1. Texas (2-0) (Last Week: 1) (Next: California)
After its impressive double overtime win over Notre Dame to start the season, Texas didn’t show any signs of a hangover in a 41-7 win over UTEP. Whereas most teams might struggle to play with the same intensity against a lesser opponent, the Longhorns throttled the inferior Miners. Freshman quarterback Shane Buechele threw for 244 yards and four touchdowns and will be the key to a road win for Texas.
2. Oklahoma (1-1) (Last Week: 2) (Next: Ohio State)
Oklahoma was angry after its season-opening loss to Houston. If the Sooners needed a punching bag to take their anger out on, they found it in the University of Louisiana at Monroe. Junior quarterback Baker Mayfield went for 244 yards and three touchdowns, while his understudy, freshman Austin Kendall, had 108 yards and two touchdowns. Oklahoma will need to be locked in this weekend against Ohio State, or their College Football Playoff hopes will likely be shattered.
3. Oklahoma State (1-1) (Last Week: 3) (Next: Pittsburgh)
Week 2 Big 12 power rankings
Oklahoma State won the game on Saturday. Well, the Cowboys didn’t win the game on the scoreboard, but they should have. They did everything that they had to do to win the game. Oklahoma State lost to Central Michigan 30-27 on a Hail Mary pass from Central Michigan. But the Chippewas shouldn’t have even had the opportunity. The winning pass came on a play that shouldn’t have been allowed, but the referees ruled that the game could not end on a penalty, thus allowing the Chippewas an extra play. The Cowboys don’t get punished in the rankings, because they should be 2-0 right now.
4. Baylor (2-0) (Last Week: 4) (Next: Rice)
A 40-13 win over SMU has never looked as deceiving as Baylor made it look Saturday. The Bears won by 27, but were tied with the Mustangs, 6-6, at the halftime break. Baylor’s senior quarterback Seth Russell impressed with 261 yards and two touchdowns, but the Bears will need to work out the kinks against Rice this weekend if they hope to contend for the Big 12 this season.
5. Kansas State (0-1) (Last Week: 6) (Next: Florida Atlantic)
Coming off a season-opening loss versus Stanford, the Wildcats had the week off. K-State’s defense impressed many in the opener, but the offense showed it has some work to do. The bye week certainly gave them time to work on that, as will this weekend against the Owls.
6. TCU (1-1) (Last Week: 8) (Next: Iowa State)
I kind of beat up on the TCU Horned Frogs in the rankings last week, but they had it coming after nearly losing to South Dakota State. The Horned Frogs suffered a loss to Arkansas, 41-38 in double overtime this weekend, but looked improved. Junior quarterback Kenny Hill accumulated three total touchdowns in the loss. TCU isn’t the team it’s been recently, but it could be a middle-of-the-pack team this year.
7. Texas Tech (1-1) (Last Week: 5) (Next: Louisiana Tech)
Big 12 preseason power rankings
One hundred twenty-three. That’s the total number of points between the two teams that were scored in the Red Raiders’ 68-55 loss to Arizona State this last weekend. Zero. That’s the rating that I would give Texas Tech’s defense. The Red Raiders gave up 68 points in a college football game. They showed that they can score by putting up 55 of their own, but they won’t win a lot of games in this league if they can’t trot a defense out there.
8. West Virginia (2-0) (Last Week: 7) (Next: BYU)
Senior quarterback Skyler Howard played really well in the Mountaineers’ 38-21 win. He threw for 389 yards and five touchdowns. But West Virginia’s opponent was Youngstown State. So in review, West Virginia has played a dumpster fire in Missouri and an inferior FCS team. West Virginia has not been impressive so far and could struggle when facing the Big 12 top dogs this year.
9. Kansas (1-1) (Last Week: 9) (Next: Memphis)
Kansas played so well in its opener against Rhode Island and gave so many fans hope for a good season. But maybe that just showed how bad Rhode Island was. The Jayhawks fell to Ohio this weekend, 37-21. Junior quarterback Montell Cozart had a solid game with 198 yards and two passing touchdowns but Kansas struggled nearly everywhere else. The chances to win games this year are quickly vanishing for the Jayhawks.
10. Iowa State (0-2) (Last Week: 10) (Next: TCU)
Since 2010, Iowa State versus Iowa has had just one blowout win for Iowa. In fact, Iowa State has won three Cy-Hawk trophies since 2010. It’s what rivalry games tend to be like. But on Saturday, Iowa mopped the floor with the Cyclones, 42-3. It was really ugly. Iowa State is bad and shows no signs of improvement. It could be a long season in Ames, Iowa.