Big 12 Power Rankings: The Big 12 isn’t the Best Conference, You Guys Edition

Posted by Big 12 Team on February 20th, 2017

We are now fewer than three weeks away from Selection Sunday and the committee has already had real conversations about which teams should be in, which teams should be out, where they should be seeded and where they will eat after the bracket is announced. The strength of each of the six power conferences is no doubt another topic the committee has discussed, which is why we need to have an honest talk with ourselves about where the Big 12 currently sits. The league has something of a body image problem. One year ago, the Big 12 was in the best shape of its life. It actually looked forward to leg day, but it’s been a different story ever since. Needless to say the league gained a few pounds during the holidays — just enough to notice it cannot fit into its favorite clothes anymore and needs to find a few good pairs of sweatpants. That’s all it is. Because the ACC is the best game going in 2017. The Big 12 is a little puffier in the midsection and its legs are hardly recognizable. But it’s great that we were able to talk this out. The power rankings are up next.

Kansas Celebrates What Appears to be an Insurmountable Lead for Another Big 12 Title (USA Today Images)

1. Kansas — all voted 1st – “This team is good.” – Nate Kotisso (@natekotisso)

2. Baylor — average: 2.2 – “The Bears’ odds of becoming a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament took a major hit with back-to-back losses to Texas Tech and Kansas. While Baylor isn’t likely to win the Big 12 regular season championship, the Bears are still firmly in position to challenge Kansas in the upcoming Big 12 Tournament and make some serious noise into late March.” – Justin Fedich (@jfedich)

3. West Virginia — average: 3.0 (not unanimous) – “There nothing more to say about the 14-point collapse at Allen Fieldhouse other than, ‘It is what it is.’ The Mountaineers held Kansas to 50 points and under 30 percent shooting for over 37 minutes before allowing 34 points over the final eight minutes of the game. It is exceptionally rare to see Bob Huggins teams lose intensity like that, but the one thing that is holding this team back has been a propensity to blow big leads.” – Drew Andrews (@DrewAndrews24)

4. Iowa State — average: 3.8 – “Winners of three in a row and four of their last five games, the Cyclones have finally strung together some impressive Big 12 wins and are a safe bet to make the NCAA Tournament for the sixth straight season. The team deserves all the credit for its current stretch of play, but it’s fair to question its sustainability, as Iowa State has shot a staggering 46.4 percent from beyond the arc over its last five games. Steve Prohm will certainly take the result, but most teams simply cannot rely on that kind of accuracy over the long term. Furthermore, all that firepower hasn’t led to as much success inside the arc as expected. Over those same five games, Iowa State shot just 46.3 percent on two-point attempts, falling considerably short of season average (50.7%) and Big 12 play (49.2%). With the postseason drawing near, the Cyclones would benefit from a little more balance, lest they be subject to a repeat of their 2014 first round upset.” – Brian Goodman (@BSGoodman)

5. Oklahoma State — all voted fifth – “After opening conference play 0-6, the Cowboys have fought their way back to a surprising .500 record. Things will get more difficult down the stretch, however, as Oklahoma State must travel to Kansas State and host Kansas in Stillwater.” – Chris Stone (@cstonehoops)

This is Oklahoma State coach Brad Underwood. You might as well give him the Big 12 Coach of the Year award right now to save us all a lot of time. (USA Today Sports)

6. Texas Tech — average: 6.4 – “The Red Raiders tried to capitalize on West Virginia’s tendency to give up late leads but couldn’t find their rhythm from the field in overtime. Keenan Evans has registered four straight games with 20 or more points, including a career high 28 on Saturday. A favorable schedule down the stretch could allow the Red Raiders to win three of their last four games.”- DA

7. Kansas State — average: 6.6 – “KenPom projects all four of the Wildcats’ remaining regular season games as decisions of five points or fewer. A 3-1 finish would put the Wildcats on good enough footing for the postseason, but a 2-2 finish or worse could mean that Bruce Weber‘s team will need a run to the finals in the Big 12 Tournament. A healthy and productive D.J. Johnson is key.” – BG

8. Texas Christian — all voted 8th – “TCU is one of three teams in the Big 12 with a 17-10 overall record and a sub-.500 mark in conference play. The Horned Frogs find themselves on the wrong side of the bubble at the moment, but with Kansas and West Virginia on tap this week, they could throw a monkey wrench in both the bubble picture and next week’s rankings.” – NK

9. Texas — average: 9.2 – “Assuming he doesn’t bolt for the NBA, Texas guard Andrew Jones has the potential to be one of the best guards in the Big 12 next season. He is averaging 12.4 points, 4.1 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game in league play as a freshman.” – CS

10. Oklahoma — average: 9.8 – “At least Oklahoma has Texas (experiencing an equally disastrous season) to beat when the Sooners are not good enough to defeat any other team in the Big 12.” – JF

Big 12 Video/GIF of the Week 

No video or GIF this week. Instead, here is a picture of Kansas coach Bill Self from his team’s insane comeback win against West Virginia last Monday night (via @plbutcher99 on Twitter). So what are we looking at? It’s Self’s hair. Or, maybe it isn’t his hair? Either way, it appears Self has been inspired by Oklahoma State football coach Mike Gundy to grow a mullet of his own, is dissatisfied with progress of the mullet and is keeping the style just to spite us all. The things you can do when you win the Big 12 every single year.

Five Big 12 Games To Watch

  • Monday: Iowa State at Texas Tech (8:00 PM CT, ESPNU)
  • Wednesday: TCU at Kansas (6:00 PM CT, ESPN2)
  • Wednesday: Oklahoma State at Kansas State (8:00 PM CT, ESPNU)
  • Saturday: West Virginia at TCU (1:00 PM CT, ESPN)
  • Saturday: Baylor at Iowa State (3:00 PM CT, ESPN)
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