Big 12 has a rematch of last year’s title game and the league’s top QB is facing his old team

Kansas State's Ty Zentner kicks a field goal past TCU linebacker Shadrach Banks (19) in overtime of the Big 12 Conference championship NCAA college football game, Saturday, Dec. 3, 2022, in Arlington, Texas. Holding is Jack Blumer. (AP Photo/LM Otero) (Lm Otero, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Things to watch in the Big 12 Conference in Week 8:


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TCU (4-3, 2-2 Big 12) at Kansas State (4-2, 2-1) meet in a rematch of last year's Big 12 championship game that the Wildcats won in overtime. It ended TCU's undefeated season, though the Horned Frogs still made the four-team College Football Playoff and national title game. Both teams go into Saturday's meeting after bounce-back wins with unexpected quarterback situations.

Will Howard, K-State's Big 12 title-winning QB, has struggled at times this season (nine TDs, seven interceptions). Dual-threat freshman Avery Johnson matched a school record with five TD runs and the Wildcats overcome a third-quarter deficit to win 38-21 at Texas Tech last week after losing two of their previous three games. Coach Chris Klieman plans to use both quarterbacks.

The Frogs lost back-to-back games before redshirt freshman Josh Hoover completed 37 of 58 passes for 439 yards and four touchdowns in his first career start, a 44-11 win over BYU. Chandler Morris suffered an MCL strain in his left knee the previous week.


Oklahoma senior quarterback Dillon Gabriel vs. UCF, his former team. The second-year starter for the sixth-ranked Sooners (6-0, 3-0), third nationally with 347.7 total yards per game, is the first FBS QB since 1988 to complete at least 72% of his passes with 16 touchdowns and two interceptions or less while also rushing for at least 200 yards and five TDs in his team's first six games. Gabriel threw for 8,037 yards and 70 TDs in 26 games for the Knights from 2019-21, though the left-hander's final UCF season ended after three games because of a broken collarbone. He has 5,046 yards and 41 TDs passing in 18 games for the Sooners.


Oklahoma State sophomore running back Ollie Gordon II has three consecutive 100-yard rushing games and will try to extend that streak Saturday at West Virginia, a year after running 17 times for 136 yards against the Mountaineers. In a win over Kansas last week, Gordon had 168 yards rushing and 116 receiving. It was the first 100-100 game by an Oklahoma State player since 1989.


Big 12 newcomer Houston gets a one-and-done league game against No. 8 Texas (5-1, 2-1). The former Southwest Conference rivals are meeting for the first time since 2002, but Saturday's game in Houston will be their only meeting as Big 12 foes before the Longhorns go to the SEC next year. There are no future games scheduled between the Texas schools that have met only 25 times. The Longhorns hold a 16-7-2 series lead.


Cincinnati (2-4, 0-3) plays a first-time opponent for the second week in a row when hosting Baylor (2-4, 1-2), a week after the Bearcats lost at home to Iowa State. ... The four Big 12 newcomers are a combined 2-10 in conference games, with Houston's final-play 41-39 win over West Virginia last week the only victory that didn't come against a fellow newcomer. ... The two active FBS punters with the best career averages will be in the same game: BYU's Ryan Rehkow (47.1 yards per punt) is at home against Texas Tech and Austin McNamara (46.1).


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