The Big 12 released its 2014 schedule Tuesday. Five quick thoughts on the schedule:
Oklahoma State and Texas Tech play the first Big 12 game on a Thursday night in Stillwater on Sept. 25 in what should be a compelling matchup. This will be a critical game for both teams. The Red Raiders have a very favorable schedule next year. If they can get out of Stillwater with a victory, their next toughest road game will probably be the following weekend at Kansas State. And Tech will have an extra day to prepare.
Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy expressed concern about loading up the nonconference schedule. You can see why. The Cowboys have a brutal slate next year. Oklahoma State opens with Florida State in the Cowboys Classic at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Oklahoma State then closes out the season with back-to-back road tilts at Baylor and Oklahoma.
We’ll find out quickly whether TCU will be improved. In October, the Horned Frogs play OU, at Baylor, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech. Considering three of those games will be in Fort Worth, TCU has an opportunity for a bounce-back season.
I know the game was agreed to years ago, but why play North Dakota State in your opener if you’re Iowa State? There’s nothing to gain. And, as Kansas State found out, a whole bunch to lose against the best program in the FCS.
Texas will have a defining two-week stretch in early October. The Longhorns face Baylor in Austin on Oct. 4, then take on Oklahoma in Dallas on Oct. 11. The rest of the Longhorns’ schedule is pretty tough, too. Texas plays BYU and UCLA early in the season, then later has to go on the road to Texas Tech and Oklahoma State.