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Big 12 Power Rankings: Baylor Leads the Pack (for Now)

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West Virginia and Baylor are the conference’s only undefeated teams

Baylor v Iowa State Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images

Happy Monday, Sooner fans! With Big 12 play well underway, we’ll now start doing weekly power rankings. The conference still has two undefeated teams, but how much respect will they get?

  1. Baylor - The Bears, almost by default, lead the pack at this point in the Big 12. Their schedule hasn’t been stellar out side of the Oklahoma State game in Waco, but to their credit, they were able to come out on top against a quality opponent. The schedule won’t get tough for a while, as their next quality opponent won’t come until they face TCU on Nov. 5. Note: Texas doesn’t qualify as a quality opponent.
  2. Oklahoma - After laying a pair of stink bombs in the first three games, the Oklahoma’s offense is firing on all cylinders. The defense, however, is still questionable, though they did show signs of life against Texas. Out of the next four games, only two (K-State and Texas Tech) present potential challenges. Things will get very interesting on Nov. 12 when the Sooners host Baylor in Norman, which will likely serve as the de facto Big 12 Championship Game.
  3. West Virginia - The Mountaineers are sitting at 4-0 with a pretty respectable schedule that features wins over BYU, Missouri and Kansas State. However, their last two wins against BYU and K-State have been close, and Mizzou is looking worse and worse by the week. Skyler Howard is competing over 65 percent of his passes this season with seven touchdowns and four interceptions, so he’s definitely shown improvement over last year’s mediocre campaign. The Mountaineers will get their first crack at a shootout this week as they head to Lubbock this weekend. The following two games will be against TCU and Oklahoma State, so we’ll find out a lot about WVU in the near future.
  4. Oklahoma State - The Cowboys survived a scare against an Iowa State squad in Stillwater last weekend, but Iowa State is a much-improved squad. Their only losses were a narrow one in Waco and the Central Michigan debacle. Mason Rudolf is and NFL talent at quarterback, but their running game still leaves a lot to be desired. The defense is far from perfect, but this is the Big 12, so who cares?
  5. Kansas State - K-State is 3-2, but they’ve been pretty solid in conference play. The Wildcats fell to the Mountaineers in Morgan town by one point, and they were able to beat Texas Tech in Manhattan last week. However, that Stanford loss definitely doesn’t look as good as it once did, and the offense has been pedestrian at best. They head to Norman this week, and their place in these rankings will depend on how much of a fight they’re able to put up.
  6. TCU - The Horned Frogs have a disappointing (yet not unforgivable) overtime loss to Arkansas at home coupled with the shootout loss against the Sooners. However, their most damning performances both came in victories against South Dakota State and Kansas. They needed a last-second field goal (along with some missed field goals from Kansas) to knock off the Jaybirds, and they gave up A LOT of yardage and points to the Jackrabbits. No bueno.
  7. Texas Tech - Pat Mahomes is probably the most talented quarterback in the league, but their defense is the same as it’s been. In two weeks, the Sooners could probably rush for 500 yards against the Raiders if Lincoln Riley feels like it. Let’s hope he does.
  8. Texas - Garrett Buechele’s brother throws a nice deep ball. Their running backs are pretty good. Malik Jefferson is probably the best player in the conference. Outside of those three things, things in Austin are awfully bleak, and Mr. Charlie is on his way out of town (in all likelyhood). The Longhorns wanted to beat OU for him, and they came up short. Will the players now throw in the towel? It would be hilarious to watch, if so.
  9. Iowa State - I think the Cyclones are headed in the right direction. After looking abysmal in the beginning, they’ve played Baylor and Oklahoma State to one-score games. It’s not enough to bring them out of the bottom two, but a win over Texas this week certainly would.
  10. Kansas - Nice effort against TCU, Jaybirds!