First, the standings:
And now, a question: has the gap between the North and South divisions narrowed? Totally closed? Before you answer, consider that Colorado beat Oklahoma and Texas Tech, Kansas State beat Texas, Kansas beat A&M, and Missouri beat Texas Tech (by 31). It's certainly a far more competitive conference than it has been in some time.
On to this week's results.
Kansas 19 Texas A&M 11
Check out the comments on my preview of this game - both noted their belief that A&M was going to win the game. Despite the numbers indicating Kansas superiority, there was a perception that A&M was "more physical" and might "demolish" the Jayhawks.
Given Kansas' history in the conference, it's not at all surprising, but the doubters have to set aside their skepticism at this point: the Jayhawks are a good football team. The Jayhawks outgained the Aggies 407-318, but much of A&M's yards came in the fourth quarter when they tried to pass their way back into the game. At that point, the Aggies trailed 19-0 and had been whipped silly at their own game - running the football. On the evening, Kansas outrushed A&M 227-74.
For the Frandstand, last night's loss probably eliminated whatever slim hope there was that he might keep his job. For Kansas, they remain in control of their destiny, with games remaining vs Nebraska, at Okie State, vs Iowa State, and vs Missouri.
Colorado 31 Texas Tech 26
This score in Boulder wouldn't have surprised me, but I thought Texas Tech would be a tougher out in Lubbock. Not so, as Graham Harrell was intercepted four times and the Texas Tech defense struggled once again. Colorado rushed for 217 yards, Cody Hawkins passed for two touchdowns, and the Buffs protected the football (0 turnovers).
They were the more solid team from start to finish yesterday, while Texas Tech remains entirely too one dimensional (just six running plays called on the day).
Missouri 42 Iowa State 28
The Tigers weren't at their sharpest yesterday, but they eventually wored down Iowa State after getting a big boost on a fumble recovered in the end zone for a touchdown. If the Tigers want to get into the final weekend of the regular season with a chance to upend Kansas, they'll have to be solid for three straight weeks as they travel to Boulder to take on Colorado, host Texas A&M, and visit Manhattan to play K-State. If Kansas doesn't trip up before the final weekend, Missouri must win all three to have a chance to win the division with a victory in Lawrence.
Kansas State 51 Baylor 13
Josh Freeman accounted for five touchdowns (three passing, two rushing) as they Wildcats easily dispatched of Baylor. KSU really needed to beat Oklahoma State last week to stay relevant in the North Division race; as is, they'll have to sit and wait for help. They do get Iowa State and Nebraska next, which should bump them to 5-2 in conference play before hosting Missouri. With a loss to Kansas head-to-head, though, they're all but finished in the division race.