I hope your REAL life was full of fun and excitement during this mid-week period, because those qualities were sorely lacking on the Big 12’s basketball courts. A couple of weeks from now, they would call this “chalk” (and not of the Rock variety). To summarize:
- Texas defeated Baylor in Austin, as projected. Both teams’ REAL records remained the same.
- Iowa State defeated Oklahoma in Ames, as projected. Both teams’ REAL records remained the same.
- KU defeated West Virginia in Lawrence, as projected. Both teams’ REAL records remained the same.
- Okie St defeated TCU in Stillwater, as projected. Both teams’ REAL records remained the same.
To be clear, the REAL Standings are not intended to be predictive. It just sometimes seems that way.
In REALity, the REAL Standings serve as an indicator as to which teams are in the best position to win the conference championship based not only on their current records, but on who they have played and where and who they have yet to play and where.
Oklahoma and KU took the inside track to the title early in the season (OU after two games, KU after one), with Road W’s at Texas and Baylor respectively. Those wins resulted in both teams being projected to finish at 13-5, ahead of West Virginia (12.5-5.5), Iowa St (12-6), and Texas and Baylor (11-7).
With one game left on the schedule, KU is projected to finish 13-5, OU at 12-6, West Virginia 11-7, Iowa St 12-6, and Baylor 11-7.
And Texas? OU is fond of saying they suck. (And, to be fair, the reverse is also true.) Which is hard to argue with, considering the pre-season favorite is projected to finish 8-10.
On the bright side, there are five opportunities this weekend for teams with projected L’s to create some excitement by claiming unexpected W’s. If one of those teams is KU, the Jayhawks will win the Big XII title by two games. And won’t that be fun?
As a result:
1. The Road to the Big XII title again went to, not through, Lawrence. The only Big XII team to finish the season undefeated at Home is the 2015 champion.
2. What else is there?
- Tier 1: Iowa State, Kansas, Oklahoma, West Virginia
- Tier 2: Baylor, K-State, Okie St, Texas
- Tier 3: TCU
- Tier 4: Texas Tech
- KU (13-4) Projected Losses: at OU At risk games: N/A
- Iowa St: (11-6) Projected Losses: N/A At risk games: N/A
- Oklahoma (11-6) Projected Losses: N/A At risk games: N/A
- West Virginia (10-7) Projected Losses: N/A At risk games: N/A
- Baylor (10-7) Projected Losses: N/A At risk games: N/A
- Okie St (8-9) Projected Losses: at WVU At risk games: N/A
- Texas (7-10) Projected Losses: N/A At risk games: N/A
- K-State (8-9) Projected Losses: at UT At-risk games: N/A
- TCU (4-13) Projected Losses: ISU At risk games: N/A
- Texas Tech (3-14) Projected Losses: at BU At risk games: N/A
BIG XII SCHEDULE
1. Texas Tech at Baylor (8:00pm) * (Projected W: BU)
Baylor gets the easiest task of the weekend: The conference’s worst team at Home. Should be a Good Friday for the Bears.
2. Okie St at West Virginia (1:00p.m.)*** (Projected W: WVU)
Okie St has lost 4 of their last 5 games, downing only TCU at Home Wednesday night. According to the doctors of bracketology, a W here assures the Cowboys of a spot in the Field of 68.
As for West Virginia, do they have anything left in the tank, even at Home, after busting a gut physically and emotionally for 45 minutes Tuesday night in Allen Fieldhouse?
3. KU at Oklahoma (3:00pm)**** (Projected W: OU)
This game decides whether future generations will look back on 2015 as one in which KU eked out its 11th consecutive conference championship or lapped the field--accurate or inaccurate as either perception might be.
4. K-State at Texas (3:00pm)***1/2 (Projected W: UT)
Texas likely avoids being subjected to further comments about the Longhorn NITwork with a W here, especially if they follow it up with a win their first game in the BOGus XII Tournament next week.
K-State, on the other hand, needs this game desperately to secure an NIT bid.
5. Iowa St at TCU (7:30p.m.) *** (Projected W: ISU)
Iowa St could lose this game. REALly!
There was even a time when it would have mattered.