Big 12 Power Rankings: Week 9

Nick Cremona

1. Oklahoma State-
The Cowboys once again distanced themselves from the pack when they manhandled Baylor 59-24 last weekend. It has been noted that the Cowboy secondary is susceptible to giving up big plays, but that has yet to become an issue in any game this season. As a matter of fact, the Cowboys lead the nation with 17 interceptions and are among the nation’s top-five teams in terms of turnover differential.

2. Oklahoma-
It was a tale of two halves for the Sooners against Kansas State last week. Before eventually handing the Wildcats their first loss, the Sooners held a slim six-point lead at the half. The game was all but over after the Sooners scored 21 unanswered points in the third quarter. The Sooners aren’t out of the woods yet. Texas A&M comes to Norman this week in search of a win after dropping a shocker to Missouri last week.

3. Kansas State-
Not many people thought the Wildcats could keep up their historic pace much longer, and well, they were right. Now Wildcats head coach Bill Snyder has the task of keeping the team on track so they don’t drop any more games. It’s still only one loss and the Wildcats are still very much in the race for a conference championship. Oklahoma State stands in their way this week however.

4. Texas-
What a performance from the Longhorns last weekend against a decidedly awful Kansas team. Any time a team can rush for more than 400 yards and hold an opponent to negative rushing yards it’s definitely a good thing. Texas has shown improvement nearly every week and that’s key when a team is rebuilding.

5. Missouri-
In what some dubbed as their first SEC game, the Tigers defeated the Aggies after trailing by 11 points at the half. Freshman quarterback James Franklin showed incredible poise against the Aggies and is really coming into his own as a football player. Running back Henry Josey also added 162 yards on the ground to lead all rushers in the game. The Tigers’ defense has kept them in almost every game they have played so far.

6. Texas A&M-
You know the story by now — the Aggies gain an early lead only to squander it late in the game and earn their third conference loss. Not exactly what coach Mike Sherman had in mind at the beginning of the year. The Aggies have fielded one of their most talented teams in the past two decades but can’t seem to get the whole team on the same page. If there’s a time to get things straight for the Aggies, it needs to happen against the Sooners this week.

7. Baylor-
After last week’s debacle at the hands of Oklahoma State, the Bears have now lost two conference games in a row. It’s the third overall loss for the Bears and now they are all but eliminated from the conference title race. Quarterback Robert Griffin III is still putting up gaudy numbers but his team’s not winning anymore. The Bears travel to Missouri to take on the upset-minded Tigers. It could be back to obscurity for the Bears if they keep this slide going for much longer.

8. Texas Tech-
Well, well, what do we have here? Looks like a classic case of “upset hangover.” Just a week removed from a win in Norman against the Sooners, the Red Raider got trounced by the Cyclones last week. The Red Raiders looked poised to make some noise but laid an egg in the end. It’ll be a tough week to get back on track against the Longhorns, but quarterback Seth Doege always has the potential to blow a game wide open.

9. Iowa State-
The Cyclones’ four-game losing streak came to an end last week when they handed Texas Tech a tough home loss. Freshman quarterback Justin Barnett has moved into the starting role and is performing quite well to boot. This Cyclones team isn’t really strong in any one aspect of the game, but they do have several players that just flat-out give their all every single week.

10. Kansas-
We knew the Jayhawks were having a down year but they were downright pathetic against the Longhorns a week ago. As a team the Jayhawks were unable to get literally anything going offensively and actually finished with negative rushing yards. The running game was supposed to be a strong suit of this year’s team, but clearly the Jayhawks need to go back to the drawing board.