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Bock: Big 12 Basketball Updated Power Rankings 1/16

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Photo: Kelsie LeRose / WVSN

With Big 12 play heading into its third week of the conference season, let’s take a look at WVSN’s power rankings.

1. KANSAS

Kansas looks like they could repeat as national champions behind a revamped roster that’s built around returning forward Jalen Wilson. Freshman Gradey Dick is one of the best shooters in the country. Jayhawks have had a lot of close games at home but have proven to close out each game.

2. KANSAS STATE

The biggest shock in the country. It’s not surprising to me that Jerome Tang’s first year at K-State is a competitive team. What’s shocking to me is how consistent this team is and how great the offense is. Kansas State has two Big 12 Player of the Year candidates in Keyonte Johnson and Markquis Nowell. Only flaw I see is their depth.

3. IOWA STATE

TJ Otzelberger hasn’t lost a beat in his second year as head coach in Ames. Cyclones are once again a tough team that includes elite defense. Senior transfer Tre King is finally eligible for ISU and may be able to add more offense that’s needed.

4. TEXAS

With Chris Beard out in Austin, the Longhorns move on from that distraction and still stand as a top 10 team in the country. Marcus Carr is a bucket and he proved that against Texas Tech on Saturday.

5. TCU

TCU’s hype from the preseason was warranted so far as the Horned Frogs are going to compete in the conference and return to the NCAA Tournament in March. Preseason Big 12 Player of the Year Mike Miles is averaging 19 points per game.

6. BAYLOR

Baylor surprisingly started out 0-3 in Big 12 play but had a great week defeating West Virginia and Oklahoma State. I think the Bears still miss that glue guy like Mark Vital. Freshman Keyonte George is a future great NBA scorer.

7. OKLAHOMA

Like many teams in the conference, Oklahoma could have a few more wins under their belts if a couple close scores went their way. In OU’s three Big 12 losses, their point differential is -3.

8. OKLAHOMA STATE

Oklahoma State’s only win was against West Virginia after the Mountaineers fell apart in Stillwater. Cowboys played Kansas close in Lawrence up 15 points at halftime but ended up blowing that lead. I really like the additions of John-Michael Wright and Caleb Asberry for guard depth for Mike Boynton.

9. WEST VIRGINIA

WVU’s summary through five games is shooting themselves in the foot. Mountaineers fell apart during the Kansas State and Oklahoma State road trip early in the month and it has cost them ever since. West Virginia has missed 56 free throws during league play with a -33 point differential through five games. I think WVU can get back on track by simply winning and gaining their confidence back.

10. TEXAS TECH

It’s Jan. 16 and Texas Tech’s best win all year is Georgetown, who hasn’t won a conference game in over a full calendar year. The Red Raiders have competed in all five games so far with the exception of a blowout against Iowa State on the road. Mark Adams does have positives with freshman Pop Isaacs showing out and transfer big Fardaws Aimaq returning from his foot injury over the weekend.

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