Several college football teams across the state and the Big 12 Conference are in the thick of conference title races entering this weekend. Here is the schedule of games featuring Big 12 and Texas schools in Week 9.
No.6 Oklahoma (7-0, 4-0 in the Big 12) at Kansas (5-2, 2-2 in the Big 12), 11 a.m. CT, FOX
Oklahoma has rolled through this season after winning only six games a year ago. Having already surpassed that total, the Sooners lead the Big 12 and are squarely in the College Football Playoff picture. Kansas started the season 5-0 before a loss to then-No.14 Texas and has done well staying afloat without star quarterback Jalon Daniels. However, it will be difficult for Kansas to win this game without him, even though Oklahoma struggled last week against Central Florida.
South Carolina (2-5, 1-4 in the SEC) at Texas A&M (4-3, 2-2 in the SEC), 11 a.m. CT, ESPN
Texas A&M gets a bit of a break this week (or as much of a break as the SEC offers) after playing two consecutive ranked opponents. The Aggies dropped both games and will be looking to pick up a win and get back on track before traveling to No.12 Ole Miss next week. While South Carolina is one of the worst teams in the conference this season, it will be paramount for A&M to play well and avoid a classic trap game.
Houston (3-4, 1-3 in the Big 12) at Kansas State (5-2, 3-1 in the Big 12), 11 a.m. CT, ESPN2
Houston has found its groove offensively with Donovan Smith at quarterback, but it has yet to lead to more wins. The Cougars were 10 yards away from forcing overtime and possibly pulling off a second consecutive upset against Texas last week but lost on a controversial fourth-down call. Meanwhile, Kansas State destroyed TCU last week and can set up a pivotal matchup against Texas next week with a win.
West Virginia (4-3, 2-2 in the Big 12) at Central Florida (3-4, 0-4 in the Big 12), 11 a.m. CT, FS1
West Virginia has lost two in a row and dropped to the middle of the pack, while Central Florida is still looking for its first-ever Big 12 win. The Knights play like a different team with John Rhys Plumlee at quarterback and could use the momentum created last week against No.6 Oklahoma to fuel their efforts at home.
Tulsa (3-4, 1-2 in the American Athletic Conference) at SMU (5-2, 3-0 in the American Athletic Conference), 11 a.m. CT, ESPNU
Tulsa is stuck in the middle of the AAC, while SMU finds itself in a three-way tie with No.22 Tulane and Texas-San Antonio for first place. The Mustangs are coming off their most complete game of the season against Temple and will look to continue that trend as they contend for the conference title.
Memphis (5-2, 2-1 in the American Athletic Conference) at North Texas (3-4,1-2 in the American Athletic Conference), 2 p.m. CT, ESPN+
Memphis sits right behind the three-way tie in the AAC, with its only loss coming to Tulane. The Tigers are clearly one of the best teams in the conference and will provide a good measuring stick for North Texas this weekend. The Mean Green has played well in recent weeks, but a slow first half helped lead to a loss at Tulane last week.
BYU (5-2, 2-2 in the Big 12) at No.7 Texas (6-1, 3-1 in the Big 12), 2:30 p.m. CT, ABC
BYU responded to a 44-11 thumping against TCU with a 13-point win over Texas Tech, while Texas hung on against Houston after a fast start. Outside of the TCU game, BYU has displayed an offense that can keep up, but its defense has given up at least 27 points to Power 5 teams in every game this season. However, Texas is turning to backup quarterbacks Maalik Murphy and Arch Manning after the injury to Quinn Ewers, so no one really knows what to expect from the Longhorns’ offense.
Iowa State (4-3, 3-1 in the Big 12) at Baylor (3-4, 2-2 in the Big 12), 2:30 p.m. CT, Big 12 Network/ESPN+
After an ugly start that included many people labeling head coach Matt Campbell “washed up,” Iowa State has suddenly won three of its four Big 12 matchups, with the only loss coming at Oklahoma. The Cyclones still have plenty of tests on their schedule and cannot afford to overlook Baylor. The Bears’ season has not been what fans had hoped for, and a win this weekend would go a long way toward building some confidence for the future.
East Carolina (1-6, 0-3 in the American Athletic Conference) at Texas-San Antonio (4-3, 3-0 in the American Athletic Conference), 2:30 p.m. CT, ESPN+
It’s been a tough year for East Carolina, and it only gets more challenging as it faces a UTSA team fighting for first place. UTSA is a different team with a healthy Frank Harris at quarterback. The team is 4-1 with him in the lineup this season and is picking up steam as the season continues.
No.22 Tulane (6-1, 3-0 in the American Athletic Conference) at Rice (4-3, 2-1 in the American Athletic Conference), 3 p.m. CT, ESPN2
Tulane will visit a Rice team that is actually having a pretty nice season. The Owls are tied with Memphis in the conference standings but begin a three-game stretch against the top three teams this week. Tulane has been extremely balanced and is difficult to compete with, but a Rice win could shake up the conference — at least temporarily.
Troy (5-2, 2-1 in the Sun Belt) at Texas State (5-2, 2-1 in the Sun Belt), 6 p.m. CT, ESPN+
This is a battle for first place in the Sun Belt West. First-year head coach G.J. Kinne has Texas State off to its best start in its brief program history. The Bobcats are already two wins shy of tying the program’s single-season record and would be in the driver’s seat in the division with a win.
Cincinnati (2-5, 0-4 in the Big 12) at Oklahoma State (5-2, 3-1 in the Big 12), 7 p.m. CT, ESPN2
Cincinnati is another team struggling in its first season in the Big 12. The Bearcats have not looked competitive in many games this season and face a suddenly hot Oklahoma State team that has settled on a quarterback and rattled off three straight wins.