Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

Big 12 Power Rankings: Week 5

Lorianne Willett
The Texas football team runs onto the field ahead of their game against Baylor on September 23, 2023 in Waco, TX.

1- Texas Longhorns

Texas heads into week five in the top spot after taking down unranked Baylor 38-6 and stands at its highest national ranking since 2009. One of the three undefeated teams in the conference, Texas football wanted to prove it wasn’t a fourth-quarter team after a late win against Wyoming. Points were proven in Waco as the Longhorns were up 28-3 at the end of the first half. In the third home game of the season, Texas will face the also-undefeated Kansas Jayhawks. Last season, Texas had no problem on the road beating the Jayhawks 55-14, this time, both teams have an undefeated record to fight for.

2- Oklahoma Sooners

Starting the season 4–0, No. 14 Oklahoma takes second place in the Big 12 rankings. The Sooners started the season with an impressive 73-0 victory against Arkansas State, and have not had much trouble with opponents since. In its last game at Cincinnati, quarterback Dillon Gabriel was part of both touchdowns — passing the first and scoring the second. The Sooner defense prevented the hosts from scoring a touchdown, as they ended the game with six points from two field goals.

3- Kansas Jayhawks

Fighting with Texas to keep a spot in the undefeated club, No. 24 Kansas will travel to Austin off a 38-27 home win against BYU. Kansas makes it to the AP poll for the first time since 2019 and currently tops any other team in offensive production in 2023, averaging 37.8 points per game with wins against Missouri State, Illinois and Nevada. Two key players for the Jayhawks are Jalon Daniels, the media’s preseason pick as Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year, who is completing 74.7% of his passes, and running back Devin Neal, who is averaging 6.9 yards per carry.

4- Kansas State Wildcats

Despite starting the season as No. 15, a loss to No. 23 Missouri made the team drop out of the rankings. The Wildcats came back from the defeat by beating UCF 44-31 in the Big 12 opening match, and they don’t look too far from returning to the top 25. Running back DJ Giddens made headlines with four touchdowns and produced 293 yards of total offense with 38 ball touches. The offense has been the strongest group, with defense surrendering to some explosive plays and special teams missing a field goal and an extra point to UCF.

5- TCU Horned Frogs

Since losing to Colorado by three points in its opening game, TCU has bounced back and won its last three games against Nicholls State, Houston and SMU. The team’s 10-game Big 12 conference win streak that began last season and has continued after its win against Houston is at risk as it hosts West Virginia on Saturday. Quarterback Chandler Morris completed 24 of 33 passes and scored a career-best of three touchdowns in his last game against SMU, while Big 12 leading rusher Emani Bailey ran 126 yards to find the end zone. Tight end Jared Wiley also had a career-best and first double-touchdown performance, scoring twice in the first half.

6- BYU Cougars

BYU’s three-game winning streak ended in Lawrence, where the team lost its Big 12 debut game 38-27 to Kansas. The Cougars went into halftime in the lead and dominated the game in passing yards, but ultimately fell to the Jayhawks. Quarterback Kedon Slovis will head to the next game with eight touchdowns and 1,017 yards to his name, and wide receiver Chase Roberts was named SportsCenter’s Highlight of the Night for his one-handed touchdown grab to give his team the win at Arkansas.

7- UCF Golden Knights

In the team’s last game, head coach Gus Malzahn fooled the Kansas State defense with the touchdown scored on a flea-flicker pass from quarterback Timmy McClain to wide receiver Kobe Hudson. Despite the loss to the Wildcats, the Big 12 debutants look like a promising team. First ranked in 2010, UCF started the 2023 season breezing past Kent State with a 56-6 win but soon stumbled upon Boise State, where they would rely on a last-minute field goal to come home victorious. 

8- West Virginia Mountaineers

Given the tough challenge to beat No. 6 Penn State in their first game, West Virginia didn’t have the upset they wanted. The team had no problem bouncing back from that as they took down Duquesne 56-17, with quarterback Garrett Greene and wide receiver Hudson Clement collaborating on three touchdowns. The Mountaineers started their Big 12 season beating Texas Tech for the first time in five years, with Beanie Bishop, Aubrey Burks and Marcus Floyd showing defensive strength and hopes for improvements. 

9- Cincinnati Bearcats

Cincinnati started the season 2–0, but could not keep the undefeated record up with losses to Miami of Ohio and Oklahoma, bringing its record to 2–2. The Bearcats’ performance in Utah will determine whether its record will be predominantly winning or losing. In the team’s opening game against Eastern Kentucky, quarterback Emory Jones showed up with five touchdown passes with the extra points of placekicker Carter Brown, who made 10 solid kicks in the game, including a field goal.

10- Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa State fell to 1–2 during week three but managed to bring the record back to level after a win over Oklahoma State. The Cyclones will face No. 14 Oklahoma, currently sitting undefeated in the season. First-year starting quarterback Rocco Becht has already made impacts on the team, passing for 348 yards and three touchdowns in its most recent win. Becht completed 27 of 38 attempts, pulling the Cyclones out of the bottom of the Power 5 teams in average points per game.

11- Oklahoma State Cowboys

Oklahoma State will play in front of a sold-out crowd against Kansas State when they return from a bye-week this weekend. To impress their fans, there is a lot of improvement they must do, including sorting out their offensive issues. Currently, the offense has an average of 22 points per game, with a 55.8% completion percentage and 221.8 passing yards per game. According to quarterback Alan Bowman, the team is close to “clicking,” but is not there yet.

12- Houston Cougars

The Cougars fell 36-13 to TCU in their Big 12 debut, but have looked promising in their non-conference games. Houston started the season with narrow results, beating UTSA 17-14 and losing to Rice 43-41 after two overtimes. The team will head to Lubbock aiming to repeat their 38-7 recent home win against Sam Houston State, where quarterback Donovan Smith walked away with no interceptions. 

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About the Contributor
Lorianne Willett, Photo Editor
Lorianne is a Journalism and Global Sustainability junior from San Antonio, Texas. Currently, she is the Photo Editor. In her free time, she enjoys reading and playing tennis.