A Trip Around the Big 12 - Week 7

Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports

Despite a loss, KU remains in first; UT is back to within a game of first place; Baylor doubles their win total; TCU still winless

Maybe the Big 12 shouldn’t mail that trophy to Lawrence juuuuuust yet.

After we thanked our "friends" over in Manhattan for knocking off Texas for us, how do they repay us?  By being jerks and beating us!!  Will Spradling had by far the best game of his life (at least against KU) and allowed Texas to move back within a game of the Jayhawks.  I guess we don’t want to win #10 comfortably.

Kansas is still in the driver’s seat, but it’s down to a 1-game lead in the loss column with six games left to play.  Texas is back in the hunt.  Oklahoma, Iowa State, and Kansas State all have five losses now and are three games back in the loss column; they still aren’t technically eliminated, but it’s highly improbable any of those three challenge for first place.

Baylor picked up win #4 over Kansas State this past week.  TCU is still winless.  And Oklahoma State continues their free-fall.  I don’t know if they’re on "the bubble" yet, but it’s got to be close.  Let’s see what the standings look like.

Still the favorite

10-2, 19-6            (8) Kansas

Contenders

9-3, 20-5               (19) Texas

Pretenders

8-5, 19-7               Oklahoma

7-5, 19-5               (17) Iowa State

7-5, 17-8               Kansas State

7-6, 15-11            West Virginia

Everyone else

5-7, 13-12            Texas Tech

4-8, 16-9               Baylor

4-8, 16-9               Oklahoma State

0-12, 9-15            Texas Christian

When does "the stretch run" officially start?  I have no idea.  Eight Big 12 teams have six games left (two have five games left).  If this isn’t the stretch run, it’s awfully darn close.

Let’s dive in to the happenings on the court this past week.

(8) Kansas, 19-6, 10-2

Last week: loss @ Kansas State 85-82 (OT), win vs TCU 95-65

This week: @ Texas Tech 2/18, vs (19) Texas 2/22

Remaining games: vs OU, @ OSU, vs TTU, @ WVU

So much for the "matchup nightmare" versus Kansas State, that sure didn’t work out very well for KU.  What can you say, though, the Wildcats shot over 50% from three and KU shot under 20%.  The Jayhawks travel to face a suddenly tough Red Raiders squad before hosting Texas.  KU can’t afford any slipups this week; a 2-0 week would certainly make us all feel much better about securing conference title #10 (in a row).

(19) Texas, 20-5, 9-3

Last week: win vs Oklahoma State 87-68, win vs West Virginia 88-71

This week: @ (17) Iowa State 2/18, @ (8) Kansas 2/22

Remaining games: vs BU, @ OU, vs TCU, @ TTU

Texas had a good week, and with KU’s slip in Manhattan, is primed to make a run at the Jayhawks.  If Texas has a 2-0 week, they’ll be in perfect position to claim at least a share of the conference title (and would have two wins over Kansas to boot).  This week will be a test for the Longhorns.  Ames is not a friendly place for visitors, and KU will certainly have a measure of revenge on their minds when Saturday rolls around.  I’m definitely interested to see how the Longhorns handle the road after two comfortable wins at home last week.

Oklahoma, 19-7, 8-5

Last week: loss vs Texas Tech 68-60, win @ Oklahoma State 77-74

This week: vs Kansas State 2/22

Remaining games: @ KU, vs UT, vs WVU, @ TCU

Oklahoma tripped up at home vs the suddenly stingy Red Raiders, but then went on the road and took advantage of a Marcus Smart-less Cowboys squad and picked up a victory there.  OU is all but out of the running for a Big 12 title, but still has a shot at a top-4 finish and an NCAA tourney berth.

(17) Iowa State, 19-5, 7-5

Last week: loss @ West Virginia 102-77, win vs Texas Tech 70-64

This week: vs (19) Texas 2/18, @ TCU 2/22

Remaining games: vs WVU, @ KSU, @ BU, vs OSU

The Cyclones dropped… well… let’s say they dropped a rough one on the road at West Virginia this past week.  77 points isn’t shabby, but WVU won by 25, so… yeah, you do the math.  WVU scored A LOT of points on Iowa State.  Texas Tech did not, but it was a fairly close game throughout.  The Red Raiders have become a tough out this conference season.  ISU looks forward to hosting Texas before travelling to Fort Worth on a recruiting trip I mean a game against TCU.

Kansas State, 17-8, 7-5

Last week: win vs (8) Kansas 85-82 (OT), loss @ Baylor 87-73 (2OT)

This week: vs TCU 2/19, @ Oklahoma 2/22

Remaining games: @ TTU, vs ISU, @ OSU, vs BU

"If only" must be the motto of K-State basketball.  If only they had made a few more free throws and beat Baylor in regulation.  Ditto for the first overtime.  Then they might have a national ranking this week.  But alas… After back to back defeats of the Big 12s top two teams, K-State went on the road and lost to one of the Big 12s worst teams.  It’s really not all bad, though.  I mean, nine of the Big 12s ten teams are capable of beating anybody in the country.  (OK, maybe only eight, I’m not sold on Texas Tech yet.)  I’m sure that doesn’t make Wildcat fans feel any better.  That’s assuming that they even knew (or cared) that K-State was playing Baylor after the KU game.  Yeah, that’s right, I’m calling you out, Wildcat Nation, you and your one sellout a year.  (Note, I haven’t done any research to verify, I’m only assuming K-State has one sellout this year.  Therefore, I assume that fact I just made up to be 100% true.  It’s just how I roll.)

West Virginia, 15-11, 7-6

Last week: win vs (17) Iowa State 102-77, loss @ (19) Texas 88-71

This week: vs Baylor 2/22

Remaining games: @ ISU, vs TCU, @ OU, vs KU

The Mountaineers followed a "statement win" with a thud.  They smoked, absolutely torched Iowa State, then tried to take the show on the road and fizzled out.  I’m not really sure what to make of these ‘Eers anymore.  They have an interesting pair of games this week… my guess is another home win and another road loss – that seems to be the way the Big 12 is going this year.

Texas Tech, 13-12, 5-7

Last week: win @ Oklahoma 68-60, loss @ (17) Iowa State 70-64

This week: vs (8) Kansas 2/18, @ Oklahoma State 2/22

Remaining games: vs KSU, @ BU, @ KU, vs UT

Texas Tech continues to surprise.  They now have three wins against Big 12 teams not named TCU after last week’s upset of Oklahoma – in Norman.  It’s won’t be getting any easier this week for Tech as they host Kansas before travelling to Stillwater.  Texas Tech won’t be favored the rest of the year; it will be interesting to see how many more surprises they have in them.  They are definitely playing better ball, staying in games, and giving themselves chances to win.

Baylor, 16-9, 4-8

Last week: win @ TCU 91-58, win vs Kansas State 87-73 (2OT)

This week: vs Oklahoma State 2/17, @ West Virginia 2/22

Remaining games: @ UT, vs TTU, vs ISU, @ KSU

Baylor picked up two games this week.  I know, I know, amazing, right?  Well, not really.  One game was TCU on the road, and the other was K-State at home.  So…  yeah.  Not really much to say here.  The Bears still have a chance to salvage their season and make the tournament, but they better win four or even five of their last six if that’s what they want.

Oklahoma State, 16-9, 4-8

Last week: loss @ (19) Texas 87-68, loss vs Oklahoma 77-74

This week: @ Baylor 2/17, vs Texas Tech 2/22

Remaining games: @ TCU, vs KU, vs KSU, @ ISU

The Cowboys are in free-fall, dropping six in a row and 7 of 8.  They are 0-2 so far without Marcus Smart in a blowout loss to Texas and a narrow home loss to the rival Sooners.  They’ll get another shot at Baylor this week and then Marcus Smart will be back against the same team that he earned his suspension against.

Texas Christian, 9-15, 0-12

Last week: loss vs Baylor 91-58, loss @ (8) Kansas 95-65

This week: @ Kansas State 2/19, vs (17) Iowa State 2/22

Remaining games: vs OSU, @ WVU, @ UT, vs OU

TCU is gonna have a hard time winning games with teams scoring 90+ points on them.  The last three for the Horned Frogs haven’t even been very competitive, and the Horned Frogs haven’t been able to turn close games against West Virginia, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Texas into wins.  It’s looking like the wrong kind of a perfect season in Fort Worth.

Questions to consider:

On a scale of 1-10, how worried are you about the game in Lubbock?  (10 is extremely worried/think we’re going to lose.)

Who will finish ninth in the conference standings?

What percentage chance do you give Texas to win in Allen Fieldhouse next weekend?

How many more wins will Texas Tech pick up this season?

Is Oklahoma State on the bubble, or have they already fallen farther than that?

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