The Big 12 Tournament means different things to different teams. While any club would love to tote home the trophy, some will only do so on their own terms.
What the five-day event means to each team in the tournament:
Texas. The Longhorns are a lock to host an NCAA Regional and likely will gain one of the eight national seeds for the Road to Omaha, maybe even No. 1 overall. Winning in Oklahoma City would be nice, but is far from necessary, and coach Augie Garrido has said as much.
Texas A&M. The Aggies also figure to host a regional but put their national seed hopes in peril dropping two of three to Texas over the weekend. They could re-emerge in the role by making the title game, yet likely won't over-stress the pitching to get there.
Oklahoma. Losing two of three to Baylor on the regular season's final weekend put a dent in the Sooners' NCAA hosting hopes. Still, this tournament means more to the state teams, and an extended run could raise the Sooners' stock. They're in it to win it.
Oklahoma State. The Cowboys once owned the old Big Eight Tournament in Oklahoma City. Ironically, since the Texas teams helped form the Big 12, OSU's only title came in Arlington, Texas. The Pokes could use a few wins to assure themselves of a No. 2 seed at a more winnable Regional.
Baylor. Beating the Cowboys and Sooners in back-to-back weekend series should have cemented the Bears' place in the NCAA field. They're clearly playing better, yet probably can't elevate their status much further.
Texas Tech and Kansas State. If the Big 12 gets six teams in the NCAA field of 64, the final spot likely comes down to one these two teams. They have similar records and RPIs, meaning each must do something to distinguish themselves, while neither can take anything for granted in the NCAA picture.
Missouri. A nine-game midseason losing streak crippled the Tigers, who rallied late in the regular season, only to close badly by losing two of three at Nebraska. With losing conference and overall records, the Tigers must win the tournament to extend their season.