January 17, 2006….This is Judgment Week for the Big 12 that will separate the pretenders, from the contenders. After last nights impressive come from behind win for the Missouri Tigers over Kanas, they seem to be catching lightening in a bottle and resurrecting a ship that was sinking fast under Quin Snyder.
Last weekend all road teams
entered Saturday needing victories to really shake up the conference. All but
one, Iowa State, came home victorious. For the first
time in 31 tries, Kansas State beat the Jayhawks. The last time
they won against them was January 17, 1994 when they also won at Allen
Fieldhouse. The Wildcats came back from being down by 12 points in the second
half. This is all too familiar for Kansas as they blew a 9 point lead late
against the Tigers last night.
Other games saw Colorado winning at Missouri which was only the second time they
have done that since 1973 and the first time since the Big 12 Conference was
formed. Oklahoma won another nail bitter in the last
seconds at Texas A&M, making their first three conference games being
decided by four points total. Oklahoma State gave Baylor their first loss at home
for the year,…it was their first game at home since they were put under
probation and couldn't play a regular season schedule. Before the Bears knew it
they were down 10-0 as they missed their first six shots and turned the ball
over 5 times in that stretch.
Also this past weekend other
notable games saw many road teams coming into places to pull out upsets.
Miami walked out
of the Dean Dome with its second victory over the Tar Heels in their history.
Alabama not only came in wearing crimson, they
made Wildcat fans leave looking red on their faces as Kentucky lost another
home game. This team looked like a Top 20 team for sure and now might be losing
their way out of the NCAA bubble. Washington came into Pauley with a win over
UCLA, something they haven't done in 19 years. Syracuse won at Cincy as they welcomed the
Bearcats to the Big East. And Michigan
State beat the Buckeyes as
Iowa State fans were hoping Ohio State keeps winning to pull their RPI up.
The Big 12's top ten scoring
leaders in league play are dominated by Juniors which have five of the first
six, and six in the top ten. Oklahoma's Taj Gray is 20th in
scoring for the only Sooner in the top 20.
Big 12 tidbits….Baylor guard Aaron Bruce has made at least one three pointer in his last 27 games. The school
record is 29.
Colorado in league play is last in scoring
defense giving up 78.3pts/game and is seventh in scoring with 67pts/game.
Colorado as a
team is first in league play in blocks with 6.67/game.
Kansas is 1-2 for the first time in Big
12 play. Freshman PG Mario Chalmers is averaging 14.4pts/game in last five
games. Three of first five players who lead the Jayhawks in scoring are
freshman, the other two are sophomores. Kansas is second in conference play in
rebounding and assists. The Jayhawks have no player in the top ten in scoring
during league play.
Kansas State is third in league play for
rebounds. The Wildcats Cartier Martin has scored in double figures in every game
Missouri's Thomas Gardner leads the league
in scoring with a 26.5pt/game in conference play. He is also second in three's
made with 17. So far player of the year for the Big 12.
Nebraska is second in 3-point FG% defense
only allowing .268%. The Cornhuskers lead the league in scoring defense during
league play allowing only 50pts/game.
Oklahoma's 45 points were the fewest for a
winning team since the Big 12 started.
Oklahoma State leads the league in FG% shooting
54%. The Cowboys are third in 3-point FG% defense allowing only
Texas is 4-1 vs the AP top 25 teams.
They held Villinova to its fewest points this year last
Texas A&M is second behind
State in league play in
turnover margin at +5.33 where ISU is +6.00
Texas Tech player Jarius Jackson
has scored 20 or more points in 6 of his last 8 games.
Texas (2-0)- (1/17-Tech, 1/21-@Baylor)-
good week to maybe not have Buckman
Missouri (3-1)- (1/21-@Kansas St.)- right
now have legit go to guy in Gardner. Now can they play with
Oklahoma State (2-1)-(1/21-Colorado)- Cowboys
started 2 JC transfers, 2-freshman and soph Curry. Just keep reloading and
shooting very high %.
Nebraska (2-0)-(1/17 Iowa State,
1/21@Kansas)- Can the Cornhuskers keep home court safe and pull one off against
a depressed Jayhawk team? If they want to stay in this spot they will as riding
high right now.
Oklahoma (1-2)-(1/21-Texas Tech) Yes the
Sooners can't score but every team except ‘Nova and West Virginia have played
OU's pace of the game.
Texas A&M (1-2)-(1/18-@Kansas St., 1/21-@Iowa St.)- Can the Aggies split on the road and
try to avenge the loss at home to OU last weekend. Still feel this is a tough
team and will finish stronger.
Colorado (1-2)-(1/18-Baylor, 1/21@Okie
St.)- With so many seniors and a scorer in Roby, this team will create problems
in the way they put up the three.
Texas Tech (2-1)-(1/17 @Texas, 1/21-@Oklahoma)-
Clearly the toughest schedule of the week. Not many teams in the country would
get a split this week; if they do they move up the ladder as survived against
Iowa St last weekend. Need a third scoring option.
Kansas State (1-2)-(1/18-Texas A&M,
1/21-Missouri) Already have a road win in the league, of all places Kansas. If keep home
court clear this week can get back in the race. Becoming a better rebounding
10)Kansas (1-2)-(1/21-Nebraska)- Blown two
late leads with a young team
who do not have a leader. Will need several days to defend a tough and hungry
11)Iowa State (1-2)-(1/17-@Nebraska, 1/21-Texas
A&M)- A make or break week for the Cyclones. They must win both games to
offset letting a road win slip away against Texas Tech and already losing one at
home. Iowa State over their last six games are shooting 82% from the free throw
line and lead the league FT% for conference games. Getting to the line will be
huge for ISU this week as they play much stronger inside post players this
12) Baylor (0-2)-(1/18-@Colorado,
1/21-Texas)- If there is any road game to win, its at Colorado as they will
have only three thousand there at the game.