After two weeks of Big 12 Conference play, the only thing that's clear so far is that there's not a clear favorite in the Big 12 South. Heading into conference play, it appeared that Oklahoma was that team, but after losing to Colorado, and struggling to ever pull away from a Texas team that I think is down this year, the Sooners have shown their vulnerable.
1. Oklahoma (5-1, 1-1)
Oklahoma is still my pick to win the Big 12 South at this point, but I'm not as confident in them as I was two weeks ago. They've shown that they have some holes just like every other team in the country, and this week's match up against Missouri could be the difference between the Cotton Bowl and a run at the national title. If they win this game, I think they'll be favored in each of their remaining games, but if they lose, it could be the beginning of a very slippery slope. There's a lot on the line this week for Bob Stoops and his Sooners.
T-2. Texas A&M (5-1, 2-0)
At halftime, I thought the Aggies would be sliding down to No. 4 in my Monday rankings, but an extremely gutsy second-half performance keeps them tied at No. 2, with the big showdown scheduled for Saturday against Texas Tech in Lubbock. If the Aggies win this game, I think they have a shot at the Big 12 South title that could be settled on November 3 in Norman, Okla. The wins may not be pretty, especially from this point forward, but it appears that there is not a dominant team in the Big 12 this year. If the Aggies can survive their trip to Lubbock for the first time since 1993, they'll be in the driver's seat.
T-2. Texas Tech (5-1, 1-1)
Texas Tech has the most explosive offense in the country this year. But the Red Raiders' defense just hasn't shown that's it capable of stopping anyone. That's the only reason they aren't considered an elite team right now, and it's also the reason why they will have to prove their worth this weekend against A&M. If Tech can stop the rushing attack of the Aggies on defense (along with the possibility of the new-found passing game), they should be able to put up some points on offense. If they come out on top, the Red Raiders will be the clear No. 2 team in the South, with a showdown against Oklahoma at home looming to settle the division title.
4. Texas (4-2, 0-2)
Last week, I had Texas and Oklahoma State tied for fourth, but after an extremely gutsy performance against the Sooners, I'm no longer divided on this spot. Texas showed that they're capable of playing with the big boys in the Big 12, even if they aren't as tall as they've been in years past. However, I just don't think Texas is that good this year, and if Colt McCoy continues to get bounced around like a pinball, it will get even worse for the Horns. They looked better this week, but it's easy to get up for the rivalry game against Oklahoma. The question becomes, how will Mack Brown get his troops back up for a road game against Iowa State this week after starting the conference season 0-2.
5. Oklahoma State (4-2, 1-1)
What a collapse. The Cowboys laid it on the Aggies in the first half Saturday night at Kyle Field, only to come out and blow it in the second half. Granted, the Aggies played lights out in the second half, but Mike Gundy showed once again that he's just not capable of winning on the road. For whatever reason, he just can't get it done. OSU is now 1-11 on the road under Gundy, and they'll have to try again this week against Nebraska, with a road game at Oklahoma still on the schedule. I think the best case scenario for the Cowboys is 5-3 in conference play, but 4-4 is likely and 3-5 is not far away.
6. Baylor (3-3, 0-2)
Baylor had what might have been it's last chance for a Big 12 Conference win this weekend at home against Colorado, but they were never really in the game. The Buffs beat the Bears 43-23 and never looked back. I don't think Baylor will win another game this year, barring some sort of miracle upset. With home games against Texas, Texas Tech and Oklahoma State, and games on the road against Kansas, Kansas State and Oklahoma, the Bears--and Guy Morriss--are done.
Websider's Big 12 South Report
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