Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Oklahoma State and quarterback Clint Chelf—coming off an 8-5 record last season—are picked to win the Big 12 this time around.


DALLAS , Texas — Oklahoma State was unveiled as the media’s preseason pick to win the Big 12 Conference football title, though the top four teams were tightly bunched.

Oklahoma was picked second, with TCU third and Texas fourth. A whopping six teams—more than half the league—received first-place votes.

West Virginia, with its quarterback situation unsettled for the first time in three seasons and needing to repair a defense that was horrid in 2012, was picked eighth.
2013 Big 12 football media preseason poll:
Oklahoma State (15)
Oklahoma (8)
TCU (9)
Texas (8)
Baylor (2)
Kansas State (1)
Texas Tech
West Virginia
Iowa State


While preseason pollsters wield all the accuracy of blindfolded dart-thrower after a dizzy bat race, they are a necessity because they set expectations and afford us a plausible excuse to talk football in July.

With that in mind, here are my top-to-bottom picks:

1. Texas: Loads of talent, albeit drastically underdeveloped talent. Mack Brown isn’t the senile idiot some haters make him out to be, and last year’s super-green team will grow into the league’s best.

2. TCU: Casey Pachall is stepping back into the QB’s role—or more accurately, 12-stepping back into the QB’s role—and the defense is regaining its nasty nature.

3. Oklahoma: If only the Sooners can get past pesky WVU in Week 2 …

4. Oklahoma State: Mike Gundy had a busy offseason, replacing amazing quarterbacks coach Todd Monken and reading all the thank-you emails from Butch Jones.

5. Texas Tech: The Tommy Tuberville bon-voyage party lasted about as long as a Red Raiders huddle. Enter West Texas legend-to-be Kliff Kingsbury, who brings back a zippy passing attack (but alas, no Johnny Manziel).

6. Baylor: The Holiday Bowl beatdown of UCLA fraudulently fueled offseason speculation the Bears could win the wide-open Big 12.

7. Kansas State: Losing Optimus Klein isn’t as bad as this year’s Minimus Defense—whereby the front seven must be rebuilt.

8. West Virginia: Even a Pinstripe Bowl bid might be reason to celebrate this season.

9. Kansas: The Weis Guys open the year aiming to end a 21-game Big 12 nightmare. When the losing streak ends—and it will at some point this season—let’s see the Jayhawks try to carry their coach off the field.

10. Iowa State: Can the best-coached team in the league finish last? It can this year.

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  • Helen5844

    According to the predictions in the SEC these media people are 4-12. Quite a record. I do not care what they think I believe we will do just fine if we play our best each and every week. No one thought we had a chance against Clemson either. Our guys need to play with a chip on their shoulders every week. No one even says how good Joseph is. He will show them all this coming year.
    I am very proud to have seen Will Clarks name listed on the Good Works nomination.
    Also congrats to Jordan Thompson who is on the Belinickoff Award Watch List. LETS GOOOO MOUNTAINEERS

    • big tom

      what,,, jordan caught 8 passes last yr. and is on the Belin. list,,, that's the biggest joke of the yr.

      • Allan Taylor

        These preseason watch lists aim to market themselves on every website/newspaper from coast-to-coast by including almost anyone who can buckle a chinstrap at the appropriate position. (That said, Squirt might still be polishing up his Spring Game Biletnikoff ...)

      • JS

        No, Tom. That "biggest joke of the yr." award goes to YOU. Please visit your own fan blogs at Marshall or Pitt and spew your negativity.

  • wvrefugee

    What's most interesting to me is that I predicted that if we went .500 in the conference last year I said it would be a great season with the conference change and all. I was labeled a negative Nellie. Look what happened??????
    I predict at least 1 game under .500 in the league this season and the non-conference record is a toss up.
    Who will get a raise or get fired after this season??????????

  • Moon

    Ha! Dana Holgs offensive production remains the same the year after he loses a quarterback. So if the offense is good and the defense is just bad.....then we should be 9-3. Nobody in our league is all that. We will beat OK in Norman 41-27.......again....LOL

    • big tom

      why would anyone think that we can replace of offense what we lost and still be as productive as last yr.... be realistic,, it ain't gonna happen,, quit dreamin...tavon austin comes along once in a generation,,,, stedman had great hands and ran routes well,, and Geno just may be the best qb ever at wvu.... so where do we find a qb and two recievers with these skills,,, they certainly aren't on this falls roster...get real man.

      • Shawn

        Dana Holgorsen's system made Geno the best QB at WVU. It also made Bailey and Austin the best to come out of WVU in a long time. Its not different than Rich Rod's system making Pat White one of the best to ever play at WVU.

      • Tom

        IMHO, Geno is not the best QB to play at WVU. Pat White and Major Harris were better. Geno had some outstanding games, but at other times (e.g. Texas Tech, Pinstripe Bowl) fell flat on his face. In his defense, the OL was not very impressive either. If they are not improved this year, your bleak prediction may come true.

      • Charleston,WV

        You obviously haven't done your homework regarding the offensive production of Dana's offensive schemes through the years. The linchpin of last years team was our horrid defense. If there is a slight improvement of our defense and special teams we should have a much better record. To boot you must say that all the returning defensive players have a chip on their shoulders. Don't lose the faith brother.

        "If you accept the expectations of others, especially negative ones, then you never will change the outcome."(a quote from Michael Jordan). Let's Gooooooooooooo

  • big tom

    those who say 9-4, 8-5 etc. simply are stupid.
    we have new coaches, we have new players filling in new positions, we don't have a kicking game , we don't have a def. , our off line will be extremely young,,, and we aren't playing a bunch of patsies like the big east.
    this past recruiting yr wasn't bad, wasn't great, but not bad,,, we need to step it up, for three yrs, and when deforest leaves , have a legit coach to replace him.
    really a 5-7 yr is about on..... 6-6,,, be a far reach,,, i hope so, i hope we get a bowl, but i wouldn't bet the farm on it..

  • Rugger

    Here's a chip for that shoulder.

  • FungoJoe

    4-8 and thats there fate.
    9th in the Big 12, won't be swell.
    No stars to speak of, there's just no love
    For WVU, its deja vue.

    • Allan Taylor

      How about a haiku, Fungo?

      • FungoJoe

        For the Mountaineers
        There'll be no winning season
        And no bowl game flop.

        • Allan Taylor

          Most honorable attempt, Fungo.

          • FungoJoe

            Empty seats abound
            As Mounties take a beat down
            No couches will burn.

  • Maxxajay

    9 and 3 overall 6 and 3 in the Big 12 ....I have said that all spring and summer....First started with WVU in 1950....As we say once a Mountaineer always a Mountaineer.

  • Phil M.

    2013 WVU will be 8-4 !!

    No pressure, nobody expects them to be any good and that's when you sneak up on a few teams.

    WVU vs UNC in the Russell Athletic Bowl.

    • big tom

      name the eight teams we will beat

      • Shawn

        William & Mary
        Texas Tech
        Iowa State
        Kansas St.
        Georgia St.

        • Pete

          I will take it right now! You may not be far off.

  • Mike

    Thanks for the positive comments. Finally a man that thinks outside the box and sees things the way I do. I think they will do just fine and playing the underdog is where we want to play. Last years team had so much hype that the crumbled under pressure. This year they have no ESPN coverage telling them they are great. They have to earn it and that sometimes is the element of surprise. No team knows what to expect from us. I say 8-4.

  • Medman

    In my opinion after being a season ticket holder for decades, donating thousands to the program and attending all of our bowl games since 1970 , I am not feeling good about the prospects for this season. Negativity is not my normal attitude, but as one gets older reality begins to override emotion on these things. I'm guessing it will be a 6-6 season, at best. We all have guesses and opinions, right?

    • wvrefugee

      Medman, AND you get to PAY more to watch it go down the toilet!!!

  • Jeremy Bauserman

    I see a 6-6 overall regular season record and that just might be enough for a bowl game.

  • Big Larry


    I am man enough to admit when I am wrong and I was wrong. I predicted WVU to be picked 9th or 10th and they were picked to finish 8th. Forgive me. Sometimes I am wrong...

    Last year WVU had arguably the most prolific offense in their history and they finished 4-5 in the Big 12. That offense is gone and must be completely revamped. The offense must start over from scratch.

    Contrary to the belief of some fans, the WVU roster isn’t perfect. Like any college football team, they have multiple areas of concern throughout their roster heading into the 2013 season. So far the main areas of concern on offense have been quarterback and offensive line. And then there is that nagging issue of the inconsistent kicking game and special teams.

    The WVU defense last season was the football equivalent of not being able to walk and chew gum at the same time. It was incongruous against Big 12 competition and most all of the opposing offenses scored at will. To say they were “pitiful” would be an understatement. They will still be hard pressed to hold teams to under 40 points a game.

    So it is what it is and wishing the team success on my part will not make them a better team. Look for the Mountaineers to finish 5-7...

    Anyway, that’s just my opinion and I think everyone is entitled to hear it.

    And yes, “incongruous” is a word...


    • Nope

      Big Larry. We're not entitled to hear what you think.

    • big tom

      i think you hit the nail on the head with this prediction... i go back to the gene corum era and i am hard pressed to find a defense wors than last yrs'.
      i see little over improvement for the total team effort this yr,.
      6-6 would be the very best we can hope to be... if we lose to maryland, it could be a very terrible yr. and many will be after holgie's job.
      i think we needs a couple more yrs to raise the level of our recruits , but def. has no where to go but up, and if it doesn't, more heads must fall,,,, for sure, deforest should be spending his last yr as his contract is up
      poor wvu,, bad in fb and bb at the same time.and these two coaches are getting paid huge salaries,,,it's almost a sin what they make with huggie makeing close to 10,0000 per day,,, simply unheard of .

    • Wemakerain

      So you admit both your age and that you never attended the school? I think there is this kind of perceived slight by people when they identify with the team. For instance employees of Walmart or McDonalds say "they are a good place to get food" where as a small business would say "we make the best stuff". Since you didn't go to school at WVU you don't feel like it's family, so you can observe potentially more objectively, and definitely a more pessimistic viewpoint. I totally get it, I just always try to see the positives

    • Ryan

      I think WVU had the most prolific offensive PLAYERS in its history last year, but you need more than a good QB and receivers to have a prolific offense. The O line was a major liability at times, and in the majority of games, the running game was mediocre. I'd re-watch games we lost on DVR last year and there were times when open plays were blown up by 4 man rush. A handful of stars can make a good team great (see WVU circa 2007), but can't make a bad team good (see WVU circa 1999).

      I think the TEAM this year, as whole, could be better than the TEAM last year. Geno, Tavon, and Stedman were once in a generation players, but this offense doesn't need superstars to move the ball (and in fact can make no names into superstars based on stats alone).

      My guess is a better D, a better pass rush, a much better running game, and better special teams combined with a functioning passing game will take us to an 8-4 record this year (with a bowl win getting us to 9).

      • Wemakerain

        I like Geno, but once in a generation for him is probably a little hyperbole, but for the other two I agree. I think the offensive numbers will be very similar to last year's but there won't be 2 dominant players, but rather 4 or 5 key contributors.

    • Shawn

      8 starting Freshmen on Defense with a new scheme, new league and more travel, Big East recruits, ect.

      All of these are a recipe for disaster. Our Defense will be a load better, our kicking game will be obviously better and even though we will miss the big time play making ability of Bailey and Austin, we will be more balanced on offense. Our running game will be the key in deciding the fate of Mountaineer football.

      Also I think the Defense has the right man on the job now. Patterson has that tough smack you in the mouth mentality that WVU is used to. They'll be ready come August 31.

  • Shawn

    8-4 this year. I think we knock off OU in week two but drop a few close ones down the road. You'll see a much improved D that will keep the offense afloat until the gears start turning.

    • Wemakerain

      Yep I can see dropping another one and being 7-5, not as outraged as Texas fans are with this list. I bet they come into the season ranked top 15 and picked to finish 4th in your own league is pretty rough

  • Mac

    I hope I'm wrong, but I see a losing season. 8 or 9 is about where we'll be in league. Kansas should still be a gimme win this year, but every other game will be hard fought.

  • red dwarf

    "Even a Pinstripe Bowl bid might be reason to celebrate this season." I dunno. I think I'd rather play the victim of a snub and stay home then go through another beat-down like that again

    • hailey

      I say we dont not play anyone who has ever beaten us in the past so red dwarf will be happy, or we could simply play better and win.

      Winners are not afraid to rise up and meet challenges, while losers want to run from the competition which has beaten them in the past.