Big 12 Football Power Rankings: Week 3


Non-conference play drags on for another week, as Big 12 football teams wrap up that portion of their schedules before beginning conference play.

Last week’s Big 12 slate was varied in it’s scope, ranging from blowouts over bad teams to big wins on the road to losses in rivalries. The dust has settled, and we learned a few things about some teams, but it’s hard to fully gauge what’s going on until conference play begins in two weeks. With that said, here’s how the current Big 12 power rankings shape up according to Pokes Posts’ vaunted committee of one.

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  • 1. TCU (2-0)

    TCU had their cupcake game last week, annihilating Stephen F. Austin 70-7. The Horned Frogs defense, despite losing several key members the last two weeks, held the Lumberjacks to 167 total yards, 75 of which came on a late touchdown run. Not bad. TCU faces SMU this week, a team that fared pretty well against Baylor in the first week of the season.

    2. Baylor (2-0)

    Baylor pulled away from Lamar in the second half last week, outscoring the Cardinals 31-10 after the break. Still, the Bears are yet to put together a dominant performance, and their defense continues to look a little suspect, which might not be that big of a deal if Seth Russell and company keep putting up big numbers, such as the Bears’ 412 total rushing yards. Unfortunately for Russell, his big numbers included also three interceptions against Lamar. Rice visits Waco this week, fresh off of a bizarre loss to Texas.

    3. Oklahoma (2-0)

    Sep 12, 2015; Knoxville, TN, USA; Oklahoma Sooners head coach Bob Stoops and quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) are interviewed by the media after defeating the Tennessee Volunteers. Oklahoma won in double overtime 31-24. Mandatory Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

    The Sooners’ huge win against Tennessee last week was a monumental one that could very well send the season in an upward-trending path. OU quarterback Baker Mayfield showed incredible resiliency, as did the rest of the team in climbing out of a 17-0 hole in and incredibly intimidating environment. The win wasn’t pretty by any means, and the Sooners’ run game is still yet to get going, but it’s the biggest win by far for any Big 12 team in this young season. OU hosts a surprisingly decent Tulsa team this Saturday.

    4. Oklahoma State (2-0)

    Two games in, and the same questions remain. OSU’s 32-8 win over FCS foe Central Arkansas didn’t exactly go as planned. UTSA provides the Cowboys one final opportunity to figure out the running and kicking games before conference play starts. Mason Rudolph is due for another big game, and could use a final tuneup before facing Texas on Sep. 26 in what will be just his seventh start.

    5. West Virginia (2-0)

    The Mountaineers are quietly building for what could be a darkhorse season, disposing of Liberty 41-17. I’m sure West Virginia would’ve liked to of held the Flames scoreless like they did Georgia Southern in the first week of the season, but they’ll take it. Skyler Howard is looking pretty solid behind center so far. The Mountaineers are off this week before hosting Maryland on Sep. 26.

    6. Kansas State (2-0)

    Kansas State was able to pull away from a UTSA team that gave No.22 Arizona a pretty good scare in their matchup the week before, scoring 30 unanswered points after an early Roadrunners field goal. Wildcats quarterback Joe Hubener played a solid, mistake-free game, running for a touchdown while compiling 301 total yards of offense. Oh, and that UTSA field goal was the only score allowed by Kansas State so far this season. The Wildcats host an okay Louisiana Tech team this week.

    7. Texas Tech (2-0)

    Kliff Kingsbury’s crew put together a very Mike Leach-esque performance against UTEP last week, racking up 684 yards of offense en route to a 69-20 victory at home. Patrick Mahomes looked good again, and failed to throw a pick. The 414 yards given up is actually a small win for the Red Raiders defense, but we’ll see what they’re made of when they travel to Arkansas to face a Razorbacks team looking to avenge a loss to Toledo.

    8. Iowa State (1-1)

    The Cyclones lost their yearly battle with the Iowa Hawkeyes 31-17 on the road in an emotional environment. Iowa state actually led 17-10 at halftime, but had no answer for their in-state rivals down the stretch. Quarterback Sam Richardson had a decent game, but the Cyclones failed to get a running attack going, mustering just 63 yards on 27 attempts. Iowa State’s game with Toledo this Saturday on the road is suddenly looking very daunting.

    9. Texas (1-1)

    Sep 5, 2015; South Bend, IN, USA; Texas Longhorns coach Charlie Strong coaches on the sidelines against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Notre Dame Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

    The Longhorns’ 42-28 win over Rice at home will no doubt be their biggest point total of the season, and it had little to do with the offense, which gained 277 total yards. Defense and special teams were the stars of that game, picking off Rice quarterbacks three times while running back a punt return to the end zone. Texas quarterback Jerrod Heard had a bizarre stat line, with half of his four total completions going for touchdowns, and also running for 96 yards, just 24 less than his passing total. The win was fool’s gold, and the looming matchup against a high-scoring Cal team currently averaging almost 400 yards passing per game could get ugly for the Longhorns. But hey, at least Steve Patterson is gone, right?

    10. Kansas (0-2)

    It’s going to be a long year for the Jayhawks. David Beaty has a very upward climb to get the program back to relevance, and it’s hard to see them winning a single game this year. Kansas was blown out last week by the Memphis Tigers 55-23, and travel to New Jersey this Saturday to face a Rutgers team that should have no trouble handling the hapless team. On the bright side, the team secured a commitment from a talented running back out of Texas, and seem to have a star on their hands with linebacker Marcquis Roberts, a transfer from South Carolina who has put up some impressive numbers in his first two games in Lawrence.

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