Missouri vs. Illinois (September 5, 3:40 PM ET, ESPN, and ESPN 360)  Hot interstate rivalry in St. Louis coming up on Saturday.  Should be a Mizzou home game in retrospect, but expect a full dome for this one. 
My Pick:  Mizzou by 6.  I hope my friend, whose name is also Eric in Missouri reads this. 
Nebraska vs. Florida Atlantic  (September 5, 7:00 PM ET, not televised)  The Cornhuskers will be opening their season by entertaining Florida Atlantic.  What comes out of this game:  after Florida Atlantic loses, they can at least say they still have a beach to go to. 
My Pick:  Nebraska by two touchdowns. 
Baylor at Wake Forest   (September 5, 3:30 PM, ET, and ESPN Gameplan)  Not the most exciting game on the schedule, unless of course you are a Wake Forest fan.  Again, looks like a March Madness matchup. 
My Pick:  Wake by 8. 
Oklahoma vs. BYU (September 5, 7:00 PM, ESPN,  Two ranked teams, a neutral site, and a new toy to play with called Cowboy Stadium.  Don’t get excited on the screen height:  neither  team has a very experienced punter in their stable. 
My Pick:  Boomer Sooner by 6.  Dallas is in reality a home field advantage for OU compared to BYU. 
Oklahoma State vs. Georgia  (September 5, 3:30 PM ET, ABC, ESPN Gameplan)  Potentially the biggest game in the conference this week with a Big 12/SEC shootout in the newly renovated T. Boone Pickens Stadium, located in God’s country AKA Stillwater, Oklahoma.  This game could make or break both teams as the smack talk has been heating up between two great schools that have good coaching.  For Mike Gundy, it’s a chance to jump out and make a statement and show the Big 12 South that this season could be a footrace between THREE teams instead of the typical OU/Texas battles.  For Mark Richt and Georgia, it’s really do or die.  Georgia MUST make all of their non-conference games a victory to do any damage in the SEC East considering the cupcake non-conference schedule that Florida has put together.  Richt’s lack of the killer instinct will be a factor in this game, and the OSU fans will also be a factor.  The Big 12 is tired of hearing how the SEC is the better conference and the fans are sick of it too.  Expect a dogfight for the entire game.
My pick:  Ok State by 13 pts.
Texas vs. Louisiana-Monroe  (September 5, 7 PM ET, no television as of yet scheduled)  This game should make OU fans a little upset and give them a reason to gripe about non-conference schedules.  Louisiana-Monroe fans should be glad their team volunteered for suicide duty:  the proceeds from this game will pay for the rest of their season.  Mack Brown is going to blow this thing wide open and make a statement to the rest of the country.  The real prediction for this game isn’t going to be about who wins, it will be about how many La-Monroe kids get carted off on stretchers. 
My pick:  Texas by 35 pts.
Texas A&M vs New Mexico (September 5, 7:00 PM ET, not televised)  Mike Sherman is sitting on what we like to call…The Hot Seat.  He will need to scramble up several wins this season to keep himself from the soup kitchen next season, and this is one that Texas A&M SHOULD win. 
My pick: Aggies by 6. 
Texas Tech vs. North Dakota
There is where we are for Week One.  Please feel free to comment and leave your picks.  I will post my score next week with Week Two picks. 
Roll Tide.  Go Pokes.