Big 12 teams have completed the nonconference portion of the 2013 schedule, going 22-8 in the process. That’s a 73.3 winning percentage. Four teams got through their nonconference schedule undefeated (Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Baylor and Texas Tech). For the last three seasons (since 2011), the Big 12 has a combined record of 75-15 (83.3 percent winning percentage) against teams from outside of the conference.
Unlike past seasons, at least through the nonconference or early part of the schedule, conference teams are winning games with more than just running up big offensive numbers. Defense and special teams are coming into play more this season than in recent years. Thirteen touchdowns have been scored by Big 12 teams already this season resulting from plays on defense or special teams.
Don’t be mistaken, though, the Big 12 is still very much an offensive-centric conference. As a collective whole, the Big 12 ranks second among the FBS conferences in games through Week 5 in both passing (276 yards per game) and total offense (averaging 455 ypg).
Most coaches believe that to win a conference championship a team must win all of its games at home and at least half of its road games. Only four Big 12 teams have lost games at home this season, and none of those have been in conference play. Out of four conference games thus far, the home team has won all four.
Kansas State and Texas have both lost one home game this year to nonconference opponents, and Iowa State has come up on the short end twice at home. Ironically, the Cyclones lone win so far in 2013 has been on the road at Tulsa.
Ranked Big 12 teams (of which there are four this week), should be especially concerned when going on the road to play an unranked opponent. Just ask Oklahoma State (a loser last weekend at unranked West Virginia) and TCU, which went to Lubbock, Texas, in Week 3, as the country’s 24th-ranked team and came out a loser and out of the top 25.
In 2012, a ranked Big 12 team lost on the road to an unranked opponent four out of 12 times.
Here are a dozen more fun numerical facts that reflect on the 2013 Big 12 football season:
1.000 – Iowa State is tied for first in the nation in red-zone offensive efficiency. The Cyclones have made nine trips inside the red zone (within 20 yards of the defensive team’s goal line) this season. All nine offensive possessions have ended with points (4 passing TDs, 3 rushing and 2 field goals).
6 – The minutes remaining in the game when Notre Dame held Oklahoma to its first three-and-out possession in the game.
7 – Baylor has the longest active winning streak among Big 12 teams. The Bears, 3-0 this season, have won seven consecutive games dating back to last season. Oklahoma and Texas Tech are next, at four, all this season.
9 – In Oklahoma’s 35-21 win over Notre Dame on Saturday, the Sooners passed for nine first downs, while Notre Damecompleted only nine passes the entire game.
11.0 – Average yards per rushing attempt this season by Baylor junior running back Lache Seastrunk, who leads the Big 12 in rushing.
16 – Sixteen quarterbacks have started a game for Big 12 teams so far this season. Five schools gave started more than one quarterback, led by West Virginia, which has started three signal callers in its first five games. Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas, TCU are the other four teams who have gone with multiple starting quarterbacks.
22 – Number of years since Baylor started the season 4-0 in football, which is what the Bears’ record will be if they are able to hold serve at home Saturday against giant-killer West Virginia. The last time Baylor started the season 4-0 was 1991. The Bears went 5-0 to start the season that year.
31 – TCU scored 31 fourth-quarter points Saturday to break open its game against SMU and win going away, 48-17. That is the most points scored in the fourth quarter this season by an FBS team.
128 – Big 12 teams have held their opponents to 128 drives in the first five weeks of the season that have ended in three or less plays in a possession because of a forced punt or a turnover.
139 – Average rushing yards per game after three games by Baylor’s Lache Seastrunk, ninth best in the nation.
200 – Junior Aaron Wimberly became only the third player in the five seasons Paul Rhoads has been head coach at Iowa State to have 200 all-purpose yards in a single game. Wimberly rushed for 137 yards, caught a pass for 31 yards and had a 32-yard kickoff return.
1928 – The last and only time before last Saturday that Oklahoma State had played a game in Morgantown, W.V. The Cowboys lost both times.