Daily Word: Big 12 race getting clearer?

Each weekday, our college hoops experts discuss the biggest issues, trends and themes in college basketball.

1. The Big 12 has five teams within a game of each other. Who has the most to lose or gain this weekend?

Andy Katz: Texas. The Longhorns are suddenly in the race with the road win at West Virginia. If the Longhorns can beat Kansas, Texas is in the mix with the other contenders. There are six teams that should be in the NCAA tournament -- Oklahoma, Kansas, Baylor, West Virginia, Iowa State and Texas -- with any of them capable of beating the other.

Jeff Goodman: Texas. The other four teams are virtual locks for the NCAA tourney. Shaka Smart and the Longhorns could basically punch their ticket if they could claim a road win at Kansas after one at West Virginia.

C.L. Brown: West Virginia. Winning on the road has been tough in the Big 12, and the Mountaineers are the only team in the top five of the league to lose a game at home. They'll have to steal a few on the road to make up for it, which won't be a given against a Texas Tech squad that played Baylor to the wire in Lubbock before losing 63-60.

2. Duke's next three games are on the road. Do you see the slide continuing for the Blue Devils?

Katz: Nothing should surprise anyone. Not having Amile Jefferson has rocked this young team. Experience was going to be light heading into the season, and to take one of the key anchors off the team was going to hurt. But Mike Krzyzewski is the best coach in the country and maybe of all time. I expect him to figure this out sooner than later.

Goodman: No. I think Coach K and Duke will take two of the next three games, starting with a victory at NC State on Saturday. Then I think the Blue Devils split road contests against Miami and Georgia Tech.

Brown: Continuing? No. But nothing is going to come easy. That's just the nature of the current roster. NC State is always a tough road trip for Duke. Then it faces Miami after just one day of preparation. Georgia Tech is much improved. It should be noted that even when Jefferson gets healthy and returns to the lineup, it won't be a panacea for all that ails the Blue Devils.

3. Who do you have on upset watch this weekend?

Katz: Villanova. The Wildcats have been sensational this season, but they will face their toughest test in Kris Dunn of Providence. Villanova coach Jay Wright said Dunn's defense has been a tough matchup for them in previous games. If Dunn can have a dominating game at both ends and the Friars win the battle of the boards, they could steal this game, which has now been moved to Sunday.

Goodman: MU's undefeated season ends Sunday at Temple. The Owls are tough to figure out, but Fran Dunphy's team has shown the ability to knock off talented teams. Temple swept Cincinnati and also won at UConn.

Brown: Virginia. I won't go so far as to say Syracuse has its swagger back, but its three-game winning streak coupled with Jim Boeheim's return to the bench makes it seem like the 0-4 start in the ACC never happened. The Orange will be a confident bunch headed into Charlottesville,