Big 12 power rankings: Week 4

Thousands of orange-clad Oklahoma State fans fill Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater, Oklahoma, to watch the Cowboys take on the Kansas State Wildcats Oct. 3, 2015. (File Photo by Parker Robb | The Collegian)

1. Oklahoma State (2-1) (Last Week: 3) (Next: Baylor)

After being unfairly robbed of a win over Central Michigan in week two, the Cowboys came back with a chip on their shoulders. Oklahoma State defeated a very impressive Pittsburgh team 45-38. Junior quarterback Mason Rudolph showed out, throwing for 540 yards and two touchdowns. The Cowboys will get their chance to prove if they can contend in this conference when they travel to Baylor this weekend.

2. Texas (2-1) (Last Week: 1) (Next: BYE)

Texas is a good football team. Such was proven in its first two wins this season. But everyone just pump the brakes a little bit. In the Longhorns’ 50-43 loss to California late Saturday night, they showed some glimpses of the Texas we know best. The Longhorns will look to fix things, specifically their defense that allowed Davis Webb to throw for 396 yards and four touchdowns, in their bye week this weekend.

3. Oklahoma (1-2) (Last Week: 2) (Next: BYE)

The Sooners deserve a little bit of a pass, because they might have the toughest nonconference schedule in the entire country. But the difficulty of the schedule only goes so far. Facts are facts, and Oklahoma is 1-2 after the 45-24 beatdown it took from the Ohio State Buckeyes. Junior quarterback Baker Mayfield threw two interceptions, and the Sooners’ running game never found the end zone. There are problems that head coach Bob Stoops will need to address during this bye week.

4. Baylor (3-0) (Last Week: 4) (Next: Oklahoma State)

It took the Bears a while to get going, as they were scoreless with Rice after the first quarter. But a 21-10 second quarter gave them just the boost they needed to end with a 38-10 win. Senior quarterback Seth Russell was impressive, throwing for 337 yards and three touchdowns. But this weekend will be the first time we can really judge the Baylor Bears, as they get their first true test of the season against Oklahoma State.

5. Kansas State (1-1) (Last Week: 5) (Next: Missouri State)

Kansas State needed to assert its dominance over an inferior opponent in the home opener. The Wildcats did just that, defeating Florida Atlantic 63-7. Sophomore fullback Winston Dimel popped off the stat sheet with four rushing touchdowns on five carries. It wasn’t a tough challenge, but the Wildcats needed a confidence boost, and behind an offensive explosion and a defensive spectacle, they did just that.

6. TCU (2-1) (Last Week: 6) (Next: SMU)

TCU partook in the first action of Big 12 football of 2016. It was a 41-20 win over the lowly Iowa State Cyclones. In the win, the Horned Frogs found success on the ground as four different players scored touchdowns on runs. TCU is clearly not the team they have been as of recently, but has the potential to sneak into the Big 12 Championship race this year.

7. Texas Tech (2-1) (Last Week: 7) (Next: Kansas)

Behind the big arm of junior quarterback Patrick Mahomes II, Texas Tech survived a scare from Louisiana Tech, 59-45. Mahomes II was 26-for-36, throwing the ball for 470 yards and five touchdowns. Sophomore running back Demarcus Felton also found success on the ground with 123 yards and two scores. All that is nice, but until the Red Raiders prove they can stop even a junior high offense, they will stay at the bottom of the conference.

8. West Virginia (2-0) (Last Week: 8) (Next: BYU)

The Mountaineers were on bye this last week, so we haven’t seen them play since their win over Youngstown State. West Virginia hasn’t been perfect in its two games this season, so BYU will be a big game for them to make their final tune up before Big 12 play.

9. Kansas (1-2) (Last Week: 9) (Next: BYE)

I thought Kansas would be much better than last year; I really did. But it appears that I could not have been more wrong. The Jayhawks suffered a 43-7 drubbing at the hands of Memphis on Saturday. In its last two games, KU has shown that it isn’t much better this year than last year. And now with Big 12 play next on their plate, the Jayhawks have an even tougher time getting more wins.

10. Iowa State (0-3) (Last Week: 10) (Next: San Jose State)

Iowa State continues to prove each week that they are a dumpster fire. It looked like the Cyclones might hang around with TCU, as they were trailing just 10-0 after the first quarter. But the Horned Frogs pulled away for the 41-20 win. Sophomore running back Mike Warren, who was expected to make a huge offensive impact, still has no touchdowns this season. It’s a bad time in Ames, Iowa, and it isn’t getting better any time soon.