ESPN recently announced their schedule for their traditional “Big Monday” games. As all college basketball fans know: Big Monday’s typically mean a Big East game, followed by a Big 12 game later. The Big 12 games appear to be great battles. Here is the schedule for 2012-2013:
January 14th – Baylor Bears at Kansas Jayhawks
This first game could very well be a battle of conference favorites. Both teams will have young guys filling in for the loss of several key stars. The Jayhawks lost Thomas Robinson and Tyshawn Taylor, while the Bears saw Perry Jones, Quincy Miller and Quincy Acy leave. Look for Baylor freshman Isaiah Austin to be a great early test for Jeff Withey of Kansas.
January 21st – Oklahoma State Cowboys at Baylor Bears
Oklahoma State is looking for a rebound season, after winning just 15 games a season ago. The Cowboys were one of the worst rebounding teams a season ago, and have worked the summer, and will place a major emphasis on that this fall. Oklahoma
State will take on a Baylor team that is among the favorites in a hostile environment in Waco.
January 21st –Texas Longhorns at Oklahoma Sooners
No matter what the standings look like – this is a big rivalry game. Rick Barnes and the
Longhorns felt a little disappointed after losing 14 games last season. Oklahoma is a program in the conference that is heading in the right direction. Lon Kruger will get the Sooners into the tournament soon – will this be the season?
January 28th –Kansas Jayhawks at West Virginia Mountaineers
Let’s see how the conference favorite does going out East. West Virginia Coliseum is one of the toughest places in the country to play. Look for the Mountaineers to improve upon their relatively disappointing attendance numbers of a season ago. This is the first of two straight games for the Mountaineers on the big time.
February 4th –Texas Longhorns atWest Virginia Mountaineers
Rick Barnes and the Longhorns will get their first taste of the Coliseum. After nearly a
month of conference play, this game could be a pivotal game for the standings in the Big 12.
February 11th – Kansas State Wildcats at Kansas Jayhawks
Rivalry game. It will not matter what the standings look like for this mid-winter game. The Wildcats now have new leadership, but the hatred between the two teams will continue. This will be a Fighting Illini favorite, as their previous two
coaches will meet up at Phog Allen Fieldhouse.
February 18th – West Virginia Mountaineers at Kansas State Wildcats
This features Big Bad Bob Huggins heading back to Manhattan, where he won 23 games. That was the most a Kansas State team won in nearly 20 years. Now the Wildcats have Bruce Weber as the guide dog. The Mountaineers will have a long travel on a Monday night, but should not be scared of the hostile environment in Manhattan,
following their time in the Big East.
February 25th –Kansas Jayhawks at Iowa State Cyclones
This will be the first time since 2006 that Big Monday came to Ames, Iowa. The Cyclones showed some revival last season under head coach Fred Hoiberg. Last season, Iowa State upset the Jayhawks, which led to some increased exposure for the program.
March 4th – Baylor Bears at Texas Longhorns
In the final Monday of the regular season, this could be a huge game in the standings. Heck – this could be for the conference title. The Longhorns have had success in the long history of this rivalry, but most recently Baylor has owned Texas; winning five of their last seven.
This appears to be a great slate of games. We are excited to see some Big 12 basketball.
Let the countdown to the games continue!