Big 12 Power Rankings: Week 13

Here’s how the Big 12 looks with two weeks left in the regular season and still three huge games left on the schedule.

1. Baylor 9-0, 5-0, last week: 1. This week: at Oklahoma State. Not the defense’s finest day on Saturday, but it’s all about winning for Baylor right now. The Bears will likely pass Ohio State in the BCS eventually, but no amount of style points will be enough to vault over Bama and Florida State. America will be watching Baylor in primetime against Oklahoma State this week, though. It’s an opportunity.

2. Oklahoma State 9-1, 6-1, last week: 3. This week: vs. Baylor. OSU still controls its fate in the Big 12 race, and Saturday’s game in Stillwater will likely serve as the de facto Big 12 title game with two weeks left in the season. That’s a credit to Mike Gundy holding this team together after a loss in the conference opener. By the way, how long do we have to wait before Clint Chelf’s speed is no longer “deceptive?”

3. Texas 7-3, 6-1, last week: 2. This week: Idle.
The Longhorns were completely outplayed by Oklahoma State at home. Brace yourself for another week of prognostication on Mack Brown’s future. Texas needs a little help and can’t come anywhere close to the BCS without a Big 12 title. If OSU loses to Baylor next week, Texas can win the Big 12 in Waco on Dec. 7.

4. Oklahoma 8-2, 5-2, last week: 4. This week: at Kansas State. The Sooners need absolute mayhem ahead of them in the standings to get back in the Big 12 title race, but beating K-State in Manhattan is never easy. The big question for Oklahoma is can Trevor Knight grab hold of the QB spot down the stretch this season?

5. Kansas State 6-4, 4-3, last week: 5. This week: vs. Oklahoma.
It was hard to look in the crystal ball and see an eight-win season when the Wildcats were 2-4, but if K-State can beat Oklahoma and Kansas, it will become reality on the way to a bowl game. Another incredible coaching job from Bill Snyder.

6. Texas Tech 7-4, 4-4, last week: 6. This week: Idle. When Texas Tech takes the field for its season finale, it will have been a month and nine days since its last win. Not what the Red Raiders envisioned after a 7-0 start. The inability to stop the run has railroaded a promising season.

7. TCU 4-7, 2-6, last week: 8. This week: Idle.
The goals have progressively grown smaller for TCU, but the task of motivating a team playing only for pride now. The loss to K-State assured TCU will miss a bowl for the first time since 2004, and it may get worse for the Frogs with Baylor still ahead. It’s been a long, steady drop from the top 15 when TCU began the season with a strong performance against LSU.

8. Kansas 3-7, 1-6, last week: 10. This week: at Iowa State.
Kansas officially has three wins and has to leap ahead of West Virginia considering the thorough beatdown it handed the Mountaineers in Lawrence. Montell Cozart made some magic happen in his first career start, and KU is clearly a different team with a dual-threat quarterback at the helm. Jake Heaps just hasn’t been productive enough, and running the ball requires a lot less finesse.

9. West Virginia 4-7, 2-6, last week: 7. This week: Idle. I don’t buy that Dana Holgorsen’s job is in jeopardy this season, but that will change if he doesn’t produce by 2014. “I guess this would be an all-time low,” he said after the game. That’s certainly correct in regards to his time as the head Mountaineer. WVU frittered away a likely bowl berth and suffered its most embarrassing loss since joining the Big 12.

10. Iowa State 1-9, 0-7, last week: 9. This week: vs. Kansas.
Hard times in Iowa State. Despite having a worse record than KU all season long, I gave the Cyclones a break because of a difficult nonconference schedule. No longer, and ISU didn’t play well after outgaining Oklahoma 123-25 in the first quarter and jumping to a 10-3 lead.