After an off-season featuring the loss of the head coach, backup QB, and half its 2016 class, the media still ranked the Bears as the fourth best team in the Big 12. The Bears come in behind Oklahoma, TCU, and Oklahoma State.
Per Baylor’s release, this is the third best ranking the team has received since the Big 12’s inception in 1996.
The ranking is a testament to the strength of Baylor’s roster. Seth Russell was one of, if not the best quarterback in the country before his injury against Iowa State. K.D. Cannon is one of the best receivers in the country, and the running back depth featuring Shock Linwood, Johnny Jefferson, Terence Williams, and JaMycal Hasty is incredible.
After a long summer, the Bears will have an easy August before facing Oklahoma State in the fourth game of the season. By then, the Bears should have a good idea if the team many had in the top 10 before everything can once again contend for a Big 12 title. The Bears are a difficult team to place right now, but they have the talent to still beat anyone in the Big 12, although Oklahoma and Baker Mayfield were always going to be a difficult challenge.
Here is the full poll:
1. Oklahoma (24) 258
2. TCU (2) 222
3. Oklahoma State 202
4. Baylor 156
5. Texas 151
6. Texas Tech 141
7. West Virginia 126
8. Kansas State 88
9. Iowa State 59
10. Kansas 27
Teams earn 10 points for first place, nine for second place, and one point for last place. Someone ranked Kansas 9th, and two people ranked TCU 1st.
The voters expect Texas to make a move this season. With heightened expectations, the Longhorns may not accept another non-bowl season, given the media believes they should certainly be in a bowl. If the Longhorns have a bad season, they could join Baylor in looking for a head coach after this season.