Recently I was scouring the internet and came upon Big 12 football power rankings posted at fellow SB Nation website www.rockchalktalk.com. So I decided to go with this concept and do an offseason basketball power ranking for all the Big 12 teams.
Even though basketball season is still a little ways off, this can be a snapshot of where each team is as of the beginning of September. These rankings are subject to change before the season as some players still have not yet been cleared by the NCAA for certain schools.
For fun I added my Big 12 football power rankings at the end since I also can't wait until kickoff finally gets here.
- (1.) Kansas State Wildcats
Last Seasons Record: Overall 29-8 Conference 11-5 - Elite Eight
Key Losses: Denis Clemente, Dominique Sutton
KSU takes top spot with the return of All Big 12 guard Jacob Pullen and a team fresh with momentum from their deep NCAA Tourney run. Key question that will be learned early in the season is how well the team will handle the loss of Clemente. Also interesting will be to see how much of an impact Freddy Asprilla provides for Frank Martin's team down low.
- (2.) Kansas Jayhawks
Last Seasons Record: Overall 33-3 Conference 15-1 - 2nd Round NCAA Tourney
Key Losses: Sherron Collins, Cole Aldrich, Xavier Henry
While I think KU should probably be considered the favorite to win yet another Big 12 title, I currently have them #2 simply because of the question mark of Josh Selby. Without Selby, the Jayhawks don't have a proven stud in the backcourt and championships are won these days with great guard play. My guess is Selby gets eligible and KU is not only a Big 12 Title contender but a national title contender.
- (3.) Baylor Bears
Last Seasons Record: Overall 28-8 Conference 11-5 - Elite Eight
Key Losses: Tweety Carter, Ekpe Udoh, Josh Lomers
Another team coming off a deep NCAA Tournament run and with a Senior leader returning in Lacedarius Dunn. While the loss of Udoh would make one guess that Baylor might take a step back, they welcome in highly touted Perry Jones who should team with Quincy Acy to keep the Bears strong in the post.
- (4.) Texas Longhorns
Last Seasons Record: Overall 24-10 Conference 9-7 - 1st Round NCAA Tourney
Key Losses: Damion James, Dexter Pittman, Avery Bradley
Tough call here putting the Longhorns over Missouri especially coming on the heels of Varez Ward transferring out of the program. I have Texas this high as I find it hard to believe that Rick Barnes will have a team struggle as mightily this season as last. The Longhorns naturally are stacked with talent in players like Jordan Hamilton and incoming 5 star recruits Cory Joseph & Tristan Thompson.
- (5.) Missouri Tigers
Last Seasons Record: Overall 23-11 Conference 10-6 - 2nd Round NCAA Tourney
Key Losses: J.T. Tiller, Keith Ramsay, Zaire Taylor
If Tony Mitchell were to somehow gain his eligibility the Tigers stock would definitely go up but until then I have them slightly below Texas and two of their north rivals. While the addition of #1 JUCO recruit Ricardo Ratiliffe helps Justin Safford and Steve Moore down low, this team might need some time to gel when the season gets going. The Tigers will need Kim English to step up even more this season with "Mr. Big Shot" Zaire Taylor gone.
- (6.) Colorado Buffaloes
Last Seasons Record: Overall 15-16 Conference 6-10
Key Losses: Keegan Hornbuckle, Dwight Thorne
I have Colorado this high simply based on the fact that I think the subtraction of head coach Jeff Bzdelik actually improves the Buffaloes chances this season. Possible future NBA player Alec Burks leads the charge with running mate Cory Higgins providing a solid 1-2 combination for CU.
Last Seasons Record: Overall 24-10 Conference 4-12 - NIT
Key Losses: Darko Cohadardarevic, Nick Okorie
A team that will be senior laden with John Roberson & Mike Singletary back for another tour of duty in Lubbock. The Red Raiders played well at the tail end of last season as they hung tough with KU in the conference tournament before making a nice little run in the NIT. Interesting team to see how they progress this coming year.
- (8.) Oklahoma State Cowboys
Last Seasons Record: Overall 22-11 Conference 9-7 - 1st Round NCAA Tourney
Key Losses: James Anderson, Obi Muenelo
While a solid part of the rotation from last season returns in Keiton Page, Matt Pilgrim & Marshall Moses, the loss of James Anderson is a devastating blow for the Cowboys. I think early on the Cowboys may have trouble producing points and could find themselves looking for an identity.
- (9.) Texas A&M Aggies
Last Seasons Record: Overall 24-10 Conference 11-5 - 2nd round NCAA Tourney
Key Losses: Donald Sloan, Bryan Davis,
While I think Mark Turgeon is a potentially great coach in the conference, I think this season could be a rebuilding one in College Station. The Aggies will need returning players B.J. Holmes & David Loubeau to step up their respective games if they hope to make another return to the NCAA Tournament.
(10.) Nebraska Cornhuskers
Last Seasons Record: Overall 15-18 Conference 2-14
Key Losses: Ryan Anderson, Sek Henry
While I am not overly high on Doc Sadler's bunch in Lincoln, I think they should be improved and out of the Big 12 cellar this season. They do return some talent in players like C Jorge Brian Diaz and guards Lance Jeter & Brandon Richardson. This is a team that late in the season last year put a major scare into K-State in Manhattan and destroyed Missouri in the Big 12 tournament in Kansas City.
(11.) Oklahoma Sooners
Last Seasons Record: Overall 13-18 Conference 4-12
Key Losses: Willie Warren, Tiny Gallon, Tommy Mason-Griffin
Although the Sooners plan on being less talented and possibly taking their lumps this coming season, Jeff Capel should probably enjoy himself more than he did last year. Capel will lead a young team with Cade Davis as the only senior listed on the roster. Expect OU to use this season to build for the 2011-2012 season.
(12.) Iowa State Cyclones
Last Seasons Record: Overall 15-17 Conference 4-12
Key Losses: Craig Brackins, Marquis Gilstrap, Justin Hamilton
Unfortunately for Fred Hoiberg, he will have to suffer through a presumably miserable 2010-2011 season before he can put his bevy of transfers on the floor in 2011-2012. With recent additions of players like Royce White & Chris Allen the future is starting to get brighter in Ames.
My Big 12 Football Power Ranking
- (1.) Texas Longhorns - New QB but still Texas and loaded with playmakers
- (2.) Oklahoma Sooners - Should rebound from their "bad" season a year ago
- (3.) Nebraska Cornhuskers - Need to figure their QB situation out, D can carry them early on
- (4.) Missouri Tigers - Lots of distraction but still loads of talent especially Blaine Gabbert
- (5.) Texas A&M Aggies - Lots of talent can they finally win under Sherman
- (6.) Texas Tech Red Raiders - New coach, still should have good QB play
- (7.) Oklahoma State Cowboys - Faith that Mike Gundy has the talent to keep winning
- (8.) Kansas State Wildcats - This high because of Bill Snyder & Daniel Thomas
- (9.) Iowa State Cyclones - Return their QB & RB, I really like their coach also
- (10.) Colorado Buffaloes - Good talent, key question is can Hawkins save his job
- (11.) Baylor Bears - Return of Robert Griffin is a great start
- (12.) Kansas Jayhawks - Lost last 7 games in 09 & gone is Todd Reesing & crew
You can see rockchalktalk.com power rankings at web site: http://www.rockchalktalk.com/2010/8/30/1657869/big-12-preseason-power-rankings