Big 12 power rankings: West Virginia, Texas top the conference entering Week 4
That inspired me to go ahead and rank the whole conference. I’ll try to update these each Friday.
BIG 12 POWER RANKINGS
1. West Virginia (2-0): The Mountaineers have just beaten Marshall and James Madison, but have been impressive in doing so. There are still questions about their defense that won’t be answered until conference play, but I thought they were the Big 12′s best team before Week 1 and they’ve done nothing to lose that perch.
2. Texas (3-0): Say what you will about Ole Miss, but it’s still impressive to me that the Longhorns went to an SEC home stadium and left that convincing a winner. David Ash is really playing well right now, and the Texas defense is strong. At this point in the season, I think you’ve got to base rankings on anything you can use to compare teams, and Ole Miss looked better in its win over UTEP than did Oklahoma.
3. Oklahoma (2-0): Oklahoma was underwhelming in the season opener, and it’s hard to really take much away from the Florida A&M rout. Before it can be considered the Big 12′s best team — much less a national title contender — OU has got to show that its thin offensive and defensive fronts can be dominant against tough competition. The Sooners can begin to answer those and other questions with the tough upcoming three-game stretch, which begins Saturday against K-State. After a second bye in three weeks, OU travels to Texas Tech, where it hasn’t won since 2003, then heads to the Cotton Bowl for the Red River game.
4. Kansas State (3-0): The Wildcats looked very strong in the win over Miami, but then struggled to keep North Texas’ offense off the field. A win Saturday in Norman isn’t completely out of the question, but will be extremely tough considering OU’s typical dominance of ranked teams on Owen Field.
5. Iowa State (3-0): I had Baylor at No. 5 when asked for these rankings on the radio, but after a couple days to think about it, I’ve adjusted. The Cyclones are off this week after a strong 3-0 start that included wins over favored teams Tulsa and Iowa.
6. TCU (2-0): Horned Frogs earned their first Big 12 win last week at Kansas, but it wasn’t particularly impressive. Once you get past the top four in the Big 12, I think there’s a dropoff and not much separates the next several teams at this point.
7. Baylor (2-0): Baylor trailed by 10 points at halftime to Sam Houston State last week, but surged in the second half for a 48-23 win. I like quarterback Nick Florence and think the Bears might surprise some people in the post-Griffin era. We’ll find out a lot about Baylor tonight when it plays at Louisiana-Monroe.
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