Big 12 rankings through Week 2: KU on top, OSU climbs to fourth

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 The Good and The Bad in this week’s rankings. Note OSU getting a nice bump with the huge win against K-State, though I don’t expect the Cowboys to finish that high in the standings. For a week at least, they’ve earned it. Plus one for a road win, and minus one for a home loss.

1. Kansas (18-1, 4-0, +2) – The Good: Cole Aldrich (above) has picked it up a notch, the Jayhawks have two of the conference’s seven road wins and Texas and Kansas State both lost last week. The Bad: Tyshawn Taylor and his Facebook account. Projection: 27-4, 13-3

2. Kansas State (16-3, 3-2, even) – The Good: The Wildcats beat Texas the day it was ranked No. 1. The Bad: Losing at home to an Oklahoma State team playing without its point guard? Talk about a letdown. Denis Clemente and Jacob Pullen need to heat up. Projection: 25-5, 12-4

3. Texas (17-2, 3-1, +1) – The Good: I got nothing. The Longhorns looked bad in Manhattan, then got handled by a Connecticut team that’s been reeling. The Bad: Texas still has games against Kansas and Missouri left against the North schools, not to mention road trips to Oklahoma State, Texas A&M and Baylor. Projection: 25-6, 11-5

4. Oklahoma State (15-4, 3-2, +1) – The Good: Pretty simple here. Best win in the league so far, so James Anderson (above) and the Cowboys have earned a spot in the top four. Winning in Manhattan was huge. The Bad: Point guard Ray Penn’s injury is a concern. I think Saturday’s game was an aberration but back-to-back wins this week against Texas A&M and at Missouri would go a long way in proving OSU is a contender. Projection: 20-10, 8-8

5. Baylor (15-3, 2-2, even) – The Good: The Bears are a handful of possessions away from being 4-0, including a win in Lawrence. This is a dangerous team. The Bad: Still pointing to that loss in Boulder. And Baylor had its chances against Kansas. Projection: 23-7, 10-6

6. Missouri (15-4, 3-1, +1) – The Good: The Tigers have enough depth (Backup guard Miguel Paul, above with coach Mike Anderson, came to the rescue Saturday) and play good enough defense to be in every game. The 3-1 start includes a road win. The Bad: Missouri still hasn’t played its A game yet. And it’ll need that Monday to have any chance at winning at Kansas. Projection: 21-10, 9-7

7. Texas A&M (14-5, 3-2, even) – The Good: The Aggies continued to hold serve at home, holding off Colorado on Saturday. The Bad: A&M barely won at home against Oklahoma and Colorado last week. Projection: 18-12, 7-9

8. Oklahoma (11-8, 2-3, even) – The Good: The Sooners have improved, especially on defense. The Bad: They failed to win games they had a chance in at A&M and at Tech last week. And they don’t seem to catch many breaks, the latest piece of bad luck being Willie Warren’s ankle injury. Projection: 16-14, 7-9

9. Texas Tech (14-5, 2-3, -1) – The Good: The Red Raiders got on the board with wins against Iowa State at Oklahoma. The Bad: They may not win for another month. The best chance is Feb. 6 at home against Oklahoma State. Projection:17-13, 5-11

10. Iowa State (12-7, 1-3, -1) – The Good: The Cyclones host Colorado on Saturday. The Bad: Lucca Staiger (above) wasn’t a star, but his departure hurts. ISU will struggle to break .500 in league play. Projection: 16-15, 5-11

11. Colorado (10-9, 1-4, -1) – The Good:  This might be the most improved team in the league. They Buffs have been competitive in all their Big 12 games. The Bad: They still can’t finish, and they’ve had chances to against K-State and A&M. Projection: 14-16, 5-11

12. Nebraska (12-7, 0-4, -2) – The Good: The Cornhuskers have been good enough to stay in games well into the second half. They trailed Missouri by one point with 10 minutes left on Saturday. The Bad: They’re 0-4 and looking at a long season. Projection: 16-15, 4-12

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