Conference Breakdown: No. 7 Big XII

This hasn't been a banner year in Big XII recruiting. However there is some talent coming into the league, especially at Kansas and Oklahoma State.

Best Class

Clearly the school that got the most done in terms of quality and quantity in this league is Oklahoma State. The Cowboys brought in a talented four-man class, three of which are four-star prospects, and then a highly thought of junior college point guard in Jeff Newberry.

On the wing the Cowboys added two very good scorers. They have a big time shot maker in Joe Burton and then a strong and physical driver in Jared Terrell. Burton proved himself all spring and summer as someone who can really put the ball in the basket. He is at his best in catch and shoot situations, but he is very much improved off the dribble and is very solid in the mid-range with strength and athleticism.

There might not be a more physical wing in the country than Terell. The New England native is excellent at getting all the way to the rim and has all the strength and athleticism you could want. He needs to improve as a shooter, but Terrell can defend multiple positions and has a lot of natural ability.

A name that was under the radar until July was Mitch Solomon. The 6-foot-9 interior player is an absolute bruiser. Solomon is very physical, can really rebound, and has a decent touch out to 15 feet. He racked up the offers during his play in July, and that made Solomon a must get.

Overall this is an excellent group for the Cowboys. It is one of the top 20 classes in the country, and should be the type of class to really build a program with since all prospects should be on campus through graduation.

Other winners

Outside of Oklahoma State, at this point only the Kansas Jayhawks would jump to the forefront as a team that would be classified as a winner. As usual Bill Self went after some elite recruits, and he is working on what could be an excellent class.

Big XII Rankings
1.  Oklahoma State
2.  Kansas
3.  Oklahoma
4.  West Virginia
5.  Baylor
6.   Texas Tech
7.  Texas
8.  Iowa State
9.  Kansas State
10.  TCU
Right now the only commitment for Kansas is Kelly Oubre. While that is a small class with only one pledge, Oubre is one of the best in the entire country. He checks in at No. 6 in the class, and combines elite skill with excellent athleticism.

The scary thing with Oubre is just how quickly he is improving. From his sophomore to junior season he made a huge jump, and then he kept getting better from April, to July, and into September. Quite simply the strides he has made are big time. There aren't many players around getting better as quickly as Oubre.

Still this Kansas class has a chance to get much better. The Jayhawks are in the top two for five-stars Jahlil Okafor, Tyus Jones, and Cliff Alexander who will all decide on Friday.

Who could have the biggest impact

This is interesting The easy choice is Oubre because he is an elite talent, but Kansas will likely be loaded on the wing, so he might have to split minutes. Because of that the choice for most immediate impact will be Mitch Solomon.

Top Big XII Prospects
Top Prospect:Kelly Oubre, Kansas
Best Scorer:Joe Burton, Oklahoma State
Best Passer:Jeff Newberry, Oklahoma State
Best Shot Blocker:Khadeem Lattin, Oklahoma
Best Post Player: Mitch Solomon, Oklahoma State
Best Athlete: Kelly Oubre, Kansas
Best Rebounder: Mitch Solomon, Oklahoma State
Best Shooter:Kelly Oubre, Kansas
Solomon could start from the minute he steps on campus with his physical play, toughness, and desire to be good. He will compete with a senior in Michael Cobbins for immediate playing time on the block, and likely the two will be on the court at the same time for long stretches given the rest of the roster makeup that the Cowboys have.

If Solomon continues to develop on offense and get better with his back-to-the-basket game, he could end up being one of the more undervalued players in the class nationally. Solomon is a good enough athlete to defend and block shots, and seems to give maximum effort time out. Kids like him almost never fail, and there is a lot of reason to think that he will be extremely successful early on in his college career.

How did the Big XII Stack Up?

To say this least this hasn't exactly been a banner year for the Big XII. Now Kansas could save the conference with a few late adds, but overall this group lacks elite talent and depth throughout. The recruiting misses from Texas, Oklahoma, and Baylor have hurt the conference somewhat, and now it is on Kansas to save things.

It is amazing to think that with 10 schools in the league, the Big XII has only reeled in five prospects that rank as a four-star or higher with only one of them being in the five-star range.

With that it is clear that the league could be in for some down times in the upcoming years unless the recruiting picks up next season and beyond given that last year wasn't exactly a banner showing for the league outside of Kansas and Baylor.


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