By Chris Williams
I’m going to give a Big 12 men’s basketball power poll here at CF every Friday for the rest of the season. Doing this today was not an easy task. It actually reassured me just how difficult the league is this season. Feel free to post your polls after reading as many of these spots could realistically go a few different ways.
1 – Texas, 16-0, 1-0 – Before Wednesday night, I knew that the Longhorns were really good. After seeing them play in person, there is no doubt that right now, they’re the best team in the Big 12 if not America.
2 – Kansas, 15-1, 1-0 – Kansas is clearly the second best team in the league. They’re struggling a bit right now though with last week’s loss to Tennessee and a fairly close road win over Nebraska.
3 – Missouri, 14-3, 2-0 – This one is hard to believe isn’t it? I know…I know…the Tigers were supposed to be down this year. With wins over Texas Tech (on the road) and Kansas State so far in Big 12 play, it appears as if the Tigers just might be an upper tier league team again this season. It’s hard to tell though at this point. Their losses to Oral Roberts and Richmond in the non-conference still make a guy double take.
4 – Kansas State, 14-2, 1-1 – After their loss to Mizzou, K-State bounced back nicely by destroying A&M by 23.
5 – Baylor, 13-2, 1-1 – These next few spots are an absolute mess. Yes, it is hard to put a Baylor team that just lost to Colorado at five but again, the game was at Colorado. Rumor has it, the Bears are still in hibernation after competing inside of the always beautiful Coors Event Center. Baylor is 3-1 on the road this season. That gives them the edge.
6 – Oklahoma, 10-6, 1-1 – The 10-6 looks ugly…I get that. But the young Sooners have a ton of talent and their Big Monday win over rival-Oklahoma State could be the momentum grabber that Jeff Capel’s team needed.
7 – Oklahoma State, 13-3, 1-1 – The Cowboys killed Tech at home and lost at Oklahoma. That’s a fairly predictable start to Big 12 play for this team.
8 – Texas A&M, 12-4, 1-1 – The Aggies have beaten Nebraska and been rolled by Kansas State. Their non-conference body of work isn’t terrible with their losses coming to Washington, New Mexico and West Virginia. A one-point over Minnesota was impressive. Still, the season will be an uphill climb for this team as injuries have and will continue to be an issue.
9 – Texas Tech, 12-4, 0-2 – Tech has a better collection of non-conference wins than Iowa State in Washington, Stanford and Oregon State. However, losses to New Mexico and Wichita State are not flattering.
10 – Iowa State, 11-5, 0-1 – No quality wins but no bad losses sum up the early season for the Cyclones. After putting Texas down by two at the half on Wednesday, we know that this team has the talent to play with anybody. Can they match that same intensity level for the rest of the season? If so, the Cyclones could very well go dancing. Iowa State has the potential and talent to be a top five team in the league.
11 – Colorado, 10-6, 1-1 – I don’t think that the Buffs will be that bad this year. They played Texas tough. They beat Baylor at home. They also took Arizona and Gonzaga to the wire at the beginning of the season.
12 – Nebraska, 12-5, 0-2 – Doc Sadler’s team is at the bottom today but they’ve been solid in two league losses to Kansas and Texas A&M.
Missouri @ Oklahoma
Texas Tech @ Kansas
Kansas State @ Colorado
Oklahoma State @ Baylor
Texas A&M @ Texas
Iowa State @ Nebraska