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TMP settles for split -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

Shields strikes out 12 as Royals complete sweep -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

Indian swimmers seventh in Salina -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

HHS softball splits with Salina South -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

HHS baseball swept at Salina South -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

Final home games for Tigers -4/18/2014, 10:14 AM

Tiger softball No. 8 in first region rankings -4/18/2014, 10:13 AM

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Hayes is KSU's next big 'Cat -4/17/2014, 10:44 AM

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Otis track team deals with injuries, illness -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Jets land former Titan Chris Johnson -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

HDN Area Track & Field honor roll, April 17 -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Freeman winds up with N.Y. Giants -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Tigers win on grand slam -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Weber gets extension at K-State -4/17/2014, 10:15 AM

HHS' Weigel becomes a Cowboy -4/17/2014, 10:15 AM

Humburg jumping well for Ness City -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Doubles team rolls at HHS Invitational -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

HHS soccer improves to 6-2, beats Great Bend -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Prep golf results, April 15 -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Tiger tennis ends MIAA season in loss -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Tiger golfers ninth in St. Charles, Mo. -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Track results, Redmen Relays, April 15 -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP boys win at Ellsworth -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP softball sweeps Ellis -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP soccer suffers loss at Garden City -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP boys' golf third at Goodland -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP baseball rolls past Ellis -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

HHS baseball splits with Junction City -4/15/2014, 9:53 AM

TMP softball swept at Colby -4/15/2014, 10:10 AM

TMP golf begins season today -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

HHS soccer rallies for victory -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

Rare time off for Tiger softball -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

KSU, WSU Barnstormers coming to Hays -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

Watson wins Masters -4/14/2014, 10:08 AM

Royals swept by Twins -4/14/2014, 10:07 AM

Harvick wins at Darlington -4/13/2014, 6:51 AM

Royals ace James Shields struggles in loss to Twins -4/13/2014, 6:42 AM

K-State's Deante Burton feels ready to take his game up a notch -4/13/2014, 6:39 AM

Former Jayhawks address football team about facing struggles -4/13/2014, 6:39 AM

HHS basketball camp May 27 to 29 -4/13/2014, 6:32 AM

Tigers’ Wolf second at K.T. Woodman -4/13/2014, 6:32 AM

FHSU tennis drops pair of MIAA outings -4/13/2014, 6:31 AM

FHSU softball 3-1 in weekend -4/13/2014, 6:31 AM

Tiger offense shines in Spring Game -4/13/2014, 6:31 AM

Tiger baseball 1-3 in series -4/13/2014, 6:30 AM

Mattheyer jumps onto scene at Ellis -4/13/2014, 6:30 AM

HHS golf finishes second in Garden City -4/13/2014, 6:32 AM

HHS pitcher, catcher share chemistry -4/13/2014, 7:56 AM

HHS relay team wins Elite -4/12/2014, 6:37 PM

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Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

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SPOTLIGHT
Big 12 set for wide-open race with early surprises

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Big 12 set for wide-open race with early surprises

Published on -10/15/2013, 10:05 AM

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By STEPHEN HAWKINS

Associated Press

There are some early surprises in the Big 12 Conference, which is still setting up as the expected wide-open race.

The league's only undefeated teams are 12th-ranked Baylor (5-0, 2-0 Big 12) and No. 16 Texas Tech (6-0, 3-0 Big 12) with new coach and former quarterback Kliff Kingsbury.

And Texas, after going 1-2 in nonconference games with big losses to BYU and Mississippi, is 3-0 in the Big 12 after a season-shifting victory over Oklahoma last weekend in the Red River Rivalry that the Sooners had dominated recently.

"We're so fortunate to be in a conference," Longhorns coach Mack Brown said. "Teams that are independent, after they have some problems early don't have a chance to rebound and still save their season and have something to play for."

With eight weeks left in the regular season, the top five teams in the league standings still have to play each other, except for that 36-20 win by Texas (4-2) over the 18th-ranked Sooners (5-1, 2-1).

"Our league is exciting this year because there is not 'A' team that everybody can pick," Brown said. "It's already changed two or three times."

Meanwhile, defending Big 12 champion Kansas State is 0-3 in conference play going into an open date.

"It's a strong belief of ours that anybody can defeat anyone else on any given day," KSU coach Bill Snyder said. "I think that's proving out right now."

When Big 12 coaches submitted their preseason ballots back in July, six different teams got first-place votes. Texas Tech wasn't one of them, and was picked to finish seventh.

"I think it's the same way if we had looked at it in August, you look at it and say it's a wide-open race," Baylor coach Art Briles said during the weekly teleconference with Big 12 coaches. "Nothing has changed as we're into October. I don't think it's a surprise to anybody."

Except maybe the early order of the teams.

Baylor, which averaged more than 70 points is first four games, survived its first road test. They Bears won 35-25 Saturday at Kansas State, which was intent of avenging the lopsided loss from last season when the Wildcats got to Waco as the No. 1 team in the BCS standings.

No. 21 Oklahoma State (4-1, 1-1) was the preseason favorite by the coaches to win the league, just ahead of the Sooners. The Cowboys had an early loss at West Virginia (3-3, 1-2), which has alternated wins and losses all season.

"There's a lot of parity in this league. I've said this for a number of years now," Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said. "It's increasing each season."

Consider that in the past seven years, only Texas in 2009 went undefeated in Big 12 play, and that was on the way to playing in the BCS national championship game. Kansas State and Oklahoma State shared the league title with one Big 12 loss last year, when six other teams were either 5-4 or 4-5 in league play.

The Cowboys, coming off an open date, host TCU (3-3, 1-2) on Saturday. Texas doesn't play this week before going on the road to play the Horned Frogs.

TCU coach Gary Patterson would prefer the Big 12 play its conference games in consecutive weeks without open dates.

"I think it's an unfair advantage when people have off weeks," Patterson said. "The thing I'd change about what we do in the league, once we get into it, we play, we don't have any off weeks. ... So it's all even."

Patterson, who will get an extra week to prepare for Baylor in late November, knows television helps dictate the schedule. And there could be some high drama with late-season games having potential Big 12 championship implications.

While there are a lot of games left before then, Texas Tech plays at Texas on Thanksgiving night. The regular season ends the first Saturday in December with the Longhorns at Baylor, and OU going to Oklahoma State.

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