Before we start off, a tip of the cap to Major League Baseball for finally doing the right thing and getting Buck O'Neil into the Hall of Fame. Well done, Buck.
Now, on to another thoroughly unscientific look at the weekend's competition...
Numbers that won't mean anything on Saturday but are fun to look at nonetheless...
Josh Freeman, 187/296, 1927 yards, 8 TD, 7 INT
Jordy Nelson, 68 receptions, 903 yards, 6 TDs
James Johnson, 97 rushes, 561 yards, 5.8 yards per attempt, 8 TDs
Michael Machen, 25/45, 231 yards, 1 TD, 4 INTs
Brandon Whitaker, 68 rushes, 251 yards, 3.7 yards per rush, 1 TD
Brandon Whitaker, 36 receptions, 296 yards, 2 TDs
That's not a joke above, the Bears really are led by a running back in both rushing and receiving.
Games like this are very hard on a fan, or at least they are for me. If the Cats win, well, that's what is expected against a Baylor team that has been inconsistent at best and is now starting its 50th-string quarterback. If we lose, well, better not to think about that.
The best news for K-State is that Baylor is not good at running the ball, as evidenced by that 115th rushing rank. The last two weeks K-State has given up 188 and 329 rushing yards to Colorado and Oklahoma State, respectively. Baylor averages only 72 rushing yards per game.
To me, the only real question regarding this game is whether the Cats show up to play. As I've now said ad nauseum, my only two questions regarding Ron Prince are his ability to get consistent effort out of his team and his commitment to the running game when it's working. I'd like to see a little attitude and a big thumping put on the Bears. Another thing I'd like to see is a photo of Scott Edmonds blocking a Baylor pass in 2003 while being flipped over. The only place I can find it is some stupid image-hosting service that requires a membership. Surely one of my faithful readers has the famous snapshot; if so, please send a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org
Moving on to the rest of the conference...
Nebraska @ Texas (ABC, 2:30 p.m.) A battle of two teams who have underachieved to varying degrees. Texas has defeated, if not dominated, the teams it was supposed to, and lost to the two best teams it has faced thus far. We all know about the disaster that has become Nebraska's season, including narrow escapes against Wake Forest and Ball State, and blowout losses to USC, Oklahoma State and the Texas FranAggies. Nebraska is 1-7 since the Big 12 began against Texas...make it 1-8.
Steers 38, 'Skers 17
KU @ Texas A&M (ESPN2, 6:00 p.m.) Desperate as I am to see KU start losing games, I don't see it happening here. You can say what you want about going into Kyle Field, but the team down the river walked into a hostile rivalry-game atmosphere in Manhattan and got away with a win. Not to mention, if we talk about the things that actually matter, KU only has to stop the Aggie running game to stop the Aggie offense. On the other side, the KU offense is very balanced, and should keep the suspect Aggie defense guessing.
Manginos 31, Franginos 13
Colorado @ Texas Tech (ABC, 11:00 a.m.) Will the parties in Lubbock even stop, or will they just stay out all night until game time? Either way, I predict a very hungover crowd for this one. Two desperate teams square off here, both in danger of falling clean out of the conference race. Colorado has lost two in a row, Tech got run out of Columbia, Mo., on a rail last weekend and is languishing in a tie for fourth in the South. Hugh Charles will run wild for the Buffs, but it won't be enough.
Patch-Eyes 38, Hippies 28
Iowa State @ Missouri (1:00 p.m.) I'd like to say something interesting and funny about this game, but I can't and my beer is empty.
Muzzurrah 48, State of Emergency 13
That's all I got this week. Enjoy this photo of Nebraska's only sack against Mizzou (thanks to AC for the photo!).
Those Huskers will get you, one way or another.