Big 12 Power Rankings: Baylor is Losing its Mind Edition

Posted by Nate Kotisso on January 27th, 2014

Here was a team that was picked to finish third in the Big 12 by the league’s 10 coaches. They fought their way to the Maui Invitational championship game where they lost to a still-unbeaten Syracuse team. They didn’t seem phased by arguably the best recruiting class in decades against Kentucky, beating the Wildcats on a neutral floor in Arlington. But for whatever reason, Baylor currently stands at 1-5 in the Big 12 with two-thirds of league action still to play. Granted, two of those losses came at Iowa State and at Kansas, but the Bears haven’t been able to take care of business at home either, falling to Oklahoma on January 18 and Texas over the weekend. But hey, if it took six games to get us all freaking out over Baylor, it’s entirely possible they can turn their season around in the final 12 contests, right? (Right?!) Well last week, our power rankings had two groups of two that found themselves tied. We did better this time around: only one!

As best told by this photograph, there are a lot of things not going Scott Drew's way lately. (Rod Aydelotte/Waco Tribune-Herald)

As best told by this photograph, there are a lot of things not going Scott Drew’s way lately. (Rod Aydelotte/Waco Tribune-Herald)

1. Kansas — 4 points (previous: 1st; Brian, KoryNate & Taylor: 1st)

Comment: “What can be said about the Jayhawks that hasn’t already been said? Wayne Selden Jr. has been a different player since Big 12 play began and Andrew Wiggins had a career-high of 27 points against TCU. Curious to know how Joel Embiid’s knee is after bruising it in the second half Saturday. Based on how little media coverage it got after the TCU game, it probably isn’t serious.” – Nate Kotisso (@natekotisso)

2. Oklahoma State — 10 points (previous: 2nd; Brian, Nate & Taylor-2nd, Kory-4th)

Comment: “Marcus Smart played his worst game of the season, as this chair would tell you if it could, you know, talk. No matter, though, since the Cowboys still beat the Mountaineers.” – Brian Goodman (@BSGoodman)

3. Texas — 13 points (previous: T-6th; Kory-2nd, Brian-3rd, Nate & Taylor-4th)

Comment: “The Longhorns are peaking after rattling off three straight wins against ranked teams. Rick Barnes is doing a great job with the team he has, but they will only go as far as their backcourt takes them.” – BG

4. (Tie) Iowa State — 17 points (previous: T-3rd; Taylor-3rd, Brian-4th, Kory & Nate-5th)

Comment: “The Cyclones did exactly what they needed to by getting back in the winning column after dropping three straight. The schedule doesn’t get any easier in the next week and a half, though.” – Taylor Erickson (@tc_erickson)

4. (Tie) Oklahoma — 17 points (previous: 5th; Kory & Nate-3rd, Brian-5th, Taylor-6th)

Comment: “The Sooners have wins over Texas, Iowa State, and Baylor, and could add Oklahoma State to their list of victims tonight at home.” – Kory Carpenter (@Kory_Carpenter)

6. Kansas State — 23 points (previous: T-3rd; Taylor-5th, Brian, Kory & Nate-6th)

Comment: “The Wildcats came awful close but a buzzer-beater at Texas and a Melvin Ejim blocked shot helped K-State to go 0-fer the road this week. Still waiting for them to win a meaningful game outside Manhattan, Wichita or any place with ‘Kansas’ in its name.” – NK

7. Baylor — 29 points (previous: T-6th; Brian, Nate & Taylor-7th, Kory-8th)

Comment: “As good as Baylor was early in the season, they’ve been equally as bad as of late. Those non-conference victories will help, but Scott Drew’s club needs to start compiling league wins to avoid sweating it out on Selection Sunday.” – TE

8. West Virginia — 31 points (previous: 8th; Kory-7th, Brian, Nate & Taylor-8th)

Comment: “They played Oklahoma State close in Stillwater on Saturday, but the Mountaineers have lost four out of five.” – KC

9. Texas Tech — 36 points (previous: 9th, Brian, Kory, Nate & Taylor-9th)

Comment: “The Red Raiders have comfortably distanced themselves from TCU in the power rankings. Tubby Smith’s team has been salty as of late, thanks to an offensive rebounding percentage in league play that ranks ahead of Texas and Kansas State, two teams with reputations for being excellent on the offensive glass.” – BG

10. TCU — 40 points (previous: 10th; Brian, Kory, Nate & Taylor-10th)

Comment: “Budding freshman Karviar Shepherd will require surgery on his non-shooting hand after injuring it in the Kansas loss on Saturday; he’ll be out for “an indefinite amount of time,” according to the Dallas Morning News. This will leave Trent Johnson with only seven scholarship players going forward. It’s hard to win a game, much less build a winning program, when you’re this undermanned.” – NK

Five Big 12 Games You Better Watch This Week

  1. Monday: Oklahoma State at Oklahoma (8:00 PM CT, ESPN)
  2. Wednesday: Iowa State at Kansas (8:00 PM CT, ESPNU)
  3. Saturday: Baylor at Oklahoma State (1:00 PM CT, ESPN)
  4. Saturday: Oklahoma at Iowa State (3:00 PM CT, Big 12 Network)
  5. Saturday: Kansas at Texas (3:00 PM CT, ESPN)
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