NCAA Football 2017: Big 12 Game Recap Week 1
The time has come. College football is back for those who enjoy it. There are some teams who have come in with returning coaches and players, then some who have yet to make their debut. For the Big 12, that changes now. Going into the season, there were high expectations for teams with both returning names and new names alike. While the opening week is not a proper look at pretenders versus contenders, the opportunity is there for a good first impression. So, who delivered on a good first impression? Who left a head scratching first impression?
Oklahoma State vs. University of Tulsa: OSU wins 59-24
Oklahoma State and the University of Tulsa started off the slate of Big 12 games this past Thursday. In what would be an all-out annihilation, all of Oklahoma State’s big names showed up to play. Mason Rudolph completed 20 out of 24 passing attempts, had 303 passing yards, and three touchdown completions. Rudolph would finish the night with a QBR of 96.7.
Rudolph’s favorite receiver would end up being a James Washington. Washington would lead the Cowboys of Oklahoma State with six receptions, 145 receiving yards, and would end his night with two touchdown catches. Washington would have the longest catch of 77 yards as well. Running back Justice Hill led OSU in rushing, with 132 yards, 1 rushing touchdown, and longest rush of 32 yards.
Oklahoma State had its self a field day with the Tulsa Golden Hurricanes. For those fans of Oklahoma State, this game did not disappoint. Neither did the Oklahoma Sooners against the UTEP Miners.
UTEP Miners At Oklahoma Sooners: Oklahoma defeats UTEP 56-7
In the debut of the new head coach, Lincoln Riley, the Oklahoma Sooners did not miss a beat. Quarterback Baker Mayfield completed 19 out of 20 passes. Mayfield would finish the night with 329 passing yards, three touchdowns, and zero interceptions. Mayfield would finish the night with a QBR of 97.9. Oklahoma would take a running back by committee approach, and three names showed out big. Abdul Adams had seven carries and 53 rushing yards. Marcelias Sutton had nine carries, 52 rushing yards, and one rushing touchdown. Sutton would have his longest run of the night go for 21 yards.
Finally, Trey Sermon would finish his night with seven rushing attempts for 51 rushing yards. Sermon’s longest run would go for 10 yards. Leading the way for the University of Oklahoma in receptions would be Mark Andrews. Andrews would have seven receptions and 134 receiving yards, with a touchdown reception to complete his night. Honorable mention in receptions goes to Jeff Badet, who had four receptions. Not far behind Badet, Lee Morris had one reception for 43 yards and a touchdown. The Sooner Defense was led by O. Okoronkwo, E. Beal, and T. Lott who each had 4 tackles. Okoronkwo would lead the defense with one sack.
While two top Big 12 conference squared off to make the state of Oklahoma’s presence known, Bill Snyder’s Kansas State Wildcats dominated a Central Arkansas team to announce the Wildcats’ presence in the Big 12.
Central Arkansas At Kansas State: K-State wins 55-19
One of the most well-known names on the Kansas State roster was Jesse Ertz. With a 333 passing yard performance, Ertz made sure fans didn’t forget his name. Finishing the night with four passing touchdowns, Ertz was certainly the anchor of the offense. Not to be outdone, Isaiah Zuber, Isaiah Harris, Dalton Schoen were his favorite targets. Harris added three touchdown catches for 118 yards, and a touchdown. Alex Barnes and Dalvin Warmack had touchdown runs while D.J. Reed returned a punt for 62 yards for another score. The Kansas State defense was the far weaker part of the team. The defense allowed 198 yards passing and 223 yards rushing in this win.
Up next in the Big 12: University of Kansas.
University of Kansas vs. Southeast Missouri State: Kansas defeats SEMO 38-16
Kansas had a very interesting start to the season before even playing one down of football. Starting quarterback Peyton Bender was told last-minute, the morning of the game in fact, that he would be the starter. However, Bender left the coach with little regret for naming him the starter during the game. Bender completed 23 of 37 passing attempts, threw for 364 yards and four touchdowns. The junior college transfer got things rolling early, connecting with wide receiver Steve Sims Jr. for a 77-yard touchdown pass on just the third play for the Jayhawks offense.
Proving that Bender can help lead the Jayhawks to score early and often, Bender found receiver Chase Harrell for an eight-yard touchdown, after completing a fourth down play with Harrell just moments before. Kansas would go into the half with a 21 to 7 lead, then come roaring back in the second half and score 14 more. By the end of the third quarter, the score was 35-10. SEMO would go on to score just 6 more while Kansas only scored 3 to end the game 38-16.
Iowa State vs. University of Northern Iowa: Iowa State wins 42-24
Iowa State came out like it had something to prove to everyone watching. Quarterback Jacob Park threw for 271 yards and two touchdowns. David Montgomery ran for 82 yards as well. But, for Iowa State, the real offense was the defense. Along with quarterback Jacob Park being able to find his favorite receivers, the defense capitalized on a pair of turnovers to help lead Iowa State over Northern Iowa 42-24.
Liberty vs. Baylor University: Liberty defeats Baylor 48-45
Matt Rhule arrived from Temple last December in the wake of a sexual assault scandal at Baylor. As a result, then-head coach Art Briles was fired. Jim Grobe coached the Bears on an interim basis last season. Now with Liberty, Grobe was brought in by the former Baylor athletic director who also works for Liberty. Liberty quarterback Stephen Calvert passed for 447 yards, including a 26-yard backbreaking touchdown to Spencer Jones. Liberty would have a whopping 585 total yards against Baylor in their close win.
Eastern Washington At Texas Tech University: Texas wins 56-10
Texas Tech flexed its offense of muscle all game long. Tech quarterback Nick Shimonek passed for 384 yards and three touchdowns while completing 23 of his first 24 throws. The senior would finish completing 26 out of 30 attempts and zero interceptions. Tech’s Willie Sykes had a 33-yard interception return which would put the game at a 49-10 score before Tech put it away for good. Texas Tech also had a decent defensive performance allowing only 10 points.
Going further into Texas, the Texas Christian University Horned Frogs beat Jackson State like they stole something. For the last few years, Kenny Hill has become a name that fans have rallied around. This game gave fans another reason to love him.
TCU vs. Jackson State: TCU wins 63-0
Coach Gary Patterson had the chance to lead his team to his 250th career coaching victory, and come out victorious they did. However, even with the win, Patterson managed to keep a level head pointing out that there was an even bigger test ahead against Arkansas. In his 250th victory as head coach, Patterson’s team came to play.
Kenny Hill went 18-23, compiled 206 passing yards, tossed four touchdowns and had an interception. TCU’s running backs ran for a whopping 242 yards and had a rushing touchdown. Darius Anderson led in rushing yards with 67 of those 242 total rushing yards. TreVontae Hights had one reception going for 56 yards no a touchdown. However, the big players were the running back corps. The defense held Jackson State under 100 yards rushing.
Finally, one more high-powered team in the Big 12 looks to make a name for itself with a new coach at the helm. Can the Texas Longhorns manage to hold off the Maryland Terrapins?
Maryland at University of Texas: Terrapins upset Longhorns 51-41 in Tom Herman’s coaching debut
In what could have, maybe should have been an easy win, Maryland upsets and humbles the Texas Longhorns in Austin. The Longhorns came into the season with a ton of hype. After signing many of the state and nation’s top prospects, the Longhorns were in shape to make a great first impression. Or were they? With Tom Herman in control, quarterback Shane Beuchele went 34 out of 52 attempts. Beuchele had 375 passing yards, two touchdown passes, and an interception. In terms of running the ball, running back Chris Warren, III led the way. Warren finished with 31 yards on 6 attempts. The Texas running attack as a whole had 98 total rushing yards and one touchdown. The Longhorn receivers had 375 receiving yards collectively, while Collin Johnson had 175 of those yards and seven receptions.
Also of note, Reggie Hemphill-Mapps had one punt return for 91 yards and a touchdown. The Longhorn defense, along with some very questionable play calling at times left the Texas team looking weak overall. As the game drew to a close, the Longhorns defense allowed 219 passing yards and 263 rushing. Sure, it was only the first game. However, a first impression is everything. If the performance in this game is any indication, the Longhorns may need to stay away from any sort of hype generated.