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Big 12 Power Rankings: Week 1

The Longhorns impressed, but did they claim the top spot?

Kansas v Iowa State Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images

OK, so that didn’t go quite as planned last week.

Or did it?

Either way, the Big 12 had a stellar last week, sans West Virginia, which was the only school to lose its opener. But let’s not kid ourselves ... all eyes will be watching what unfolds in Ames this week in a top-10 battle between two powerful program.

On to the show!

10. Kansas (1-0)

Kansas wins! Kansas wins! Pay no attention to the fact that it was against an FCS team that finished sixth in The Valley in 2019, and eighth last year. It won!

This week should be a hoot.

This week: at #17 Coastal Carolina (1-0)

9. West Virginia (0-1)

Tough loss last week to Maryland, in a game that may signify a tough season ahead in Morgantown. I’m not ready to write off the ‘Eers just yet, but there’s work to be done. Fortunately, Long Island University awaits, so the odds are the team finds its way back to .500 this weekend.

This week: vs. Long Island University (0-1)

8. Baylor (1-0)

A 29-20 win over Texas State last week was anything but pretty, though the rushing game was impressive. Trestan Ebner rushed 20 times for 120 yards, while Abram Smith chipped in 118 yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries.

This week: vs. Texas Southern (0-1)

7. Texas Tech (1-0)

Tech playing defense? There’s a phrase we haven’t used much. Still, the Red Raiders outscored Houston 31-0 in the second half of last week’s opener, an impressive display to start the season out with a win.

This week: vs. Stephen F. Austin (1-0)

6. TCU (1-0)

A nice 45-3 opening-weekend win over Duquesne is a great way to start the season, but it might as well have been Bishop Sycamore out there, considering the teams played a shortened second half because of how lopsided the competition was. Cal presents a much more reliable litmus test for the Horned Frogs this week.

This week: at Cal (1-0)

5. Oklahoma State (1-0)

The Cowboys were yet another team that struggled against an FCS opponent, eeking out a 23-16 win over Missouri State. QB Spencer Sanders was unavailable due to COVID protocols, though backup Shane Illingworth was 22-40 for 315 yards and one touchdown, filling in admirably in Sanders’ absence. The running game, though, is cause for concern early on.

This week: vs. Tulsa (0-1)

4. Kansas State (1-0)

The Wildcats won 24-7 over Stanford last week, with healthy QB Skylar Thompson leading the way, going 9-14 for 144 yards, while rushing 10 times for 33 yards and two touchdowns. They should be able to handle Southern Illinois this week, a team coach Chris Klieman is very familiar with.

This week: vs. Southern Illinois (1-0)

This week: at Arkansas (1-0)

3. #9 Iowa State (1-0)

Seriously, can the Cyclones ever have a week one matchup that doesn’t result in heart palpitations? Sure, they were without Charlie Kolar, but the team’s inability to establish any sort of meaningful offensive rhythm can definitely make fans a little uneasy. The defense, on the other hand, was as good as advertised, and having seen this team perform in years past, it’s reasonable to think the offense is one monster play away from opening the floodgates.

This week: vs. #10 Iowa (1-0)

2. #4 Oklahoma (1-0)

The mighty, mighty Tulane Green Wave gave Oklahoma all it could handle last week, but considering how nearly every other team struggled to their wins as well, a win is a win. Most concerning is how the Sooners were unable to close the game out, getting outscored 13-0 in the fourth quarter of their 40-35 win.

This week: vs. Western Carolina (0-1)

1. #15 Texas (1-0)

Texas rolled No. 23 Louisiana 38-18 last week, an impressive start to the Steve Sarkisian era. The Longhorns were led by running back Bijan Robinson, who accumulated 103 yards and one touchdown on 20 carries. RB Hudson Card had one of the most interesting lines last week: Six carries for one touchdown and -1 yards. Simply put, Texas earned this spot with the conference’s only win over a ranked opponent last week.

Current Mood Heading into Week 2: