Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Big 12 power rankings: Week 1
By David Ubben
What do you get on a week when the Big 12 goes 11-1? Not a lot of movement in the power rankings. I'm not going to penalize teams for playing cupcakes and I'm not going to reward teams for winning by 100 against an FCS team or the equivalent of one. We're not voting on a BCS champion. We'll get to conference play eventually, and the weekly shakeups will be pretty pronounced. That said, future big wins will be rewarded. Three teams (Oklahoma, Colorado and Iowa State) have opportunities this week.
But I totally agree with all of you, your team deserves to be higher. Except Texas.
Each team's preseason ranking in parentheses.
1. Texas (1) The Longhorns were unimpressive in Week 1, but not unimpressive enough to fall out of the top spot. Defense would have wowed if the secondary had held on to a couple balls.
2. Oklahoma (2) Might have jumped Texas with a blowout win over Utah State. Utah State is no patsy, but Oklahoma has big problems that need fixing and should have won by at least 15-20. Big test comes for the secondary this week in Christian Ponder & Co. at Florida State.
3. Nebraska (3) Even beating Western Kentucky 115-0 wouldn't have moved Nebraska up. The quarterback situation will be interesting to watch, but we'll see how Bo Pelini really feels about his three QBs the first time the Huskers get caught in a close game. Taylor Martinez has injected even more optimism into an already feverish fan base.
4. Missouri (4) Awful first half, followed by a dominant second half. The Tigers' offense found their stride after 30 minutes, but won't be tested for another month until their conference opener against Colorado on Oct. 9, followed by a showdown in College Station the following week.
5. Texas A&M (5) Jerrod Johnson's deep balls were a little off, but Texas A&M's business-like win over Stephen F. Austin raised few other questions. Solid performance from the offensive line is a good sign.
6. Texas Tech (7) The only team to move up in the rankings this week, Texas Tech lacks a glaring weakness like Kansas State has at quarterback. If Texas Tech's defense can continue to improve, the Red Raiders will be a complete team.
7. Kansas State (6) Feels a little unfair to move the Wildcats down a spot after one of the best wins in the conference over the weekend, but the teams above them didn't do anything to fall a spot, and simply put, Texas Tech would beat Kansas State head-to-head. Daniel Thomas looked pretty difficult to stop on Saturday, but if somebody does it, Kansas State is cooked.
8. Oklahoma State (8) Teams 4-8 in these rankings are very, very close, and you could probably make a solid argument for any order between them, but if Oklahoma State's offense keeps hanging 60 on its weak nonconference opponents, it'll probably move up.
9. Iowa State (9) Got a much-needed win in Week 1, but the Cyclones might be in for a long Saturday. Iowa beat them in Ames 35-3 last year in Iowa State's worst performance of the year. They'll try to atone for the loss this week in Iowa City against the No. 9 Hawkeyes.
10. Baylor (10) Robert Griffin's return was a great sign for the Bears, who have a big chance to throw their name onto the national scene with a game against TCU in Fort Worth in two weeks. But first: Turner Gill-less Buffalo at home.
11. Colorado (11) Buffaloes looked good and lent a little credence to some of the fan optimism in Hawkins' fifth year, but it'll take more than a win over a 3-9 team a year ago with a true freshman at quarterback to move the Buffaloes up. Like, say, a win on the road against Cal this week.
12. Kansas (12) Yikes, guys. Won't get any easier with No. 19 Georgia Tech bringing its option attack to Lawrence. Jayhawks may have to wait another week for their first touchdown.