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Big 12 appears tougher than it has ever been — if not more

The addition of West Virginia and Texas Christian might be the best thing to happen in conference realignments.
by Berry Tramel Published: September 30, 2012

Three of those schools have left the league, but they took hapless Colorado with them, and the additions of West Virginia and TCU have fortified the Big 12. And the conference has been made even tougher with the ninth conference game.

It now seems perfectly reasonable to think 7-2 will win the conference; 6-3 could do it.

“It's always been very hard to play the eight we did and the championship game,” Bob Stoops said of the previous Big 12 format. “It's been hard. But I agree now, when you add two really good football teams that are nationally ranked high and playing well, and you gotta play nine games, it's tough.”

Think of it like a golf major. The back nine holes on Sunday. You're going to make birdies and you're going to make bogeys. Just try to maximize the former and minimize the latter. There's one easy hole on the course (Kansas), there are birdie opportunities (too early to tell exactly who) and there are holes that will kick your butt.

Such a conference doesn't make for a pristine champion, but it does make for one wild ride of a season.

Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached at (405) 760-8080 or at He can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. You can also view his personality page at