Big 12 power rankings: New team leads list, Oklahoma tumbles

Oklahoma led the Big 12 power rankings for the first six weeks, but no longer. After losing to Iowa State on Saturday, the Sooners stumble to the middle of the pack.

Now, the TCU Horned Frogs move into Big 12 favorite as the lone conference unbeaten team left. A couple other teams also showed their potential last Saturday. West Virginia kept things close against the Horned Frogs. Texas Tech continued its dominant performance.

Here’s how the Big 12 shakes out heading into Week 7.

1. TCU Horned Frogs (previous: No. 2)

Last week: 31-24 win over No. 23 West Virginia

This week: at Kansas State

TCU takes its rightful place at the top of the Big 12 and near the top of college football. The Horned Frogs have not trailed by more than 12 points all season long, despite playing three Power Five teams and two ranked opponents at this point. TCU should be favored in every game until it faces No. 12 Oklahoma on Nov. 11.

2. Oklahoma State Cowboys (previous: No. 3)

Last week: Bye

This week: vs. Baylor

Oklahoma State sits in this spot almost by default. The Cowboys’ loss to TCU isn’t bad, but wins over Tulsa, South Alabama and Pitt suddenly look far less impressive. Those three teams have a combined 4-13 record. However, Oklahoma State has upcoming games against Baylor, Texas and West Virginia to earn legitimacy.  

3. West Virginia Mountaineers (previous: No. 5)

Last week: 31-24 loss to No. 8 TCU

This week: vs No. 24 Texas Tech

Even in a loss, West Virginia continues to look good. Every call and bounce seemed to go against the Mountaineers against TCU, but the game was still tied with 3 minutes left.  Winning against Texas Tech this week could get WVU back into the AP Top 25.

4. Texas Tech Red Raiders (previous No. 4)

Last week: 65-19 win over Kansas

This week: at West Virginia

Texas Tech was tied with No. 15 Oklahoma State with 1:12 left to go, before Mason Rudolph ran for a 16-yard touchdown. Other than that game, the Red Raiders are undefeated and have been surprisingly dominant on both sides. Beating Kansas was expected, but the Red Raiders blew them out of Memorial Stadium. An AP Top 25 spot is well-deserved this week.

5. Texas Longhorns (previous: No. 7)

Last week: 40-34 (2OT) win over Kansas State

This week: vs. Oklahoma in Dallas

Since losing to Maryland in the opener, Texas has been tremendous. The defense is playing the best we’ve seen perhaps since Will Muschamp left in 2010. When Sam Ehlinger is on the field, the offense isn’t bad. The Longhorns can give themselves a legitimate Big 12 title shot by upsetting Oklahoma this week.

6. Oklahoma Sooners (previous: No. 1)

Last week: 38-31 loss to Iowa State

This week: vs. Texas in Dallas

The Sooners obviously will rise, but Oklahoma deserves this ranking after losing to Iowa State last week. Oklahoma’s defense absolutely collapsed, and the offense went from effective to tentative in a matter of plays after losing playmakers Ceedee Lamb and Abdul Adams. The Sooners can lose to any team in the Big 12 if they play at that level. For Lincoln Riley’s sake, it better not happen again.  

7. Iowa State Cyclones (previous: No. 8)

Last week: Beat No. 3 Oklahoma 38-31

This week: vs. Kansas

The Cyclones finally have a signature win under Matt Campbell, and it came as 31-point underdogs with a backup quarterback. Kyle Kempt threw for 343 yards and 3 touchdowns in a massive road victory after throwing 2 passes with the Cyclones earlier this season. Now, Iowa State just needs to win three more games to make its first bowl trip since 2011.  Post-season play suddenly looks like a manageable ask.

8. Kansas State Wildcats (previous: No. 6)

Last week: 40-34 (2OT) loss to Texas

This week: vs. No. 6 TCU

Kansas State has played three Power Five teams this season. The Wildcats are 1-2 in those games, beating only winless Baylor at home. Suddenly, this team looks underwhelming. Jesse Ertz is dealing with injuries, which is slowing the offense down. Kansas State will be tested with games against ranked teams three of the next four weeks.

9. Kansas Jayhawks (previous: No. 9)

Last week: 65-19 loss to Texas Tech.

This week: at Iowa State

Kansas looked horrible last week, scoring just 19 points against Texas Tech’s defense. The Jayhawks went down 35-7 and then benched Peyton Bender. They fought back to make it 35-19, before Tech ran off 30 straight points to finish it. The only thing keeping Kansas ahead of Baylor is its lone win over Southeast Missouri State. Otherwise, the Jayhawks have been worse this year.  

10. Baylor Bears (previous: No. 10)

Last week: Bye

This week: at No. 14 Oklahoma State

Baylor gets running back JaMycal Hasty back from injury, which should help the running game dramatically. The defense also continues to get better and Denzel Mims is one of the best wide receivers in the conference. There are plenty of reasons for optimism, but none matter until the Bears get a win.

The post Big 12 power rankings: New team leads list, Oklahoma tumbles appeared first on Diehards.

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