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Big 12 Basketball Power Rankings - Feb. 22, 2016

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It was another exciting week in Big 12 hoops, but the top of the rankings looks the same once again.

Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports

1) Kansas (23-4 overall, 11-3 conference)
Last week: 1 (NC)
Kenpom: #4
Last game: at Kansas State (W 72-63)
Next game: at Baylor (2/23)

The wins keep on coming for the Kansas Jayhawks, as Bill Self's crew has now won seven consecutive games. Now holding a two-game lead in the Big 12 (thanks to West Virginia losing to Oklahoma), KU is primed to win their 12th straight conference title. Kansas was able to win in Manhattan on Saturday despite losing Landen Lucas, Jamari Traylor and Perry Ellis late in the game (the first two fouled out, the latter was battered and bloodied). Next up, Kansas travels to Waco to face the Baylor Bears, a team they beat by 28 at home on Jan. 2.

2) Oklahoma (21-5 overall, 9-5 conference)
Last week: 2 (NC)
Kenpom: #5
Last game: at West Virginia (W 76-62)
Next game: vs. Oklahoma State (2/24)

Despite being 2-3 in their last five games, OU pulled off a huge win versus Press Virginia in Morgantown this past Saturday, bouncing back from an upset loss to Texas Tech earlier in the week. Buddy Hield alone outscored the WVU starting lineup 29-23, and despite fatigue was a huge key for the Sooners down the stretch. If Oklahoma continues to play the rest of their season like they did on Saturday, they can go toe-to-toe with pretty much anyone.

3) Baylor (20-7 overall, 9-5 conference)
Last week: 5 (+2)
Kenpom: #25
Last game: at Texas (W 78-64)
Next game: vs. Kansas (2/23)

Tied in second in the conference, Baylor is starting to make some noise down the stretch. Thanks in large part to a dominant performance from Johnathan Motley, the Bears took care of Texas in Austin on Saturday. In their game prior to that, Baylor knocked off Iowa State at home. Two games back of Kansas, Baylor could make some major noise as the conference season winds down if they can pull off a home victory versus the Jayhawks this Tuesday.

4) Iowa State (19-8 overall, 8-6 conference)
Last week: 4 (NC)
Kenpom: #17
Last game: vs. TCU (W 92-83)
Next game: at West Virginia (2/22)

After losing to Baylor in overtime early last week, Iowa State bounced back with a win at Hilton Coliseum over TCU on Saturday. The Cyclones are three games back in the Big 12, making their hopes of a conference title minuscule at best, but they could still have a drastic effect on the final conference standings with just a few games to go; two of their final four games are at West Virginia and at conference-leading Kansas.

5) West Virginia (20-7 overall, 9-5 conference)
Last week: 3 (-2)
Kenpom: #12
Last game: vs. Oklahoma (L 62-76)
Next game: vs. Iowa State (2/22)

West Virginia, who has been solidly in third in the power rankings for much of the conference season, has now dropped three of its last four games. The Mountaineers followed a road loss at Texas with a disappointing home loss to Oklahoma last week. After shooting just 21-of-63 from the floor and getting out-rebounded 46-33 against OU, WVU will need to perform at a much higher level in their next game if they want to keep their Big 12 title hopes alive.

6) Texas Tech (17-9 overall, 7-7 conference)
Last week: 7 (+1)
Kenpom: #33
Last game: at Oklahoma State (W 71-61)
Next game: vs. TCU (2/23)

The Red Raiders continue their hot streak, as they have now won four games in a row, including victories over three ranked teams in that stretch (their last win, coming over Oklahoma State, was not one of those ranked-team victories). Texas Tech continues the last easy stretch of its schedule this Tuesday when it host TCU, before facing the daunting task of going on the road to face West Virginia and Kansas in back-to-back games.

7) Texas (17-10 overall, 8-6 conference)
Last week: 6 (-1)
Kempon: #28
Last game: vs. Baylor (L 64-78)
Next game: at Kansas State (2/22)

Losers of three of their last four games, the Longhorns picked up a win last Tuesday over West Virginia before losing to Baylor at home. Shaka Smart's team is certainly dangerous, but they have failed to put it all together for a great deal of this season, going on solid winning streaks and then suddenly playing poorly and losing several times in a stretch of games. Texas will host Oklahoma and Kansas, sandwiched by trips to Manhattan and Stillwater, in its final four games.

8) Kansas State (15-12 overall, 4-10 conference)
Last week: 8 (NC)
Kenpom: #45
Last game: vs. Kansas (L 63-72)
Next game: vs. Texas (2/22)

The Wildcats put up a fight on Saturday against in-state rival Kansas, but even with all of their expletive-laden chants and trips halfway on to the court by Bruce Weber they were not able to topple the Jayhawks at home for the third-straight year. K-State has another set of challenging contests coming up in the next week, as they'll host Texas before traveling to Ames to face Iowa State this coming Saturday.

9) Oklahoma State (12-15 overall, 3-11 conference)
Last week: 9 (NC)
Kenpom: #80
Last game: vs. Texas Tech (L 61-71)
Next game: at Oklahoma (2/24)

The hits keep coming for the Cowboys, as they've now lost five of their last six games. OSU has kept games close for the most part during this current stretch (aside from suffering a 27-point trouncing versus Kansas early last week) but they have not been able to pull out any wins, except for an ugly, low scoring overtime win over K-State on Feb. 13. It's not going to get any easier this week for the Pokes, as their next game is on the road versus Oklahoma.

10) TCU (11-16 overall, 2-12 conference)
Last week: 10 (NC)
Kenpom: #143
Last game: at Iowa State (L 83-92)
Next game: at Texas Tech (2/23)

Instead of focusing on TCU's immense struggles and futility this week, let's try to a find a positive for the Horned Frogs.

...

TCU is not the worst Power 5 conference team in the Kenpom rankings currently; they rank ahead of Minnesota, Missouri and Rutgers. It's something, right?

Questions, comments, concerns, opinions? Let me know in the comments or shoot me a tweet, I'm listening.