Big 12 Power Rankings Week 2: Cyclones rising

We’ve played two games in the Big 12 conference and it looks like this league is going to be a lot of fun. We’ve shifted some teams around after getting our first true looks at the group as a whole. How does your team stack up with the rest of the conference?

10. Oklahoma (6-7, 0-2) [-1]

The Sooners came into conference play under performing, and now injuries have forced them into a 5 game losing streak. Oklahoma may be falling into a deep hole with no way out. They have a tough stretch of games ahead. They came close against TCU, but with their next game being against a K-State squad with some pent up anger, things don’t look so hot in Norman.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 @ Kansas State

9. Texas (7-7, 1-1) [+1]

Texas got a much needed win against Oklahoma State on Wednesday night. The Longhorns looked to be the conference’s weekest link, but a win against an up and comer like the Cowboys leads me to believe that maybe coach Smart has found something in his squad. Hopefully this wasn’t a one game wonder, or Texas’ dance hopes are as good as dead.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 @ Iowa State

8. Oklahoma State (10-4, 0-2) [-1]

The Cowboys looked to be a darkhorse in the conference after their non-conference slate, but after just 2 games in the league they’ve left me with a lot of questions. A blowout loss to West Virginia is understandable for a team like OSU, but their last game against Texas really has me scratching my head. It’s unfortunate for the Cowboys to have played two rough games in conference because it isn’t getting any easier.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 @ Baylor

7. TCU (12-2, 1-1) [-1]

The Horned Frogs came up short against Kansas to open up Big 12 play, and I thought that may just be the start of their fall. However, I was pleasantly surprised with their play against Oklahoma. They responded rather strongly and earned a tough league victory, the first for coach Dixon. If TCU can contend with West Virginia on the road on Saturday, we’ll know if the Frogs are for real, or if they’re just faking us out.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 @ West Virginia

6. Texas Tech (12-2, 1-1) [-1]

How about these Red Raiders? Down a slot after upsetting West Virginia? Yeah, I’m a cold, cold man. I’ve been really surprised with Tech and how they’ve played this season but I’m not drinking the Kool-Aid just yet. The big win is great for morale and momentum but I’m interested to see how they respond on the road against Kansas to follow it up. We’ll learn a little more about coach Beard’s team in the next few days.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 @ Kansas

5. Iowa State (9-4, 1-1) [+3]

The Cyclones started out slow, and even caught an L this past week, but I still bumped them up 3 slots in this week’s rankings. Why? Well, they hung tough, and had every chance to win against Baylor on the road, who just may be the best team in the league. They were just one last second shot away from knocking off the Bears and I was impressed with how ISU responded to adversity. It’s still much too early to know if they’re for real or not, though.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 vs. Texas

4. West Virginia (12-2, 1-1) [-1]

Bob Huggins’ crew came in hot as the sun but slipped up in Lubbock. They have been a great team but I think they may be a tad bit overrated. They have a chance to get a bounce back win against TCU, and I think that matchup could determine things for both of those teams. If the Mountaineers hope to contend in this conference, they need to kick it in gear and start beating up on somebody. Look out TCU.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 vs. TCU

3. Kansas State (12-2, 1-1) [+1]

Kansas State came into conference play riding what some called a false record. They had a sparkling 11-1 mark, but only versus weak opponents. Then, they went into Lawrence and nearly walked out with a win. K-State had a really great shot at knocking off KU but couldn’t capitalize at key moments. That being said, any team that can walk into Aleen Fieldhouse and compete at that high of a level is a team to watch. The key test is if they can keep it rolling.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 vs. Oklahoma

2. Kansas (13-1, 2-0) [no change]

Kansas is clearly the front runner in the Big 12 once again, but they have some issues that need to be addressed. Defensively, they have problems like never before under Bill Self. Thankfully, they can put up points in a number of ways given their versatile offense, but Kansas need to figure it out on defense if they want that 13th straight title. You can’t run around giving up 84 points a game in this conference and hope to keep getting wins, I don’t care how good you are on the other side of the ball. One night, those shots aren’t going to fall, and then what?

NEXT GAME: 1/7 vs. Texas Tech

1. Baylor (14-0, 2-0) [no change]

Baylor started out conference play with a historic beatdown in Norman, but followed it up with a near death experience on their own floor against Iowa State. Clearly the Bears has the talent but sooner or later they’re going to lose. Everyone does. At least, in this conference they do. In the meantime, Baylor is the best team in the Big 12, until someone else proves otherwise.

NEXT GAME: 1/7 vs. Oklahoma State

Questions, comments or concerns? Hit me up on Twitter @JBane87. I’d love to talk hoops with you and get an outside perspective.

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