Big 12 men’s basketball power rankings: Are the Baylor Bears finally back?


It got incredibly dreary for Baylor in the start of February, not being able to connect wins after a big victory in Stillwater over Oklahoma State. Once ranked right next to TCU in the power rankings, the Bears have climbed to the top half of the league.

Feb 17, 2014; Waco, TX, USA; Baylor Bears guard Brady Heslip (5) battles for the ball with Oklahoma State Cowboys forward/center Kamari Murphy (21) during the second half at the Ferrell Center. The Bears won 70-64 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Here are this week’s Big 12 power rankings for the week of February 24th.

  1. Kansas Jayhawks (21-6, 12-2)
  2. Iowa State Cyclones (21-5, 9-5)
  3. Texas Longhorns (20-7, 9-5)
  4. Oklahoma Sooners (20-7, 9-5)
  5. Baylor Bears (18-9, 6-8)
  6. West Virginia Mountaineers (15-12, 7-7)
  7. Oklahoma State Cowboys (17-10, 5-9)
  8. Kansas State Wildcats (18-9, 8-6)
  9. Texas Tech Red Raiders (13-14, 5-9)
  10. TCU Horned Frogs (9-17, 0-14)

After losing by double digits to Kansas and Oklahoma, Baylor has since won four straight games. One was the big blowout against TCU, one matchup that the Horned Frogs just can’t measure up to this season, and then there were overtime victories over Kansas State and Oklahoma State.

While not as big of a surprise as sweeping the Cowboys, eventually winning in Morgantown over West Virginia by 13 points was. I practically wrote the team off at the end of January losing two straight home games. However, unlike last season, it looks like Baylor is going to finish the season strong.

Of course they would, with Iowa State still having to play in Waco in the second-to-last game of the regular season.

  • Speaking of the Cyclones, they take second place in the Big 12 after the Texas Longhorns tumble to third. Iowa State is currently riding a three-game winning streak and a three-way tie for second place with Oklahoma and Texas. Despite ISU playing ugly at times, like what went down against TCU on Saturday, they’re still able to close out games. That’s how you win in the NCAA tournament; especially important for a team that relies on shooting as much as the Cyclones do.
  • Yes, Texas got rocked in their two-game road trip, but those were two road games against the top part of the conference. That doesn’t take a way from what they’ve accomplished this season, and they’ll still be a hard out in the NCAA tournament.
  • Was it smoke and mirrors for West Virginia? Not at all, they’re much better than their overall 15-12 record indicates with a tough non-conference slate, but they’ll have to respond in Ames or suffer a third straight loss and be forced to make quite a run in the Big 12 tournament to get into the NCAA tournament.