By Chris Moore, CycloneFanatic.com WBB Blogger
The Big 12 Conference season has begun in women’s basketball. Here’s what went down in week one of league action.
Big 12 Players of The Week:
Player: Andrea Riley, Oklahoma State Newcomer: Chuckey Jeffery
Iowa State (12-3, 0-2) – The Cyclones took a couple of steps back this week with losses against Nebraska and Texas A&M. But don’t be too upset Fanatics, as these losses came to two outstanding teams that will be in the NCAA tournament come March. The main concern right now for Iowa State is the fact only player showing up is Allison Lacey. In the Big 12, that can’t happen. The Cyclones need to find other players to contribute. The 20th ranked Cyclones were 5-for-29 from 3-point range in their last two games. The Big 12 does not get any easier as Iowa State will travel to Colorado on Jan. 16.
Kansas State (10-6, 2-0)- It is Big 12 play. The Wildcats are showing why the Big 12 is the toughest conference in the nation. They might not have shocked everyone, but they sure did me as they went 2-0 this week. Kansas State whooped Kansas then went to Missouri and beat the Tigers by 15! Where was this team in the non-conference? This just goes to show anyone can beat anyone, at anytime. The Wildcats will look to continue to shock me as they travel to Oklahoma State on Jan. 16.
Kansas (10-5, 0-2)- The Jayhawks are looking for an identity right now, as they look to bounce back from losses to Kansas State and Oklahoma State this week. I really never felt that this team was that good but I really didn’t think they were that bad either. To get beat by Kansas State, by 24 points is just insane. The Jayhawks have now dropped three games in a row and will look to get back to winning on Jan. 17 when Missouri comes to town.
Nebraska (15-0,2-0)- The ninth-ranked Huskers played like a top 10 team this week, just like they have been doing all season long, with wins over Iowa State and Texas. Kelsey Griffin has been named a mid-season Wooden Award candidate and the Huskers are clicking right now. They’ll look to remain unbeaten, as they will face Brittney Griner and the Lady Bears on Jan. 17.
Colorado (11-4, 1-1)- Colorado went 1-1 this week by beating up on Missouri but then laying an egg against Texas Tech. The big surprise though was freshmen guard Chuckey Jeffery earned her first Freshman of the Week award. Jeffery averaged 15 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and five steals in the wins over Yale and Missouri. The Buffaloes will now host Iowa State on Jan. 16.
Missouri (10-5, 0-2)- The Tigers are kind of in a downward spiral right now as they have dropped three in a row and the last two have not even been close. Colorado and Kansas State beat up on the veteran Missouri team who really needs to come together because I really think the next game, could make or break this team. The Tigers will travel to Kansas on Jan. 17.
Oklahoma (11-4, 1-1)- The 13th ranked Sooners beat Texas Tech 73-58 but then ran into Brittney Griner and the Lady Bears and dropped to 1-1 in conference play. Despite the loss, Oklahoma has played well without Whitney Hand, who has been out since November, and still could be a team that surprises a lot of people. They will get that chance as they face Texas A&M on Jan. 17. Oklahoma State (14-2, 2-0)- Hello Andrea Riley. Riley scored 43 points in the win against Baylor then scored 30 in the win over Kansas, and the 19th ranked Cowgirls are rolling. Riley earned her third Big 12 player of the week award this year and I would not be shocked if she got it again this week. Oklahoma State now will face a hot Kansas State team on Jan. 16.
Texas (11-5, 0-2)- The 21st ranked Longhorns, like Iowa State, have now dropped two in a row to Texas A&M and Nebraska. It will be interesting to see how this team bounces back as they are a little bit shocked right now. Texas will face Texas Tech on Jan. 16. Texas A&M (14-1, 2-0)- The Aggies had an impressive week beating Iowa State and Texas by an average of 22 points. The eighth-ranked Aggies are looking like a team that refuses to lose right now. But Texas A&M can’t get to comfortable as they face another top 25 team in Oklahoma on Jan. 17.
Texas Tech (13-3, 1-1)- The Red Raiders went 1-1 this week losing a tough game to Oklahoma but then bouncing back and beating a good Colorado team. Texas Tech is one of those teams that is either a contender or a pretender. We will get a better idea of which one that is come Jan. 16 as Texas comes to town.
Baylor (14-2, 1-1)- The ninth-ranked Lady Bears went 1-1 this week with the upset coming from Oklahoma State. But Baylor bounced back to beat Oklahoma by 10 and are still in good shape for the rest of the season. Brittney Griner continues to show her dominance inside as she had 12 points, 11 blocks, and nine rebounds. She is currently sitting at 99 blocks on the year, just 20 away from the Big 12 record. Griner is also a mid-season Wooden Award candidate. Also a key note is that Baylor guard Mellissa Jones missed both games this week with a stress fracture in her leg. Baylor will play a HUGE game against Nebraska on Jan.17.
(The reason Nebraska and Baylor are ranked 9th is because on the ESPN polls they are tied in votes.)