Big 12 Football: Week 6 Power Rankings

Mike WehlingAnalyst IOctober 12, 2010

Big 12 Football: Week 6 Power Rankings

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    Well that was a fun week in football. Nebraska cruised to a victory against Kansas State, Baylor let a victory over Texas Tech slip through their fingers, A&M almost got the upset against Arkansas, Oklahoma State struggled out of the gate before beating Louisiana Lafayette, Missouri dominated Colorado, and Iowa State got crushed by Utah. With that quick recap, where do the Big 12 teams stand after Week 6?

12. Kansas Jayhawks

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    Record: 2-3 (0-1)

    Big 12 North Ranking: Tied for 6th

    National Record: N/A

    Good news for the Jayhawks, they did not lose last weekend.  Bad news, they are still at the bottom of the Big 12. Hopefully Turner Gill was watching Nebraska's defense last weekend and came up with a way to stop Daniel Thomas. Kansas currently has not shown they can stop any offense. The Kansas offense has also looked pretty bad. Jordan Webb needs to become a game-changer if the Jayhawks want to salvage something out of this season. He better become one soon, because it will take the entire Kansas team playing their best game to pull off the upset against their instate rival.

    Kansas Player of the Week: Turner Gill. He's obviously not a player, but go read the story about him and Trevor Roberts—this is something you would never see if Mangino was still in charge

    Week 7: Kansas State Thursday

    Prediction: Loss. Kansas simply does not have the talent on either side of the ball to beat the Wildcats.

11. Colorado Buffaloes

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    Record: 3-2 (0-1)

    Big 12 North Ranking: Tied for 6th

    National Ranking: N/A

    Yeah, I don't care who you are, getting shutout is never good. Colorado had chances to score but blew them. It got so bad that Cody Hawkins came into the game. I really hope he does not start against Baylor. The team also had a safety, on what I thought was a terrible intentional grounding call, but it's okay, Colorado, the worst safety goes to Garcia of South Carolina. Hawkins should not abandon Hansen in favor of his son, as Hansen had led the team to a 3-1 record before the Missouri game, and Colorado still has some winnable games. The next two are at home, and with Folsom Field's advantage, they might win them.

    Colorado Player of the Week: Scotty McKnight. He had 72 yards on five catches and is making his all-time receptions mark even harder to pass.

    Week 7: Baylor

    Prediction: Loss. I do not see Colorado shutting down Robert Griffin III and the Baylor offense, but Folsom Field does have strange effects on opponents, so they might get the upset.

10. Iowa State Cyclones

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    Record: 3-3 (1-1)

    Big 12 North Ranking: 4th

    National Ranking: N/A

    Ouch. Most people knew that Iowa State would lost to Utah, but not that badly. Iowa State capitalized on two early turnovers and cashed them both in. After that, Iowa State was never in the game. They went from winning 14-10 at the end of the first quarter, to losing 41-14 at halftime. After the first quarter, the entire team looked inept. Arnaud continues to struggle throwing the ball, only completing 13 of 31 for 179 yards, with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Robinson looked bad as well, only getting 45 yards on 12 carries. The defense that was able to stop Texas Tech's offense last week was nowhere to be found. The team needs to improve if they want to go bowling this year.

    Iowa State Player of the Week: David Sims. Not many candidates, but I am going to give it to the Senior CB making his first season interception.

    Week 7: @ Oklahoma

    Prediction: Loss. Good luck trying to snap Oklahoma's home winning streak. Oklahoma has struggled with teams they are supposed to crush, but that will not be the case this time. Utah State and Air Force are both better than Iowa State.

9. Texas A&M Aggies

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    Record: 3-2 (0-1)

    Big 12 South Ranking: 6th

    National Ranking: N/A

    Texas A&M had another game they could have won, but the turnover bug hit them again. This time it was not completely Jerrod Johnson's fault. What I did not understand is why Mike Sherman gave up so easily on the run game. Johnson threw for 15 of 40 for 212 yards with a touchdown and an interception. The passing game was obviously not effective. So, why not try running the ball? Michael is a great running back, but he is not being used properly. On a positive note, congrats to Von Miller for finally getting a sack. The Aggies still gave up 442 yards of offense, not what they are looking for from their supposedly improved defense. This is a team that could be 5-0, but their ball control is absolutely killing them.

    Texas A&M Player of the Week: Von Miller. He finally got a sack after getting 17 last year.

    Week 7: Missouri

    Prediction: Win. I'll go with the upset here. The Aggies have their back against the wall, and they need a win. The Tigers have yet to play a true road game, and Kyle Field is a terrible place for your first.

8. Baylor Bears

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    Record: 4-2 (1-1)

    Big 12 South Ranking: Tied for 3rd

    National Ranking: N/A

    Baylor lost a heartbreaker in the Cotton Bowl against Texas Tech. They had several chances to tie up the game and possibly win it, but it was not meant to be. The Bears are still playing their best football in years, and they have a great chance at going bowling. Still, the Bears had severe issues defending against the run. Tech ran for 173 yards, and even Taylor Potts, not exactly the most mobile QB, had some great runs. On the flipside, the Bears run game was almost nonexistent, only getting 80 yards. Robert Griffin III looked very impressive last week, but the defense and run game is going to need to improve to get those last two wins to become bowl eligible. Art Briles appears to know what he is doing, and may be the guy to finally snap the bowl drought.

    Baylor Player of the Week: Terrance Ganaway. He had the funniest kickoff return—if you missed it, go look it up.

    Week 7: @ Colorado

    Prediction: Win. Colorado is having serious issues, and Baylor's offense is very good. the Bears need this win to get closer to bowl eligibility in the tough Big 12 South.

7. Texas Tech

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    Record: 3-2 (1-2)

    Big 12 South Ranking: 5th

    National Ranking: N/A

    Texas Tech bounced back from an embarrassing performance against Iowa State to get their first conference win of the season. Texas Tech could have lost the game, but they managed to pull off the win. One thing that Tuberville can not be happy about is the special teams, which lost an onside kick for the second straight week. The running game that Tuberville talked about finally showed up, though. Texas Tech as a team ran for 173 yards, with Baron Batch getting 97. The offense moved at such a fast pace that Baylor's D-linemen could not keep up, and they had to pull their big linemen. The offense is still being led by Potts, who had 462 yards passing, with four touchdowns and an interception. This was the right decision by Tuberville to not switch to Sheffield. Baylor is a very good team, and Tech should be happy with this win.

    Texas Tech: Player of the Week: Taylor Potts. He led the team's "NASCAR" offense, and if the fast-paced style continues to keep the big linemen out of play in future games, it will pay huge dividends.

    Week 7: Oklahoma State

    Prediction: Loss. Tech may have a good offense, but the Air Raid has a new home in Stillwater. Oklahoma State also has a better defense.

6. Kansas State Wildcats

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    Record: 4-1 (1-1)

    National Ranking AP #32, Coaches' N/A

    Big 12 North Ranking: 3rd

    Kansas State simply got exposed against Nebraska. Central Florida figured out two weeks ago that if you stop Daniel Thomas, Kansas State's offense stalls. Thomas was held to 63 yards on 22 carries against the Blackshirts. Not a good sign for Kansas State. Granted, Nebraska's defense is one of the best, but if every team starts holding Thomas to below 100 yards, they are going to have to find a new game-changer quickly, preferably at quarterback, to add another dimension to their offense. Bill Snyder said he is opening up the quarterback competition. It worked well last year after Coffman was replaced, so why not try Collin Klein?  Kansas State's defense also looked really bad as well, giving up 587 yards of total offense. Fortunately, they have a very bad Kansas team with which to try and fix their mistakes.

    Kansas State Player of the Week: Chris Harper. He got his first collegiate touchdown reception.

    Week 7: @ Kansas Thursday

    Prediction: Win. Kansas State should be able to beat their instate rival, who is facing way more problems than Kansas State is having.

5. Texas Longhorns

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    Record: 3-2 (0-1)

    Big 12 South Ranking: Tied for 3rd.

    National Ranking: AP #31 Coaches' #28

    This was not exactly the way that Texas envisioned their season going. The defense is awesome, but the offense is average, and sometimes below average. What I find shocking is that some Texas fans are already calling for Gilbert to be replaced by Colt McCoy's younger brother at quarterback. Longhorn fans need to chill out. It's still early in the season, and, as Nebraska proved last year, you do not always need a good offense to win games, especially if you have a great defense. This may finally be the year that Texas has to rebuild instead of reloading. Texas's may have issues stopping the Nebraska run game, as they have shown they are not exactly the greatest at stopping the run. On the other hand, if Texas' run game would step up there would not be any talk of replacing Gilbert. Without that true running threat, Texas has become very one-dimensional.

    Texas Player of the Week: Garrett Gilbert. Give the guy a break, he has the job of replacing the winningest QB in college football history, and he is not doing that bad of a job.

    Week 7: @ Nebraska

    Prediction: Loss. Nebraska's run game is rolling and Texas' defense will be hard pressed to stop it. The lack of any run support to help Gilbert will mean he makes some costly interceptions against the Blackshirt secondary.

4. Missouri Tigers

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    Record: 5-0 (1-0)

    Big 12 North Ranking: Tied for 1st

    National Ranking: AP#19 Coaches' #22

    Missouri was impressive in blanking Colorado—shutouts are always hard to pull off. What I am most concerned about is Blaine Gabbert getting injured during the game. Around this time last year, Gabbert was injured during the Nebraska game and it affected him. Missouri also dropped the next two of three games after Nebraska. Missouri's defense played very well, even without the star of their defense, Aldon Smith. Missouri has yet to play a game outside its home state—the closest thing they had to a road game was the Illinois game, which they almost lost. They possess also almost no run game. How's this for a stat, Missouri's punter had more yards than Missouri's running backs. Not good.

    Missouri Player of the Week: Blaine Gabbert. No one else on Missouri's sideline looked that impressive last week.

    Week 7: @ Texas A&M

    Prediction: Loss. Missouri has yet to be tested on the road, or by a good defense, and Kyle Field is a bad place to have your first road game.

3. Oklahoma State Cowboys

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    Record: 5-0 (1-0)

    Big 12 South Ranking: Tied for 1st

    National Ranking: AP #20, Coaches' #18

    Oklahoma State went on their first road game, oddly to Louisiana Lafayette, and almost got upset. The Cowboys were trailing 17-21. The Cowboys came back, and came back strong. They tried an onside kick that failed, but the next play resulted in an interception which Oklahoma State was able to cash in The Air Raid 2.0 looked average in the first half, but took control in the second half. The Cowboys only gave up 121 yards, with the only blemish coming from a kickoff return for a touchdown. Brandon Weeden had issues with the turnover bug early, but he was able to get past that and throw for five touchdown passes against two interceptions. Kendall Hunter was impressive in rushing for 127 yards, but they came on 28 carries, not exactly great. They have a much harder road test coming at Texas Tech this week.

    Oklahoma State Player of the Week: Brandon Weeden. With him leading the offense, they have looked very impressive, ranking 2nd in passing. Not bad for a 26-year-old former baseball player.

    Week 7: @ Texas Tech

    Prediction: Win. Both have great offenses, but Oklahoma State has the better defense, and that will be the deciding factor.

2. Oklahoma

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    Record: 5-0 (1-0)

    Big 12 South Ranking: Tied for first

    National Ranking: AP #6, Coaches' #6

    Oklahoma did not do anything wrong, but the fact that Nebraska dominated Kansas State drops them a spot. Oklahoma's wins over Air Force and Florida State are very impressive, as both of these teams have bounced back from their only loss to challenge for their respective conference titles. Landry Jones is an excellent quarterback and has greatly improved since last year. DeMarco Murray is also having a good season, with 551 yards rushing five games into the season. Oklahoma's defense has also played very well, especially defensive end Jeremy Beal, who has six sacks and three forced fumbles. If Oklahoma keeps playing like this, they have a legitimate shot at a BCS title.

    Oklahoma Player of the Week: N/A

    Week 7: Iowa State

    Prediction: Win. Iowa State is still trying to recover from the loss to Utah, and going to Norman means it will be an easy game for the Sooners.

1. Nebraska Cornhuskers

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    Record: 5-0 (1-0)

    Big 12 North Ranking: Tied for First

    National Ranking: AP #5, Coaches' #4

    Nebraska proved they belong on top of the Big 12 last week with a dominant performance against the Wildcats. Martinez ran for more yards than any quarterback in school history, with 241 and four touchdowns. The defense also played lights out, only allowing a touchdown when the second stringers were in, and holding Daniel Thomas to only 63 yards. One thing that worries me is Nebraska's ability to throw the ball. The stats show a 79-yard TD pass to Kyler Reed, which is impressive. The film shows that Martinez missed Reed in stride, though, with Reed having to slow down to make the catch. A good secondary would have probably intercepted that. However, the win was very impressive, in what some predicted could be an upset.

    Nebraska Player of the Week: Taylor Martinez. He broke the school's single game rushing record by a quarterback, which is quite an accomplishment, considering the history of running QBs at Nebraska.

    Week 7: Texas

    Prediction: Win. All of Husker nation is looking forward to this game, no matter how much anyone tries to downplay it. The Huskers running game is on a roll, and Texas's defense has shown it has issues with the running game. Texas's strength lies in the passing game, and Nebraska's defensive strength is in the secondary.