Big 12 Power Chart: Week 2

Joseph Yeager redoes his power rankings before the Big 12 Conference slate begins with Texas Tech and TCU on Thursday.

There is a big shakeup in this week's power chart. Baylor, facing some admittedly iffy competition, has vaulted to the tippy top of the conference. Texas, following a horn-amputating loss to BYU, has dropped like a lead balloon. And Kansas State, looking a bit more like its old self, has crept back into the middle of the pack after its season-opening loss to North Dakota State.

 

1.    Baylor (+3): Through two games Baylor is averaging 70 points per outing, and if Art Briles hadn't called off the dawgs, that tally would be much higher. Now we can write off Wofford as a silly opponent, but Buffalo held Ohio State to 40 points and cannot be so easily dismissed. In addition to their frightening offense, the Bears are playing good defense. Baylor will be 7-0 going into the Oklahoma game.

 

2.    Oklahoma State (-1): The Cowboys are a very respectable team, but don't appear to be quite as menacing as they did before the season kicked off. The fact that OSU gave up 35 points to UTSA must be a concern for Mike Gundy. As must the Sports Illustrated allegations of flagrant and rampant improprieties within the OSU program. Focus could be a real problem for this team henceforth.

 

3.    TCU (same): There are many observers who think this Horned Frog team is a tin man. They claim the ten-point loss to LSU is a mirage because the Tigers are overrated. And they point to a "mere" 21-point victory over Southeast Louisiana as a "See! I told ya'!" game. But SELA actually has a pretty decent squad, and LSU will finish the season in the top 20, quite possibly the top 15. In other words, don't short TCU just yet.

 

4.    Oklahoma (+1): Bob Stoops should be buying brother Mike the finest steak dinner in town every single night, because the OU defensive coordinator is saving the Sooners' bacon right now. His totally rebuilt defense is carrying the club while the rudderless offense paddles around in circles.

 

5.    Texas Tech (+1): So far, so good in Kliff Kingsbury's inaugural season. His team has taken care of business and actually looks better than most people expected. But an early acid test presents itself when TCU comes to town. If Kingsbury can find some semblance of a running game to keep the Horned Frog front seven somewhat off balance, the Red Raiders could find themselves a surprising 3-0.

 

6.    Kansas State (+3): There was nothing particularly special about KSU's 21-point victory over Louisiana-Lafayette, but the Wildcats did fare better than Texas and West Virginia, and I do not think Kansas is better than Kansas State at this point. Daniel Sams gave the Wildcats a bit of a burst last week, and it will be interesting to see how Bill Snyder handles the quarterback situation from here on out.

 

7.    Texas (-5): Texas imploded in Provo and then the Longhorn program cratered again in Austin. It doesn't take much to cause these guys to go into full-on panic mode. A loss to Ole Miss might just cause the 40 acres to resolve itself into an acrid miasma. It would be an improvement.

 

8.    West Virginia (-1): The Mountaineers are Oklahoma Light at this point. They have a surprisingly stout defense, but are a sloppy mess on the offensive side of the ball. Offensive wiz-kid Dana Holgorsen must be twisting his golden locks into knots about now.

 

9.    Kansas (-1): So miserable is the Jayhawk program that a 17-point victory over South Dakota looks almost like a landmark. But the win was honestly quite ugly, and the joy could be short lived because a victory at Rice is hardly a sure thing.

 

10. Iowa State (same): The Cyclones have had two long weeks to stew over their season-opening loss to Northern Iowa. Now Iowa State is obviously not very good right now, but because Paul Rhoads is a quality motivator, the University of Iowa, ISU's opponent this week, better bring it's A-game.


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