We’re headed down the stretch of the season and football fans in Oklahoma have a lot to be excited about. OSU and OU are both in the thick of the College Football Playoff race and could have the Big 12 title on the line when they face off in two weeks.
Meanwhile, West Virginia is surging, Texas is floundering, and Texas Tech is bowl eligible. Here’s this week’s rankings; for last week’s, click here.
1. Oklahoma State (10-0, 7-0)
Call it ugly, call it lucky, call it sloppy – but don’t forget to call it a win. That’s all these guys have done this season, and they did it again in Ames on Saturday. In a classic trap game, OSU came from behind to survive another scare from a lesser opponent. The quarterback combo of Mason Rudolph and J.W. Walsh continues to shine for the Cowboys. Up next: a date with a suddenly-vulnerable Baylor squad.
2. Oklahoma (9-1, 6-1)
A week ago, OSU earned the most impressive win of the college football season by dismantling TCU at home. Oklahoma may have one-upped the Cowboys on Saturday in Waco. Baker Mayfield was awesome and so was the Sooners’ defense. OU’s win at Baylor puts the Sooners back in the playoff chase with just two games to play. Bedlam in two weeks could be for all the marbles, but first OU must take care of business against TCU.
3. Baylor (8-1, 5-1)
Unbeaten no more. The Bears couldn’t remain poised enough down the stretch to beat a highly-motivated Oklahoma squad on Saturday. This takes Baylor out of the playoff picture, but not out of the BCS race. Big one in Stillwater next Saturday.
4. TCU (9-1, 6-1)
The Frogs look like they’re on the brink of disaster. A blowout loss in Stillwater followed by a near-loss at home to lowly Kansas. TCU is banged up at key positions and now must travel to Norman perhaps with no Trevone Boykin. Forget a national title – even a BCS bid is looking unlikely at this point barring an upset.
5. West Virginia (5-4, 2-4)
Things are starting to settle down for the Mountaineers after those four straight losses. WVU crushed Texas on Saturday and have a favorable schedule down the stretch. Don’t rule out eight wins for Dana Holgorsen’s club.
6. Texas Tech (6-5, 2-5)
Tech is the Big 12’s fourth bowl-eligible team after a shootout win over Kansas State. The Red Raiders are off next week before a season finale against Texas.
7. Iowa State (3-7, 2-5)
Iowa State rises a spot this week for a valiant effort against Oklahoma State. The Cyclones play hard, tough football, don’t back down from a challenge, and darn-near derailed the Cowboys’ title hopes.
8. Texas (4-6, 3-4)
The Longhorns’ nightmare continued on Saturday in Morgantown. The Longhorns nearly got doubled up and will now have to beat Baylor just to go to a bowl game. Not likely.
9. Kansas State (3-6, 0-6)
No two ways about it; Kansas State is just bad. The Wildcats lost at Texas Tech and remain winless in the Big 12. Still, somehow, with ISU, KU and WVU still on the schedule, a bowl bid isn’t out of the question.
10. Kansas (0-forever)
The Jayhawks gave TCU all it wanted on Saturday and should be mighty proud of their effort. Unfortunately, it’s hard to be too excited about another loss. KU host Kansas State in a couple of weeks. Can the birds avoid a winless season?