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College Football Week 12: Big 12 Conference Power Rankings Logic By the Lake

Lake CruiseAnalyst IDecember 31, 2016

College Football Week 12: Big 12 Conference Power Rankings Logic by the Lake

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    Bob Levey/Getty Images

    Hello again, and welcome to this week's version of my Big 12 power rankings.  I was in Waco, Texas — home of Lake Waco and some good high school football.

    The Battle of the Brazos turned into a shocker, but it wasn't the only one in the conference.  See Colorado-Iowa State.

    The Big 12 Conference has been one of the premier conferences in terms of competitiveness.  Predicting outcomes has been difficult, but I've held my own.

    This week will hold many more surprises. 

    Nebraska and Oklahoma State, meanwhile, sit atop the North and South divisions.  Could they be heading to a match-up in the Big 12 Championship?  Possibly.

    Read on to find out which Big 12 team can still win it all.

12. Iowa State Cyclones: Did Nebraska Beat Them Two Weeks Straight?

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    The Cyclones turned into thunderstorms, but it was a wrong turn.  They are probably still driving in the wrong direction.

    Iowa State looked lethargic compared to the hyper Colorado squad in Boulder. 

    I believe the boys from Ames, Iowa experienced the lingering losing feeling after a game they should have won against Nebraska.  The Cyclones' cheerleaders have work to do.

    ISU will have a chance to redeem themselves against a Missouri squad which comes into Ames playing solid football.

    It will be the Cyclones' last game of the regular year.  They need a victory to become bowl eligible.

    Prediction: The Cyclones will go out on a low note and lose to the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

11. Colorado Buffaloes: Watch Out Wildcats for Buffs Crossing

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    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    Getting a new coach generally boosts a team's adrenaline.  The Buffaloes have a new coach, and his team showed out for him last week.  I cannot expect the same thing this week at Folsom Field.

    Prediction: The team will continue to play better and they could upset Kansas State, but the adrenaline will not be there for the Buffs in Boulder.  Watch out for falling rocks.

10. Kansas Jayhawks: Can They Curtail the Cowboys' Horses?

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    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    OSU comes in hotter than a bowl of prairie chili.  It could be a Cowboy breakfast in Lawrence.  I expect Oklahoma State to pluck and fry the Jayhawks.

    The Hawks are improving however, and they could prove me wrong.  I'm never wrong by much.  Right? 

    Prediction:  Lock down the ladies and the lil' ones: Justin Blackmon is the new sheriff in town, and he wears the color black. 

9. Texas Longhorns: Stop Piling On

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    These are young men and not professionals.  They don't deserve the reaction they are getting in a lot of places. 

    It is absolutely wrong to pile on when things aren't going well — in anything.  That is my belief, and I'm sticking to it.

    If you've ever been through prolonged hard times, then you feel what I'm saying.

    Prediction: The piling on will cease, and the Longhorns will improve.

     

8. Texas Tech Red Raiders: The Pirates of Texas Took a Can of You Know What

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    I don't believe the inland pirates have enough confidence to go raiding in enemy territory.

    The good thing is they don't have to.  Their enemies come to Lubbock for the last two games of the regular season.

    Tommy Tuberville — I call him Tommy T. whether he likes it or not —  has a very young squad.  Freshmen and redshirts are all over the roster.

    This could be a good formula for future winning, the way I see it.

    Prediction: Lubbock will enjoy the next game — a resounding victory over Weber State. 

7. Kansas State Wildcats: Can the Cats Claw the Buffaloes?

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    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    Do you know the difference between a Buffalo, a Bison and a Wildcat?  I do — it's KSU Coach Bill Snyder.

    His team next faces Colorado and North Texas.  Those games will not be walks along the lake. 

    Snyder should have the team's undivided attention, however, after their performance at Mizzou.  I can't be too hard on the Wildcats.  It was Mizzou's senior day. 

    Prediction: The Cats will claw the Buffaloes and North Texas.  Already bowl eligible, KSU will play in a respectable bowl game.

6. Baylor Bears: Can the Bears Rebound From the Brazos Beating?

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    The Bears hit a rough spot in their schedule and have bumped their heads.  Who knows what the ride will be like against OU next week in Waco.

    The Sooners are rolling like a 2010 Cadillac.  I prefer Navigators, myself.  I don't believe the Bears can navigate back to their winning formula.  

    Baylor is bowl eligible, and it seems to me they will be satisfied with the situation.

    Prediction: BU will lose to OU, and it could get ugly in the first quarter.

5. Oklahoma Sooners: Boomers and Schooners Normally Dominate in Norman

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    Last Saturday, they looked like the 1985 Sooners didn't they?

    OU is a mystery to me this season.  One of my high school classmates was a starting tailback for them awhile back, but I pull no punches — as some journalists do.

    They should have a much better record than they do, and I blame the coaches. 

    I know criticizing the Stoops family is like dropping and breaking the Holy Grail, but I bet they are more critical of themselves.

    I believe the coaches will bring big and beautiful smiles to Boomer Sooners.

    Prediction: Oklahoma will continue to roll by beating Baylor.  I'm not so sure how OU will do against OSU.  Check with me next week.

4. Texas A&M Aggies: Has the Wrecking Crew Righted the Ship?

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    Aaron M. Sprecher/Getty Images

    They are the Big 12's hottest team and could very well prove me wrong by beating Nebraska next week in College Station. 

    They are motivated by a chance to catch and run past OSU in the Big 12 South's race.

    Prediction: The Aggies will lose to Nebraska but race past Texas.

3. Missouri Tigers: Is the Growl Back in the Tigers Offense?

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    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    The Tigers are a much better team when they play in Columbia, Mo.  Unfortunately, their home schedule is finished.  They go to Ames, Iowa next and to Kansas City to finish their regular schedule.

    ISU and Kansas could very well upset the Tigers if Mizzou doesn't bring their running game, as they did against the Wildcats.

    This is the most winning group of seniors Mizzou has had since 1969.  They could finish as the premier senior group ever in Columbia.

    Their cheerleaders should be growling instead of purring.

    Prediction: The Tigers will keep the growl in their offense by running the ball more, and the seniors could finish as the best Mizzou has had over a four year span. 

2. Oklahoma State Cowboys: Is Mike Gundy the Best Coach in the Conference?

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    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Billionaire T. Boone Pickens' boys are no doubt making him proud.  The OSU Cowboys have one of the fastest rising programs in the nation. 

    If Dez Bryant's success in the NFL is any indication, then Justin Blackmon could be the best thing since cowboy boots.  He will continue to boot the competition. 

    I believe the competitive Mike Gundy is the best coach in the conference and will elevate the program to unprecedented levels. 

    Prediction: OSU will smash Kansas and squeak by OU.  They will face Nebraska in the Big 12 title game and could still win it all.

1. Nebraska Cornhuskers: Will They Finish Strong In Their Final Big 12 Season?

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    Eric Francis/Getty Images

    In general, when in Lincoln, Neb. one comes across the best fans in the nation — period.  Of course, there are exceptions to the rule.

    The Huskers may be winning ugly, but they are winning.  The team appears to be out of the running for finishing No. 1 in the nation, but the storied tradition remains. 

    I picked Big Red to beat Texas and lose at Iowa State.  I was wrong on both occasions — a rarity.  Yet, I hold no bitter feelings.  I was very close to being right in the ISU case. 

    I expect the Huskers to be much better next season in the Big Ten Conference.

    Prediction: The Huskers will finish strong and face OSU for the Big 12 Championship.

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