REAL STANDINGS: THE BOOK OF THE ELI EDITION

 

                REAL STANDINGS:  THE BOOK OF THE ELI EDITION

            As the clock expired Monday night in Norman, commentator Kevin Connors announced, “We will be right back with the front-runner for Big 12 Coach of the Year, Scott Drew.”

            In the upset of the year, I wasn’t laughing. Not after a 30-point Road win by Baylor (77-47) at Oklahoma.

            Baylor beating Okie St by 4 in Stillwater? No biggie. Beating Tech in Waco? Winning at Home is so easy, even a Mountaineer can do it (on occasion). Defeating West Virginia in Morgantown? Who can’t do that (other than KU)? Holding off Alabama by 5 at Home? Nice Win, but what does that have to do with the Big 12?

            But Winning a Big 12 game in Norman against a Lonnie Kruger coached team by 30 points? And dominating from start to finish? That is the Big 12’s Best Game of the Year.

            And, yes, they looked coached. They played as a team on offense, not just a team of individuals who all got hot from the field at the same time. They played solid D and cleaned the glass like Paddington Bear trying to earn enough money for a fold out book of London.

            As the REAL Standings Report has noted early and often this season, Baylor looks like the team to beat in the Big 12 this year. You could look it up. (Please don’t.)

            But do give credit where credit is due. And right now, Baylor’s credit rating is approaching 900.

                                                CURRENT TIERS

                                                            TIER 1

K-STATE

DNP

BAYLOR

Defeated OU 77-47.

Baylor’s Yale transfer at PG is like having a coach on the court.

Maybe better.

IOWA STATE

Defeated WVU 93-68

To paraphrase Mark Twain, there are byes, damn byes, and West Virginia at Home.

KU

Lost to Texas 73-63.

Losing this game as projected did not hurt the Jayhawks one iota in the REAL Standings.

What did hurt is the confirmation of a trend:  KU has now lost three Big 12 Road games (at Iowa St, West Virginia, and Texas) where they have looked like five guys who just met each other teaming up in a pick-up game on the local middle school’s playground where a hoop supporting a third of a net is attached to a cement pole. Unless the Jayhawks transform themselves into a REAL team fast—you know, like they have at Baylor--they will let the formula for winning the Big 12 (going undefeated at Home and stealing 3-4 games on the Road) slip away for good. Even if they regroup quickly, where those 3-4 Road Wins might come from is a mystery worthy of Inspector Clouseau.

TEXAS TECH

Defeated TCU 84-66 at Home

A W for Tech as projected. No gain in the REAL Standings. Noteworthy, however, for the margin of victory. It Is the first time this season that TCU has been used like a wet mop in conference play. Whether that portends anything remains to be seen.

TCU

Lost at Tech 66-84

No REAL harm done to the Horned Frogs other than to their pride. Everyone is entitled to one off night. Just don’t let it turn onto two. Or three. Or more.

TEXAS

Defeated KU 73-63,

Had it not been for KU, Texas would have been the most disorganized team on the floor Tuesday night.

                                                            TIER 2

OK:AHOMA

Lost to Baylor 47-77

The Sooners had done nothing notable all season until Monday night. Losing by 30 at Home to a team coached by the front-runner for Coach of the Year is notable. Worthy of a Battlefield Demotion to Tier 2.

OKIE ST

DNP

                                                            TIER 3

WEST VIRGINIA

Lost to ISU 68-93.

The Mountaineers were not playing Kansas anymore.

                                                CURRENT REAL STANDINGS

1. 11.5-6.5

K-State (5-2): Projected L’s: (at BU, at UT, at KU, at TCU)

Up for Grabs: (at OSU)

ISU (5-3): Projected L’s: (at KSU, at TCU, at UT)

Up for Grabs: (at OU)

3.  11-7

KU (5-3): Projected L’s: (at KSU, at TCU, at TT)

Up for Grabs: (at OSU, at OU)

Texas Tech (5-3): Projected L’s: (at KU, at TCU, at ISU)
Up for Grabs: (at OU, at OSU)

BU (5-2): Projected L’s (at UT, at TT, at ISU, at KU, at KSU)
Up for Grabs: (N.A.)

6. 10,5-7,5

TCU (3-4): Projected L’s: (at BU, ISU, at UT)

Up for Grabs: (at OSU)

UT (4-4): Projected L’s (at ISU, at BU, at TT)
Up for Grabs (at OU)

8. 6.5-11.5

OU (3-5): Projected L’s: (at BU, at TCU, at ISU, at KSU)
Up for Grabs: (at WVU, ISU, TT, UT, KU)

9.  5-13

Okie St (2-5): Projected L’s (at TCU, at KU, at UT, at KSU, at TT, at BU)
Up for Grabs: (KSU, TT, TCU, KU)

10.  1.5-16.5

West Virginia (1-6): Projected L’s (at ISU, at TT, UT, at KU, KSU, at BU, TCU, at OU, ISU, at OSU)
Up for Grabs (OU)
                                                AS SEEN ON TV (All times CST)
Saturday

1,         11:00a.m.  Oklahoma at West Virginia (ESPN2) **1/2 (Up for Grabs)

            OU needs this game to salve the wounds inflicted on it in Norman by the Fighting Scotties.    That fiasco, however, makes you wonder if they are good enough to take it.

2.          1:00p.m. Texas at Iowa St (ESPN2) ****1/2 (Projected W: ISU)

Every Home game is a threat. Every Road game an opportunity. This is UT’s opportunity to move to the forefront of the conference race.

3.         3:00p.m. Texas Tech at KU (CBS) ***** (Projected W: KU)

            Tech looks to beat KU in Lawrence two straight years. Doing so will move the Red Raiders    into first Place in the REAL Standings.

4.         5:00p.m.  K-State at Oklahoma St (ESPNU) **1/2 (Up for Grabs)

            Only a half game at stake here, but a W for K-state assures it of no worse than a tie for the    REAL Standings lead heading into its confrontation with KU next Tuesday,

5.         7:00p.m.  TCU at Baylor (ESPNU) **** (Projected W: Baylor)

            Baylor’s chance to demonstrate that they are not your father’s Bears. Not that your father claimed the old Bears.

--Mark

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