There weren’t any surprises on Saturday (save Texas Tech’s impressive disappearing act on defense), but here’s where the Big 12 Power Rankings sit after nine weeks.
1. TCU (6-1, 3-1 Big 12). Last week: 1. This week: at West Virginia. The Frogs dropped 82 on Texas Tech, which is just unfathomable thinking back to what this offense looked like a year ago. TCU’s schedule sets it up to make a run to the playoff, and Ole Miss’ loss to LSU on Saturday only helps.
2. Kansas State (6-1, 4-0). Last week: 2. This week: vs. Oklahoma State. This game felt closer than it really was. K-State slowly pounded away at the Longhorns, and showcased how dominant its defense can be. Texas had just 196 yards of offense on 52 snaps, and Texas completed just 13-of-25 passes.
3. Baylor (6-1, 3-1). Last week: 3. This week: vs. Kansas. The Bears were off this week, and I’m sure they devoted their free time to studying up on the Jayhawks this week.
4. West Virginia (6-2, 4-1.) Last week: 4. This week: vs. TCU. The Mountaineers had a slow day from their best player, WR Kevin White, and still took care of business on the road at Oklahoma State. That’s a solid win. Stillwater’s not a friendly place to play, and WVU added a couple garbage time touchdowns to make the final score a little prettier, at 34-10.
5. Oklahoma (5-2, 2-2). Last week: 5. This week: vs. Iowa State. Bob Stoops was hush-hush about Trevor Knight’s health after Knight reportedly left the stadium with his arm in a sling. He left the Kansas State loss briefly with a shoulder injury but returned and played well. It’s a safe bet he didn’t practice much last week, but his health will be something to watch moving forward.
6. Oklahoma State (5-3, 3-2). Last week: 6. This week: vs. Kansas State. The Cowboys didn’t do anything to change my mind that their early season rise into the top 15 was hollow. OSU has now played two quality opponents in two weeks and been outplayed in both weeks. The Cowboys now have one offensive touchdown in their last 10 quarters.
7. Texas (3-5, 2-3). Last week: 7. This week: at Texas Tech. Texas dodged a scare when their best remaining offensive lineman, Kent Perkins, went down early against Kansas State. Even when he returned, Texas’ running game didn’t get much better. The Longhorns’ top two running backs, Malcolm Brown and Johnathan Gray, averaged 2.8 yards on 16 carries.
8. Iowa State. (2-5, 0-4). Last week: 9. This week: vs. Oklahoma. The Cyclones have two weeks to fix their defense. A week after Texas scored 48 against Iowa State, the Longhorns got shut out. Oklahoma is traditionally not a great team to iron out kinks against. Iowa State hasn’t beaten OU since 1990.
9. Texas Tech (3-5, 1-4). Last week: 8. This week: vs. Texas. Well, the Red Raiders didn’t give up 100.
10. Kansas (2-5, 0-4). Last week: 10. This week: at Baylor. Clint Bowen is settling in and I’m betting KU knocks somebody off soon. This behind-the-scenes piece from Matt Tait at the Lawrence World-Journal was a great read.