The most anticipated football game in the new-look Big 12 is not Oklahoma-Texas.
Never thought I'd see the day.
That's what I wrote in 2008, when I first ranked every Big 12 game, a ploy to help us all get through the summer. Don't know it helps anybody else, but helps me pass the time until September.
Anyway, I ranked OU-Texas No. 1 going into 2008 and wrote “always the league's marquee game.”
Not always. In summer 2011, the most-anticipated Big 12 football game is Bedlam. OSU-OU in Stillwater on Dec. 3.
Maybe it would be different if the Sooners had to play at Texas A&M, which ranks with the Cowboys as the chief threats to OU's title quest. Maybe it would be different if Mack Brown had a quarterback. Maybe it would be different if Nebraska hadn't bolted to the Big Ten.
But they don't, he doesn't and it did.
Heck, we saw the first cracks in the OU-Texas dominance just last summer.
Last June, I wrote of OU-Texas, “Maybe some year, this won't be the league's most-anticipated game. But not this year.”
I was wrong. Within a week, the Big 12 was disintegrating, and while all the king's horses and all the king's men put the league back together, it did so without the Cornhuskers.
By mid-June, the Nebraska-Texas game had become a Husker holy war and clearly the Big 12's marquee game.
Bedlam is no holy war. No more so than usual, anyway. It's just a magnificent matchup to contemplate, almost six months out.
In-state rivals, with a recent history of majestic games in Stillwater, both sporting top-shelf quarterbacks and All-American receivers.
Bedlam StoryWall 2010