Football

WILLIAMS: Playing for a NY6 berth; Big 12 picks

Nov 21, 2020; Ames, Iowa, USA; Iowa State quarterback Brock Purdy (15) runs on to the field before their football game against Kansas State at Jack Trice Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Powers-USA TODAY Sports

I’m going to keep this short and sweet.

The “biggest game in Cyclone history” stuff is getting old to me. Frankly, I’m tired of talking about it, and we are sure to be doing the same thing in a couple of weeks. But this is what happens when you keep winning, which is obviously a good thing.

However, allow me to make a brief point as to why Saturday’s game against West Virginia is even more important than last week’s historic win at Texas. 

Multiple sources have led me to believe that if Iowa State wins this one – because of its No. 9 ranking by the College Football Playoff – Iowa State could be looking at a Fiesta Bowl berth even with a loss in the Big 12 Championship Game. Of course, if Iowa State wins that one and the Cyclones would be back in Dallas a few weeks later in the Cotton Bowl. 

So when you put it that way – a possible trip to a New Year’s Six game (the first in program history) being on the line – yeah, the bout vs. West Virginia is monumental for this program. 

Never before has Iowa State Football played a game where with a win, the result could equal such a rich prize. 

Big 12 Predictions 

Iowa State 27, West Virginia 13 — All of the technical signs say to bet on West Virginia here. The Cyclones are coming off of an emotional, physical win last week at Texas. West Virginia has had extra time to prepare and is a very hungry football team. It’s Senior Day. But as I outlined above, I don’t believe that much of the public knows about everything on the line for the Cyclones. That and the identity of this program – in my opinion – is mental toughness. I expect a solid, competitive game but not a letdown from Iowa State. 

TCU 28, Oklahoma State 24 — An upset, but not really. Oklahoma State hasn’t looked like the same team their last few times out. They are beat up and trending downward. TCU seems to have caught a second wind. 

Texas Tech 50, Kansas 17 — Kansas is 0-8 vs. the spread this season. It’ll be 0-9 after Saturday vs. a Tech team that found its offense last week in Stillwater. 

Texas 27, Kansas State 21 — A fascinating football game. Will Tom Herman’s Longhorns throw in the towel after losing the ability to play for a Big 12 championship last week? Or, will they make one last stand for their embattled coach? 

Oklahoma 49, Baylor 17 — I don’t expect Oklahoma being down a few players because of the pandemic to be much of a factor here. Although, Baylor has impressed me down the stretch. Last week’s comeback vs. Kansas State showed some fortitude. 

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