LAST WEEK'S WINNERS: Nigel Dunham and Cory Emley each went 6-0 and predicted the same KU-KSU tallies as Tom Keegan - 31-24 - which was one point off of the actual final score.
The most underrated coach in the history of college football has another team exceeding expectations and positioned for a longshot national championship run.
Dennis Erickson, who won two national championships at Miami and had the best winning percentage in the history of that program, heads Arizona State, one of 11 undefeated schools.
Erickson's head coaching record reads more like that of an assistant coach because he's hopped around so much, which could be a factor in him not getting the recognition he deserves as a heavyweight.
He spent four seasons at Idaho, one at Wyoming, two at Washington State, six at Miami, four with the Seattle Seahawks, four with Oregon State, two with the San Francisco 49ers, one back at Idaho, and now is in his first season with Arizona State.
Erickson's first Washington State team was 3-7-1, his second 9-3. His first Oregon State team went 7-5, his second 11-1 and finished ranked fourth in the country. Arizona State is his third Pac-10 school, a record. He's been blasted for recruiting thugs along the way, but realize this: It's not always easy getting thugs to do what you want them to do in a structured environment and Erickson's been able to do that.
The Sun Devils have a brutal schedule the rest of the way, starting with Washington on Saturday, then a bye week, then Cal, at Oregon, at UCLA, before finishing up with home games against USC and Arizona. Long touted as an offensive genius, Erickson's team is outscoring opponents by an average score of 37-14.
This week's predictions for Big 12 games:
Kansas 45, Baylor 10: One victory at Kansas State wasn't enough to rob the Jayhawks of their hunger. They made enough mistakes in it for coach Mark Mangino to keep them humble.
Kansas State 21, Colorado 20: It's going to be difficult for the Wildcats to figure out how to win without center Jordan Bedore.
Oklahoma 44, Missouri 38: A prelude to the Big 12 title game? This has the potential to be the most exciting game of the season, based on the two explosive offenses.
Nebraska 34, Oklahoma State 27: To see the car dealer's impersonation of Cowboys coach Mike Gundy, visit YouTube and type "Westpointe a la Mike Gundy." Visit nationallampoon.com for another Gundy spinoff commercial.
Texas Tech 34, Texas A&M 31: College Station has the reputation of being a more fun-filled place to attend college than Lubbock, but Tech's offense is more entertaining.
Texas 42, Iowa State 13: Mack Brown coaches against his former co-defensive coordinator Gene Chizik, who heads the toughest Big 12 school to which to recruit football players.
(The contest is currently closed. Good luck to all who entered.)