Welcome to the Frogs O' War Big 12 Power Rankings, your official place for Baylor Jokes that you can put on a sign and get on college gameday (I was seriously wowed by that, great image choice whomever that was).
It was an interesting week 1, as a few teams lived up to expectations, a few struggled more than expected, one struggled a lot more than expected and two certainly exceeded (my) expectations, so the movement is all over the place for a lot of teams. As always, these are not conference standings, these are just my feeling on how good a team currently is, based on momentum, injuries, coach's eating habits and other unarguably important factors. And we're even debuting a new special ranking this week, so let's jump straight into it and see who ended up where!
1.) TCU Horned Frogs (1-0), Previous ranking: #1
The Frogs hang onto the top spot despite some grumblings in Funkytown this week from fans who didn't get the offensive explosion they were hoping to see. The Power Rankings are less concerned by this- they love road wins and they love wins against P5 opponents, and the Frogs are the only team to tick both of those boxes after week 1. It also says here that the win over Minnesota will look much better by the time the season is over- but if we don't see some fireworks this week, it will be officially time to worry.
Next week: Vs. Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks
2.) West Virginia Mountaineers (1-0), Previous ranking: #6
Say hello to the first big jump of the season, as the Mountaineers rolled off a very impressive win over the defending Sun Belt champions- and shutting them out to boot. Last season the Mountaineers offense seemed lost at times without Kevin White doing great things, but this season not only is the offense clicking early, but it looks like the Mountaineers could be fielding a serious defense this year- this is a team that could be a contender (and if they want to knock off Baylor again I will laugh/love that).
Next week: Vs. Liberty Flames
3.) Oklahoma Sooners (1-0), Previous ranking: #2
The Sooners took a little while to get going against the Zips, and the running game looked surprisingly pedestrian at times, but new quarterback Baker Mayfield looked like a game changer- which is something that Oklahoma hasn't really had at QB since Sam Bradford (with Trevor Knight's Sugar Bowl romp over Bama excepted). To me though, Oklahoma will go as far as their defense carries them this year, as the traditionally stout Sooner defense has fallen on hard times the past few years, and reached its lowest point against Baylor last year. Next week the Sooners will have a chance to make a big move in the rankings, though, as they head to Knoxville to take on the mighty ESS-EEE-SEE in one of the countries largest stadiums.
Next week: @ Tennessee Volunteers
4.) Baylor Bears (1-0), Previous week: #10
Baylor did it's Baylor thing to SMU, 2014's worst team, but actually let the Mustangs hang around for quite a while before putting the game out of reach in the third quarter- This is a bit of a wait and see ranking, as Baylor looked vulnerable, but maybe SMU just got significantly better?
Next week: Vs. Lamar Cardinals
5.) Oklahoma State Cowboys (1-0), Previous week: #3
The Cowboys get a little dinged for letting a MAC team hang around with them all game (and trailing in the second half is ???), but in the end, a road win is a road win, and Michigan is pretty dang far. If OSU wants to climb in the rankings, they'd better show some sort of a running game against their FCS foe this week.
Next week: Vs. Central Arkansas
6.) Kansas State Wildcats (1-0), Previous week: # 5
South Dakota is one of the worst teams in FCS, but Kansas State did okay in blowing them out. Neutral response? Neutral response. Let's see something next week, shall we?
Next week: @ UTSA Roadrunners
7.) Iowa State Cyclones (1-0), Previous week: #8
Hooray ISU! Normally a pantsing of an FCS foe won't get you more than a pat on the head from the Power Rankings, but when you're Iowa State and the opponent is one that beat you two years ago, this had to feel pretty darn good. The Cyclones showed significant improvement on defense from last year and have all the momentum they could want heading into the annual Cy-Hawk showdown, where this year the winning coach probably keeps his job!
Next week: Vs. Iowa Hawkeyes
8.) Texas Tech Red Raiders (1-0), Previous week: #7
The Red Raiders get bumped down a notch despite a cruising victory over their FCS patsy, simply because Iowa State's win was bigger and better (Northern Iowa is a good FCS team) and Tech simply doesn't look like they've answered most of their offseason questions, other than "Who is going to be quarterback?" in a positive way. With yet another defensive coordinator taking over the reigns in Lubbock I was hoping for some clear signs that the Raiders were finally taking steps to shore up their run defense, but it just didn't happen in this one. A win against run loving UTEP will give the Raiders a decent bump, though.
Next week: Vs. UTEP Miners
9: Kansas Jayhawks (0-1), Previous week: #9
I'll say it- Kansas didn't look that bad. Yes, the Jayhawks lost to an FCS foe yet again, but they were in the game (which wasn't a given, given their depth chart) and their offense actually had a clear identity of what they were trying to do- which is a big step forward for the KU program. Still... they did lose to an FCS program, so there's lots of work to be done to get out of that #9 spot. I wonder who could've had a worse weekend than that?
Next week: Vs. Memphis Tigers
And now for number 10, which will henceforth be known as the Power Poll's "Baylor of the Week"- because Baylor is always at the bottom of the poll in our hearts.
10.) Texas Longhorns (0-1), Previous ranking: #4
Congratulations to the Longhorns for being our inaugural Baylor of the week! Wow, was I wrong about the Longhorns. It was easy to overlook just how much Texas was losing on defense from thinking about what a good defensive coach Charlie Strong is, and surely the offense had to improve after the humiliating performance against Arkansas in their bowl game, right? It did not. The Longhorns not only fell apart of defense, but also may have regressed even further on offense to a practically unwatchable degree- which led to the first Big 12 staff reshuffle of the year, as Texas will have a new playcaller for next week's game.
Next week: Vs. Rice Owls
Agree? Disagree? Want to put my jokes on a sign? Let me know in the comments!