Welcome back to the Frogs O' War Big 12 Power Rankings, where we let you know just where the power in the conference is residing from week to week. The conference as a whole went a very respectable 8-2 on the weekend, with one team in particular notching a marquee out of conference win that changes the order just a tad. Let's jump right into it!
1.) TCU Horned Frogs (2-0), Previous ranking: #1
The Frogs hang on to the top spot for the simple fact that, despite their close escape from Minnesota, the game never felt as though it was in doubt, and this week's offering featured the sight that we've all been holding out for- the offense exploded all over Stephen F. Austin, while the defense continued to rack up much needed snaps. Boykin looked composed and focused on Saturday, which will be key if the Frogs want to keep the top spot this season.
Next week: Vs. SMU Mustangs
2.) Oklahoma Sooners (2-0), Previous ranking: #3
I'll admit I was writing an epitaph for Oklahoma in the first half, but in the second half the defense adjusted in a big way and showed the heart and pride that was missing in hard spots last year as they rallied back from a double digit deficit to force overtime and then grab a win in what is, without hyperbole, one of college football's most imposing road stadiums. If OU can continue to clear the mental hurdle (and get the run game going) they may be right back to being the Oklahoma that everyone in the Big 12 loathes.
Next week: Vs. Tulsa Golden Hurricane
3.) West Virginia Mountaineers (2-0), Previous ranking: #2
The Mountaineers played an FCS team and put up an impressive performance, salting the game away before they even let Liberty on the board in the second half. It wasn't as good as last week's game, and it wasn't anything that could compare to OU's triumph, but it was good enough where it's safe to continue to expect big things from WVU this year.
Next week: Vs. Maryland Terrapins
4.) Kansas State Wildcats (2-0), Previous ranking: #6
The Wildcats defense looked impressive again, holding UTSA to less that 250 yards of total offense and keeping them out of the end zone in their own home, which results in a nice little jump for the other purple team this week. The offense still has a ways to go if the Cats are going to be a Big 12 contender this year, but so far the defense looks nasty enough to hold its own against anything the Big 12 throws at them- Bill Snyder has done it again.
Next week: Vs. Louisiana Tech Bulldogs.
5.) Baylor Bears (2-0), Previous ranking: #4
This was not a particularly strong outing for our friends in Waco, as new quarterback Seth Russel put together a fairly rough outing in throwing three interceptions in limited duty, and the Baylor defense gave up 33 points to an FCS level opponent- not exactly the start that gets you moving up. Still, they looked better than OSU, so Baylor remains in the top 5 this week.
Next week: Vs. Rice Owls
6.) Oklahoma State Cowboys (2-0), Previous ranking: #5
Against a bad FCS team the Cowboys had trouble getting the ground game going again, which is growing to be more and more of a concern as the season goes on- If you can't run against Central Arkansas, who are you going to be pounding it on the ground against come Big 12 season? The passing game is good, but the Cowboys can't be one dimensional if they're expecting a return to contender status.
Next week: Vs. UTSA Roadrunners
7.) Texas Tech Red Raiders (2-0), Previous ranking: #8
The big plays continue to be there for the Raiders, but against a pretty substandard UTEP team the Raider defense gave up almost 5 YPC- which bodes incredibly ill heading into next week's game at Arkansas, not to mention Big 12 play. Tech will score enough to pick up an upset this year, but it's hard to see that defense putting away lesser teams as well- I see a stressful year for Tech fans yet again.
Next week: @ Arkansas Razorbacks.
8.) Iowa State Cyclones (1-1), Previous ranking: #7
The Cyclones defense held firm throughout the game until bad turnovers on offense set the game out of reach- but it's a small silver lining to the cloud that the Cyclones need every win they're going to get this year, and a win over Iowa was a big one for Paul Rhoads' continued employment. Without a win over Kansas and at least 1 more upset this year, I think that ISU will make a change, but they definitely need 4 wins or better to even have that conversation, and that has to start this week.
Next week: @ Toledo Rockets.
9.) Texas Longhorns (1-1), Previous ranking: #10
So last week was probably a bit of an aberration, as Texas looked competent without Tyrone Swoopes stalling out drives and the ground game was able to simply pound the Owls into submission. That's the good news- the bad news is that with a tough non-conference schedule, it's still going to be a bit of an uphill battle for the Longhorns to make a bowl without some serious defensive improvement. At least they're getting an Athletic Director that won't actively alienate the fanbase?
Next week: Vs. Cal Bears
Frogs O' War's Baylor of the week- 10.) Kansas Jayhawks (0-2), Previous ranking: #9
When it was 10-0, one couldn't help but get their hopes up just a little bit that KU was going to turn the corner and collect a very impressive upset... and then the rest of the game happened, and it was made painfully clear just how far Kansas has to go before they're going to be able to compete with any teams on their schedule. The depth chart is still ravaged and, though the offense has improved, their defense will get absolutely torn to shreds if they're forced to be out there for extended periods. It's going to be a long year for Jayhawk fans again, which means it would be a surprise to see another team take their place as Baylor of the week for the foreseeable future.
Agree? Disagree? Think Hawk is funnier when he's not sleep deprived? Let me know in the comments.