Big 12 men’s basketball power rankings: Iowa State grabs top spot in the conference


With Oklahoma State falling narrowly in an extremely fun opening day in the Big 12, Iowa State has finally reached the top of the Big 12 mountain.

Dec 25, 2013; Honolulu, HI, USA; The Iowa State Cyclones bench and their fans celebrate in the second half against the Boise State Broncos in the 2013 Diamond Head Classic at the Stan Sheriff Center. Mandatory Credit: Marco Garcia-USA TODAY Sports

Here are the power rankings for the week of January 7th:

  1. Iowa State Cyclones (13-0, 1-0)
  2. Oklahoma State Cowboys (12-2, 0-1)
  3. Baylor Bears (12-1)
  4. Kansas State Wildcats (11-3, 1-0)
  5. Kansas Jayhawks (9-4)
  6. Oklahoma Sooners (12-2, 1-0)
  7. Texas Longhorns (11-3, 0-1)
  8. West Virginia Mountaineers (10-5, 2-0)
  9. Texas Tech Red Raiders (8-7, 0-2)
  10. TCU Horned Frogs (9-4, 0-1)

It’s hard to punish the Cowboys, especially after losing both Stevie Clark to marijuana and Michael Cobbins to an injury. There’s no shame in losing on the road to Kansas State, who have been the second-hottest team in the Big 12 with nine straight victories. The Wildcats picked up a lot of positive steam since their showing in Puerto Rico.

However, we can’t discount what the Cyclones have done. Rattling off 13 wins to start the season is no joke considering just a handful of teams have done it. The accomplishment has also been done against a pretty tough schedule. What have the other undefeated teams done compared to Iowa State’s victories over Michigan, BYU, Northern Iowa, Iowa, and Boise State?

Sure, the love for Iowa State could fade as soon as tonight against Baylor. But for right now, no one can dispute the Cyclones’ return to the top.

  • Baylor remains at third because, despite going 2-1 against Syracuse (lost), Colorado (win), and Kentucky (win), the other 10 wins are against suspect opponents. Especially the last four wins (Northwestern State, Southern, Oral Roberts, and Savannah State).
  • People are probably upset that Kansas is still getting love in the top 25 with four losses. The problem for the haters is that Kansas still has no bad losses; every team the Jayhawks have lost to are all currently ranked in the Associated Press Poll and they have obviously have the toughest schedule in the country. One could easily argue they still belong above Kansas State in the power rankings.
  • Congrats to West Virginia with their 2-0 start in the Big 12. Now let’s see if they can take that momentum to the next level.
  • Until TCU does something magical this year (or beat Texas Tech), they’ll continue to sit at the very bottom despite the Red Raiders’ worse overall record.