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Oklahoma Sooners, Oklahoma State Cowboys

Week Eight Big 12 Power Rankings | The Rise Of Texas And Fall Of Oklahoma State

M. Hofeld

matthofeld

Well, I guess we were justified in our sliding of West Virginia last week. Not only did the Mountaineers go down in Ames, they looked really bad in doing so. That, perhaps, gives us some validation for not putting WVU at the top of the rankings after Oklahoma lost to Texas at the Cotton Bowl.

It was a limited slate of action in the Big 12 last weekend but it was enough for us to agree that they Oklahoma State football program is in a bad spot right now. The Cowboys have dropped two of their three conference games with the only win coming against Kansas. The bye week couldn’t have arrived quick enough for OSU.

Week Seven – The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

The Good

Just when you thought Matt Campbell’s stock could rise any further than it already had, he pulls off yet another epic upset. This man is about to cash another big check and he absolutely deserves is, regardless of which school writes it to him.

Texas Tech is a program that is full of surprises. The Red Raiders started off the Big 12 slate with a Thursday night game in Ft. Worth and came out on the other side with another impressive road win. I’m almost ready to say that I was wrong about Kliff Kingsbury.

The Bad

West Virginia dropped from being in the driver’s seat to fighting for a ticket to Arlington with just about everyone else. Even worse, Will Grier’s Heisman stock has plummeted over the last two weeks.

Kudos to the Texas Longhorns for winning, and keeping their top spot in the conference, but for the second time in the last three weeks they were held scoreless in the second half. That’s got to be a little bit alarming.

The Ugly

Oklahoma State is going to own this section outright. They were disastrous on both sides of the ball. After struggling to muster offensive production in the first half, the Cowboys limped into the locker room with a 6-3 lead at the break. Then the defensive struggles hit as Kansas State scored on every second half possession on their way to a 31-12 blowout win.

Power Rankings

Texas gains unanimous support this week as the #1 team in our power rankings. Oklahoma moves up a spot to #2 and West Virginia at #3. We were all unanimous with the top three and the bottom three. It’s was the teams in the middle that we didn’t quite know what to do with.

 Heartland Sports Week Eight Big 12 Power Rankings
Ranking Points
1. Texas 40
2. Oklahoma 36
3. West Virginia 32
4. Texas Tech 27
5. Iowa State 25
6. TCU 18
7. Baylor 17
8. Kansas State 16
9. Oklahoma State 8
10. Kansas 4

Zack

1. Texas – I can’t believe I’m doing this, but the Longhorns look like the best team in the conference so far. That embarrassing loss to Maryland in the season opener is long gone now.

2. Oklahoma – The Sooners benefit from a week off in which a lot of teams suffered surprising losses, but they should get right back on track this weekend against TCU on the road.

3. West Virginia – The Mountaineers were embarrassed by a surging Iowa State, but they’re much better than they looked on Saturday. I drop them a couple of spots this week, but they’re still top 3 for now.

4. Texas Tech

5. Iowa State

6. TCU

7. Kansas State

8. Baylor

9. Oklahoma State – It’s a sad day in Stillwater when there is a legitimate question as to whether or not the Cowboys will make a bowl game.

10. Kansas – No game, means no win in conference play, so the Jayhawks reign supreme at the bottom.

Rich
1. Texas – Without the starting quarterback available, the Longhorns pulled out a narrow win over the a lesser opponent. Regardless, UT has posted the best resume of the conference at this point in time. It’s hard to punish a program for winning even if it is Texas.

2. Oklahoma – Taking the week off, the Sooners have time to get used to Ruffin McNeill assuming the role of DC. Hopefully it translates on the field moving forward. Regardless, the talent pool remains deep here and OU has the best chance of appearing in the championship alongside the No. 1 team right now.

3. West Virginia – A blue print has been laid as Will Grier failed to throw the ball effectively against ISU. Unable to adjust to the coverage, the quarterback took numerous sacks or simply ran toward the sideline and out of bounds. It wasn’t pretty for the Mountaineers and the road to the end just got even more difficult.

4. Iowa State

5. Texas Tech

6. Baylor

7. TCU

8. Kansas State

9. Oklahoma State – The Cowboys look out of sorts at this point in the year. Refusing to utilize the best player on the field, Justice Hill, doesn’t bode well for the program’s future either. Riding a two game losing streak, the number could easily grow to six in the coming weeks. Maybe it’s time to scrap the experiment that is Cornelius.

10. Kansas – Unable to secure a win in conference play will continue to put this program at the bottom of the list. While there’s not really a chance right now, can KU get a win over TCU in a few weeks?

Craig
1. Texas – The Longhorns barely escaped the Bears last weekend winning by a score of 23-17. This isn’t the first time a team in the conference has had to simply win and stay alive this season. Although it wasn’t pretty, a win is a win.

The biggest question will be how the Longhorns handle their quarterback situation. Sam Ehlinger left the game with a shoulder injury, and Shane Buechele came in to replace him. At least the Longhorns know they are capable of winning with either guy on the field. As long as they’re winning, they’ll be at the top of the rankings for me.

2. Oklahoma – The Sooners had a much needed bye week. This worked out perfectly in their favor with all the losses that top teams suffered around the country. It’s always nice when you can climb the rankings without stepping out on the field.

The Sooners have the best offense in this conference, and they are more than capable of still winning another Big 12 Championship. We will have to see how many changes are made on the defensive side of the ball to determine whether or not Oklahoma will bounce back and finish the season strong.

3. West Virginia – The Mountaineers suffered a brutal loss to the Cyclones in Ames, Iowa this weekend. Even when the score was fairly close, it still seemed like Iowa State was in full control of this game.

When you have a defense as poor as West Virginia has, you have to rely on offense. The offense simply didn’t show up last weekend. I still think the Mountaineers are contenders to win this conference. We will have to see how they recover from a loss like this in the middle of the season.

4. Texas Tech

5. Iowa State

6. Baylor

7. TCU

8. Kansas State

9. Oklahoma State – Has there been a bigger disappointment in the Big 12 this season besides the Cowboys? I had Oklahoma State as a top three team in the conference to begin the season. Turns out that pick was totally wrong.

Much of the blame is being put on the offensive line and on starting quarterback Taylor Cornelius. However, there’s plenty of blame to go around. The toughest part of the season lies ahead for the Cowboys, it’s time to see what they are made of.

10. Kansas – Good news for the Jayhawks, basketball season is right around the corner! Even better news, they didn’t lose last weekend because they were on a bye week. That’s a double win, right?

Kansas of course is at the very bottom of this conference. However, don’t count them out for a major upset late in the season. This team is talented, they just need to figure out how to win ball games.

Matt
1. Texas – A little bit of a hangover is expected after the Red River Rivalry. I’m not worried about the Longhorns performance against Baylor. It lackluster play continues after the bye week then we may need to revisit this conversation.

2. Oklahoma – Coming off the bye week, the Sooners are benefactors of Iowa State’s upset win over West Virginia.

3. West Virginia – The pressure is on the Mountaineers now and they’re just now moving into the meat of their schedule. This allows opportunity to restore themselves at the top of the power rankings or continue to slide.

4. Texas Tech

5. Iowa State

6. TCU

7. Baylor

8. Kansas State

9. Oklahoma State – It’s unbelievable that Oklahoma State finds themselves right here. How come no one is asking how their offensive line got so bad?

10. Kansas – Remember not too long ago when we thought there was a chance that the Jayhawks wouldn’t be the worst team in the Big 12?

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