The Kansas St. Wildcats and their fans are excited about their chances in the upcoming 2012 Big 12 college football season. The school believes that the team has a genuine chance at capturing the conference title and at least one analyst agrees.
Will Harris at ESPN Insider has posted his preseason odds for the SEC and Big 12, among other conferences. Here are his preseason handicaps for who figures to win the Big 12 conference title in 2012:
Oklahoma Sooners: +115
Texas Longhorns: +400
TCU Horned Frogs: +550
West Virginia Mountaineers: +575
Kansas State Wildcats: +1100
Harris has plenty to say about the Wildcats heading into the 2012 season:
As we've said many times before, it's not smoke and mirrors if it's sustainable. Kansas State is once again dismissed by those whose predictions are driven primarily by analysis of talent or statistics. The sport's modern media emphasizes the player, but college football is still a coaches' game. Bill Snyder's teams consistently excel at things that are usually (and often correctly) dismissed as signs of good fortune.
The Wildcats relied heavily on positive markers in areas like turnover margin, yards-per-point, third-down conversion rate and nonoffensive scoring en route to a 10-win season last year. The Cats' long-term track record in these areas under Snyder suggests that winning a half-dozen games per year despite being outgained is a repeatable norm, not an outlier that's a harbinger of an impending fall. This is a senior-dominated squad in a league of vulnerable opponents. As we mentioned last year in looking ahead to 2012, Kansas State is a true favorite in the Big 12, and at 11:1 the best bet on the futures board this offseason.
Will the Cats be for real? We will have to wait and see if these predictions hold up.
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