Big 12 Power Rankings week 7: Defensive

Senior runningback DeMarcus Robinson attempts to evade Oklahoma linebacker Dominique Alexander as he gains a few yards during the first quarter of the No. 14-ranked Wildcats' 31-30 upset of the No. 11-ranked Sooners on Oct. 18, 2014, at Gaylord Family Memorial Stadium in Norman, Oklahoma. (File Photo by Parker Robb | The Collegian)

1. Emmanuel Ogbah, defensive end, Oklahoma State (1)

It’s hard to move him because he keeps having good games. The Cowboys are out to a 6-0 start and a big reason for that is Ogbah. No movement here this week.

2. Dominique Alexander, linebacker, Oklahoma (3)

Although the Sooners lost, it wasn’t because Alexander didn’t show up. He had eight tackles on Saturday against Texas, three of which were solo. He moves up one spot mainly because Mountaineer Karl Joseph is out for the season and was number two in the power rankings.

3. Eric Striker, linebacker, Oklahoma (6)

Striker struggled against Texas last Saturday with only four tackles, but I think he will get back on track this week against K-State. They will need him to play well if they’re going to escape Manhattan with a win.

4. Dale Pierson, defensive end, Iowa State (4)

Pierson had only one tackle this past week and is on my drop list with one more bad week. I think there is potential there, but he needs to play better to stay in the top five.

5. Dakota Allen, linebacker, Texas Tech (NR)

Allen is a freshman and is finally on my radar after leading the Big 12 in tackles per game with 9.7. He has double-digit tackles in all the games this year but two, so he is the real deal. Expect him to move up fast.

6. Andrew Billings, defensive tackle, Baylor (7)

Billings moves up one spot after two tackles against the Jayhawks, but the first team defense didn’t play that long. He is a great talent and will bounce back this week.

7. Shawn Oakman, defensive end, Baylor (5)

Oakman did not have his best game against Kansas on Saturday, but the good thing is they didn’t need him that bad. He moves down two spots this week and has dropped the last two weeks. He needs to step up next week to move up again.

8. Zack Sanchez, cornerback, Oklahoma (8)

Sanchez had five tackles at the Cotton Bowl against Texas and 13 tackles in his last two games. He had a relatively average performance so he stayed at eighth again this week.

9. Nick Kwiatkoski, linebacker, West Virginia (9)

Kwiatkoski had four tackles last Saturday against Oklahoma State and stays put at number nine for the second straight week. He will have his hands full against the Baylor offense on Saturday but I expect a good game from him.

10. Jordan Sterns, safety, Oklahoma State (10)

Sterns had a great game on Saturday with 10 tackles against the Mountaineers. If he has another game like that, he will be moving up a few spots in next week’s rankings.