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Big 12 Power Rankings: Week Eight

West Virginia v Texas Tech Photo by John Weast/Getty Images

We’re roughly halfway through the college football season. Let that sink in for a minute. Baylor and West Virginia are in the Top Ten in the polls and both sit at 6-0. Oklahoma, also boasting zero conference losses, lurks, though their two out-of-conference losses are not what I would consider “good” losses. Oklahoma State only has one loss in conference, so they could be a factor as well, especially since they get West Virginia in Stillwater this weekend. Then there’s the rest of the conference...

10. Kansas Jayhawks

Kansas has scored 69 points all year. In seven games. While the Jayhawks did put up a decent fight at home against Oklahoma State, the team in clearly the bottom of the barrel in the Big 12.

9. Iowa St. Cyclones

Iowa State did not play this weekend and there is no reason to move them from ninth place.

8. Texas Longhorns

The Stronghorns lost in Manhattan, 24,21. Which, fine, Manhattan is a tough place to play, as Baylor fans know good and well. Texas got Synderballed to death, though. Time of possession was 38:27-21:33 in favor of the Cats and, despite K-State turning the ball over three times, Texas was still out-gained in yardage. We’ll see a feisty team and coach fighting for their lives in Austin this weekend (Hex Tex), but, uh, Texas might not make a bowl game.

7. Texas Tech Red Raiders

What. A. Performance. Pat Mahomes, stand up and take a bow for the greatest performance in a losing effort the college football world has ever seen. In a game that broke the record for most records set in a game (95% sure that is a true statement), Mahomes threw for 734 yards and 5 TDs on 88 attempts. And rushed for 85 yards and 2 TDs on 12 carries. Mama, there goes that man! Tech, however, surrendered 854 yards (Baylor still holds the record with 872 yards!) in this game and couldn’t quite muster up enough to beat OU. With basically no defensive stops, Tech’s two turnovers were likely mistakes they could not have afforded to make. The Raiders will get an upset this season, though they won’t be competing for a Big 12 crown.

6. Kansas State Wildcats

K-State and TCU are making up the “solidly-average” group in the Big 12 right now. The Wildcats are fresh off a win in which their slow, strangling game plan worked to perfection. I still don’t think the Wildcats have the offense to keep up if the game starts to get high-scoring, so we’ll see how they fare against the true spread offenses on the Big 12. They’ll get a bye this week to prepare for the home stretch.

5. TCU Horned Frogs

Oh, boy. I cannot remember the last time the Frogs were worked over like they were against West Virginia. I think this is partially due to the fact that West Virginia is pretty darn good this year, yet I would be remiss to not mention how lackluster the Horned Frogs looked in this game. For a spread team, TCU only managed 4.8 yards per pass and 148 yards total with a marginally better 152 yards rushing. Again, the Mountaineer defense is stout. TCU also isn’t a team that scores 10 points in a game.

4. Oklahoma State Cowboys

The Pokes beat Kansas by a healthy margin. There isn’t too much else to say about this game or this team.

3. Oklahoma Sooners

Oklahoma can score! Oklahoma also cannot stop a great offense. Baker Mayfield put up 545 yards passing for 7 TDs; on only 36 attempts, no less. Joe Mixon had day, with well over 300 combined rushing and receiving yards. The list goes on. Oklahoma will certainly compete for the Big 12 title, and they can score on any team they want to, but can they keep scoring more points in these wild shootout games? We will see.

2. Baylor Bears

Baylor has the 16th-ranked offense 13th-ranked defense in the nation (S&P+). Hex Tex, y’all.

1. West Virginia Mountaineers

Yes, I moved the Mountaineers up to first place. They deserve it. Holding Texas Tech (albeit, with a less-than-healthy Mahomes) and TCU to a combined 27 points is astounding. WVU held TCU to 2-11 on third downs and had three takeaways. This defense is legit. The Mountaineers have a tough 11am game in Stillwater this weekend. We will see if they can continue their strong defense and maintain their deserved status as the number one team.

Top Four

  1. Alabama Crimson Tide - Texas A&M almost had a chance, then Bama covered the 17-point spread.
  2. Michigan Wolverines - Harbaugh don’t play no games.
  3. Clemson Tigers - They had a bye this week.
  4. Washington Huskies - Huskies beat Oregon State handily.