For three days, I kept hearing and reading lies: that k-state was atop the Big 12 standings.
Those who bothered to take the short trip to phogblog.com knew better. KU was still in first place in the REAL Big 12 Standings, where winning any Home game does not improve your lot, nor does losing a Road game to a team in your peer group damage your position—with the exception of when it comes at the hands of an opponent from the other division, and you do not get the opportunity to even the score on your Home court.
Repeat the REAL Standings mantra after me: You prove yourself on the Road. You win championships on the Road. All you can do at Home is stay alive.
In the REAL world, k-state had simply managed to tread water Wednesday night in Manhattan, no matter how history views their first W in 25 tries exploits. They remained where they were prior to that game REAL Standings-wise: ½ game behind the Jayhawks.
However, k-state had a chance to move into a flat-footed tie with KU Saturday. All they had to do to make up that ½ game was win at Columbia. KU, playing Two Tier Lower Colorado in Boulder could not make any headway in the REAL Standings—this was a game they were projected to win. k-state’s game, on the other hand, being at One Tier Lower Mizzou, was a losable game, meaning they could gain ½ game with a Road victory.
Of course, it also meant k-state could lose ½ game and fall a full game behind the Hawks in the REAL Standings.
The latter happened. Meaning that KU is now more firmly in control of the Big 12 race than it was before going to Manhattan.
All other games this weekend went as projected: UT, Tech, NU, and A&M all prevailed at Home vs. Baylor, Okie St, Iowa St, and OU respectively. No change in the REAL Standings for any of these eight teams. Only k-state and Mizzou made any movement, which was inevitable under the REAL Standings formula.
REAL STANDINGS: 2/3/08
KU (6-1) Projected L’s: at UT Losable games: at OSU, at A&M
k-state (5-1) Projected L’s: at BU, at KU Losable games: at TT, at NU
Baylor (4-2) Projected L’s: at KU Losable games: at OSU, at OU, at TT
UT (4-2) Projected L: at BU, at ksu Losable games: at OU, at TT
A&M (4-3) Projected L: at MU, at UT, at OU, at BU Losable games: at ISU, KU
OU (3-3) Projected L’s: at A&M, at TT, at UT, at NU, at OSU Losable games: UT, at CU, BU
NU (2-4) Projected L’s: at ksu, at A&M, at OSU, at UT Losable games: at ISU, ksu
Tech (3-3) Projected L’s: at BU, at NU, at A&M, at KU Losable games: ksu, at CU, UT, BU
MU (3-4) Projected L’s: at KU, at NU, at ksu, at BU, at OU Losable games: N.A.
OSU (1-6) Projected L’s: at ksu, at A&M, at MU, at UT Losable games: Baylor, KU
ISU (3-4) Projected L’s: UT, at OU, at TT, KU, at CU, at MU, ksu Losable games: A&M, NU
CU (1-6) Projected L’s: at OSU, at KU, at MU, BU, at ksu, at NU Losable games: OU, TT
FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE
Big XII Weekday Games, with IQ (Interest Quotient) on a 1-4 star scale:
1. Mizzou at KU (8:00p.m.)***1/2
Doesn’t look like much on paper. But, hey, it’s Kansas v. Missouri. You can bet that Mizzou will bring it for 40 minutes.
Projected W: KU
2. A&M at Iowa St (7:00p.m.)***
Iowa St is a Level Three Team, but has shown that it is a tough out in Ames. The Aggies, trying to work their way back to the Top Tier after lsong to Baylor at Home and being blown out on the Road by Tech and k-state, better come prepared with an antidote for Hilton Magic or their newly-regained prowess could be history.
Projected W: None
3. UT at OU (6:00p.m.)****
UT takes to the Road again to play another arch-rival. And fighting for survival in the championship race. They can’t afford a third Road loss to a Tier Two Team. Should be the game of the week.
Projected W: None
4. Colorado at Okie St (7:00p.m.)*1/2
A rare chance for a Buffalo Road victory. If they play like they did in Austin, Okie St will be in for a battle.
Projected W: OSU
5. NU at k-state (7:00p.m.)**1/2
NU goes for three in a row. Unfortunately, this game is not at Home (a la ISU), against a Level Three Team (ISU), or vs. a suspension depleted team (Mizzou). It is against a team that has shown that it can play well at Home.
Projected W: k-state
6. Tech at Baylor (7:00p.m.)**1/2
If Tech plays like it has on the Road all season, this one will be a laugher at Bobby Knight’s expense.
Projected W: Baylor