Baylor Football

Baylor and Texas switch places in latest Big 12 Power Rankings

October 14, 2021

The Big 12 saw plenty of fireworks and notable results in last weekend's three-game slate despite some open dates. The storylines and importance ramp up further on Saturday with four conference games, plus a marquee non-con showdown in Waco. So, as we head into week seven, here are my updated Big 12 power rankings. 

1. OKLAHOMA — W 55-48 vs. #21 Texas

 It doesn't get much better than the dramatics of OU's comeback win over rival Texas. But, there are more games to be played. Caleb Williams appears to be the Sooners' new QB1, so the dynamic with Spencer Rattler now becomes a marquee storyline to their season. It's already indirectly led to a public spat between the university and student newspaper, which turned into an outright media ban and plenty of negative national coverage. So, the starting quarterback secret appears out, but Is Williams, the guy who unlocks OU's full potential? 

Up Next: Home vs. TCU, 6:30 pm 


 The undefeated Cowboys were able to enjoy an open week following their home victory over Baylor. Now rested, the Pokes hit the road as underdogs against Texas. Jim Knowles' defense vs. Steve Sarkisian's offense is the big matchup. Defensive end Brock Martin possibly returning from injury would be welcome news. Offensively, they need Spencer Sanders to make intelligent decisions and protect the football.

Up Next: @ #25 Texas, 11:00 am 

3. BAYLOR — W 45-20 vs. West Virginia

Baylor passed their bounce-back test with flying colors. Now, an intriguing matchup stylistically as the Top 25 Cougars roll into Waco. The coaching chess match will be a must-watch, given the amount of familiarity on both sidelines. A prime opportunity for the Bears to earn a Top 25 win at home and enter the open week a decisive 6-1. 

Up Next: Home vs. BYU, 2:30 pm 

4. TEXAS — L 55-48 vs. #6 Oklahoma

Texas went from the penthouse to the outhouse in last Saturday's brutal loss to rival OU. UT is now also without WR Jordan Whittington and DE Jacoby Jones due to injuries, which is significant. The Longhorns have also shuffled their offensive line. It's an excellent opportunity to get back on track, and I like their chances against the Cowboys' defense if Casey Thompson is connecting with receivers as he did in the Red River Showdown. Bijan Robinson is the real deal, to state the obvious. 

Up Next: Home vs. #12 Oklahoma State, 11:00 am 


 After demolishing Kansas, as one does, the Cyclones had an opportunity to lick their wounds and take a breather last week with an open date. At just 1-1 in conference play, there's plenty of opportunities to go on a second-half run. That should be their expectation at least, but to chart that course, they'll need to earn their first win in Manhattan since 2004. 

Up Next: @ Kansas State, 6:30 pm 

6. TCU — W 52-31 @ Texas Tech

TCU took out frustrations from consecutive losses by running for a whopping 394 yards en route to embarrassing Texas Tech on their Homecoming. Lincoln Riley won't name a starting quarterback, and in return, Gary Patterson mentioned several Frogs are questionable, including QB Max Duggan and star RB Zach Evans. Mind games aside, they'll need Duggan to have a good day through the air. Also, how does the defense fare against what will likely be Caleb Williams at QB1 for the Sooners? 

Up Next: @ #4 Oklahoma, 6:30 pm 


The Wildcats got veteran quarterback Skyler Thompson back in the fold from injury, lost to OU in a nail-biter, and now return to action after an open date. Thompson is the key to the whole KSU machine, and the extra time off should be beneficial in advance of welcoming in Iowa State. K-State has dominated "Farmageddon" at home. An 0-3 start to Big 12 play would be hard to overcome.

Up Next: Home vs. Iowa State, 6:30 pm 

8. TEXAS TECH — L 52-31 vs. TCU

So, that tiny bit of enthusiasm and hope in Lubbock following the Red Raiders' win over West Virginia lasted all of one week, thanks to TCU and an overall ugly showing on Homecoming. I don't think Tech is a good team, but shoot, take what you can get, and if an average team ends up lucking into 7 or 8 wins and a bowl appearance, that's significant. Especially for a coach on the hot seat. Instead, they looked terrible against the Frogs. Win #5 is practically a guarantee this weekend against Kansas, but they won't be favored in any of their final five games. 

Up Next: @ Kansas, 3:00 pm 

  9. WEST VIRGINIA — L 45-20 @ Baylor

Last week, the game changed for the Mountaineers in their blowout loss to Baylor. At then 2-3, Neal Brown could point to close losses as hope for a turnaround in results. But then they came to Waco. Even the proud defense was put on its heels two plays in and never really recovered. In addition, with the heat turning up, four players have entered the transfer portal in the last two weeks. Neal Brown needs this break, and they need a lot of improvement. 

Up Next: OPEN


Everyone knows the deal here. But, I'd imagine, the time from the open week was highly beneficial to a staff still playing catch up and a team who's taken some licks. The goal is to keep showing improvement at home against a reeling Texas Tech squad. 

Up Next: Home vs. Texas Tech, 3:00 pm 

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