So what have we learned two games into the Big 12 season?
That Mizzou is overrated? Nah. We already knew that. Not that they are bad, but everyone other than the most deluded Mizzou fan knew that they were not a Top 10 team. They have serious match-up problems against certain opponents. That’s just the long and the short of it. Emphasis on “short.” They will be tough as nails at Home, and any team that takes them out in Columbia might just be the team to beat. But they will find it tough going on the Road; even if not always as tough as Saturday when they didn’t take Manhattan. Or the Bronx. Or even Staten Island. They are certainly not ready to take Berlin.
That the Road to the Big 12 title again goes through Lawrence? Nah. We knew that also. It just took the coming of age of Travis Releford as an offensive threat to erase any doubt. Not that winning at Norman will prove to be a game changer. In fact, OU looks like it might belong in the third tier, rather than the second. Any team that hopes to win the title will win there. But the first Road W of the season is always the toughest, no matter what the venue. The Hawks now have that accomplishment under their belt—a distinction they share with only Baylor and Iowa St.
That Iowa St might be as good as advertised during the off season? Maybe. With their demolition of A&M in College Station, the Cyclones have now picked up 1.5 games in the REAL Standings in four days. And Royce White looks like the REAL Deal. Speaking of changing tiers, they could work their way into Tier One with games against Mizzou at Ames and KU in Lawrence coming up this week.
Meanwhile, A&M’s hold on a Tier Two position is looking shaky. Is it possible that the Aggies are worse than Tech? They did get pounded at Home by ISU the same day Tech was playing Baylor tough in Lubbock.
However, we will gather more information before precipitously changing anyone’s status this early in the game.
Did we learn anything about Baylor, with its fairly close call at Tech? Probably not. KU fans, of all people on earth, REALize that Lubbock is the Area 51 of college basketball.
And finally, what did we learn from Okie St at Texas? Nothing unless you had the LHN (who does)?
As stated above, it is a little early to make any changes in a team’s status based on one Road game and one at Home. Still, A&M and OU are on notice that they are under consideration for demotion, and ISU is being carefully watched for a potential battlefield promotion.
Tier 1: Baylor, KU, K-State, Mizzou, Texas
Tier 2: Iowa St, Oklahoma, Okie St, Texas A&M
Tier 3: Texas Tech
REAL BIG 12 STANDINGS
KU (2-0) Projected L’s: at UT, at Mizzou, at Baylor, at K-State At Risk games: at ISU, at A&M, at Okie St
Baylor (2-0) Projected L’s: at K-State, at KU, at Mizzou, at Texas At Risk games: at OU, at A&M, at Okie St, at ISU
K-State (1-1) Projected L’s: at Texas, at Baylor, at Mizzou At Risk games: at OU, at Okie St, at ISU, at A&M
Mizzou (1-1) Projected L’s: at Baylor, at Texas, at KU At Risk games: at Iowa St, at Okie St, at OU, at A&M
Texas (1-1) Projected L’s: at Mizzou, at K-State, at Baylor, at KU At Risk games: at ISU, at A&M, at OU, at Okie St
Iowa St (2-0) Projected L’s: at KU, at Texas, at OU, at Okie St, at Baylor, at K-State, at Mizzou
At Risk games: vs. Mizzou, at Tech, vs. KU, vs. K-State, vs. Baylor
Okie St (1-1) Projected L’s: at Baylor, at ISU, at A&M, at KU, at Mizzou, at OU, at K-State
At Risk games: vs. K-State, vs. Mizzou, at Tech, vs. Baylor, vs. Texas, vs. KU
Oklahoma (0-2) Projected L’s: at Okie St, at A&M, at K-State, at KU, at ISU, at Baylor, at Texas
At Risk games: vs. K-State, vs. Baylor, vs. Mizzou, at Tech, vs. Texas
Texas A&M (0-2) Projected L’s: at Texas, at Mizzou, at KU, at K- State, at ISU, at Okie St, at OU
At Risk games: vs.Baylor, vs. Texas, at Tech, vs. Mizzou, vs. KU, vs. K-State
Texas Tech (0-2). Projected L’s: vs. KU, at A&M, at OU, vs. K- State, at Mizzou, at Texas, at K-State, at KU, at ISU, vs. Texas, at Baylor, vs. Mizzou
At Risk games: vs. ISU, vs. Okie St, vs. OU, vs. A&M
ON THE TUBE
Oklahoma at Okie St**: (6:00p.m.—ESPNU) (Projected W: Okie St) Two of the lamer entrants in the Bedlam series in recent years.
Baylor at K-State****: (7:00p.m.—FSSW) (Projected W: K-State) The Game of the Year to this point. The league’s highest rated team, only undefeated team, and, by most accounts, most talented squad, faces its first REAL Road challenge. Will K-State have a letdown after getting up for previously undefeated Mizzou, or just pick up where it left off and be the only L for two teams? They could hang a banner. Sell a video. . .
Mizzou at Iowa St****: (7:00p.m.—Big 12 Network) (At-risk game) As intriguing games go, this one tops the list. Mizzou will be out for redemption and leave nothing on the floor. A loss here, and they will return to their normal status of being but a blip on the national radar screen—kinda like its football team from now into futurity. (Well, okay, even less of a blip.) For Iowa St, this is its opportunity to send a signal that it is for REAL by taking out its second Tier One team in its first two Home games. It will be 40 minutes of high energy basketball. You might even call it forty minutes of hell—for someone.
KU at Tech**1/2: (8:00p.m.--ESPNU) (Projected W: KU) Over/Under on attendance: 3,500. Not that it makes a difference: Better Jayhawk teams than this have lost to what might be worse Tech teams. They have lost in a frenzied atmosphere before a packed house. They have lost in mausoleum –like conditions. This game will come down to the Hawks’ summoning up the will to win from within.
A&M at Texas*1/2: (8:00p.m.—ESPN2 (Projected W: Texas) Are the Aggies going to show up or just mail in the rest of the season?