BIG 12 OUTLOOK: 01.26.09


Big Twelve Conference Standings

(updated 1.25.2009 at 1:39 AM CST)

Conf Overall
W L W L
Oklahoma Sooners 5 0 19 1
Kansas Jayhawks 4 0 15 4
Missouri Tigers 4 1 17 3
Texas Longhorns 3 1 14 4
Baylor Bears 3 2 15 4
Oklahoma St. Cowboys 2 2 13 5
Nebraska Cornhuskers 2 3 12 6
Iowa St. Cyclones 1 3 12 7
Texas Tech Red Raiders 1 3 11 8
Texas A&M Aggies 1 4 15 5
Kansas St. Wildcats 1 4 12 7
Colorado Buffaloes 0 4 8 10


Damn, it feels good to be out of last place. I tell you what, that wine tasted amazing. It tasted of sweet victory.

That said, let's not get carried away. All we have proved for now is that we aren't the worst team in the Big 12, but we might still be the 11th-best team (or tied for 10th, I guess). Thursday's Big 12 Outlook projected us to lose to Missouri and Texas this week to complete a 1-6 January in Big 12 play. Did Saturday's results change the Cats' prospects any? Click the jump to find out...

Seed* Record* RPI Pomeroy Sagarin Best Win** Worst Loss** Coach
Oklahoma 1 15-1 3 14 5 Purdue Arkansas Jeff Capel
Kansas 2 13-3 34 18 30 Washington Massachusetts Bill Self
Missouri 3 13-3 31 8 17 USC Nebraska Mike Anderson
Texas 4 11-5 25 27 26 UCLA Arkansas Rick Barnes
Oklahoma State 5 10-6 27 33 36 Tulsa Baylor Travis Ford
Baylor 6 10-6 23 28 23 Arizona State Texas A&M Scott Drew
Nebraska 7 7-9 84 63 76 Missouri UMBC Doc Sadler
Kansas State 8 6-10 97 44 71 Cleveland State Oregon Frank Martin
Texas A&M 9 5-11 50 83 65 Baylor Tulsa Mark Turgeon
Iowa State 10 4-12 128 105 100 Houston Hawai'i Greg McDermott
Texas Tech 11 2-14 99 112 101 New Mexico Lamar Pat Knight
Colorado 12 0-16 237 185 207 Colorado State SMU Jeff Bzdelik

Note: As any of these numbers change, I will color-code them to indicate direction of change.
Team names that are colored indicate a change in seed.
(green = upward, red = downward)

*Predicted
**According to Pomeroy rating

 

Discussion

There was some minor shuffling this weekend, but nothing too significant. I'm starting to think my system has a real handle on things, but undoubtedly some shocking upset will come next week, like K-State beating Texas or something equally unpredictable, to restore my humility.

Oklahoma broke the midweek tie because they are now projected to beat Baylor in Waco. (sarcasm) I can't imagine why the computers suddenly decided on that outcome (/sarcasm).

The rest of the Top 4 seeds appear to be fairly well locked in, too. Texas has been sitting at No. 4 for a few weeks now, in fact. The Kansas-Missouri tie is still being broken by record against North teams, by the way.

Likewise, the bottom of the pack is pretty settled as well. Tech picked up a projected home win over A&M; hence, the Aggies have slipped into the lower third for the time being. Also, it seems that Colorado's computer numbers can go lower - all it took was a home loss to equally woeful K-State.

Iowa State disproved the old adage that it is better to lose to good teams (Kansas), while also proving that close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and thermonuclear war. Despite Brackin's 42-point explosion (Beasley could tell them something about going off for 40+ and still losing the game), the Cyclones were beaten solidly and their numbers absolutely tanked, but what really hurt them is that they are once again predicted to lose to the Wildcats in Ames. Yikes.

As usual, the most interesting happenings were in the middle of the bracket. Oklahoma State has begun to make a strong push to become an NCAA Tournament team, but it may come at the expense of Baylor and thus leave the conference with five overall teams still.

The Cowboys' RPI has climbed to a very good 27, they have no bad losses, and that road win in Lincoln was a nice feather in their hat. If they keep collecting quality road wins against the middling teams, and pull a few upsets (Outlook currently has them beating Baylor and Texas in Stillwater), Travis Ford is going to be a shoo-in for Coach of the Year when he takes his team to the Big Dance.

The other side of that coin, of course, is Baylor. Getting beaten like a red-headed Baptist stepchild in Norman did nothing good for them, as you might expect. They are now tied with Oklahoma State at 10-6 (a tie broken by record against the South), and while they have no truly bad losses (although that A&M loss is looking worse and worse), they also have no really good wins other than Arizona State.

I don't think they're in real trouble, yet, but they better start picking off some decent teams and they certainly should be avoiding any more ugly losses like Saturday's. (On a related note: Oklahoma just destroyed Baylor, and the Bears in turn beat us pretty bad in Manhattan. So how did we only lose to Oklahoma by eight? This league is weird sometimes...)

And that leaves K-State and Nebraska and our epic battle for 7th place. The Huskers still have the upper hand, of course, but our overtime road win combined with their overtime home loss tweaked the computers enough that the gap between the two teams shrunk by two games. One unexpected loss for Sadler's crew or one unexpected win for the Cats might be enough to jump us back into that No. 7 spot, and I'd call that a damn good season after the way things were looking just a few days ago.

Based on Saturday's results, Pomeroy now projects us to lose to Texas A&M. He also now projects Texas Tech to beat Texas A&M in Lubbock. There were no other changes in the Pomeroy projections.

Based on Saturday's results, Sagarin now projects us to beat Iowa State in Ames. He also now projects Oklahoma to beat Baylor in Waco (gee, I wonder why?) and Texas in Austin, Oklahoma State to beat Texas A&M in College Station, and Texas Tech to beat Nebraska. There were no other changes in the Sagarin projections.

 

Self-Evaluation

Big 12 Outlook correctly predicted wins in five of six games on Saturday. Although a flip of the coin resulted in one incorrect pick, I would again point out that it was a toss-up game. I suppose that represents some small vindication for Pomeroy, who had Oklahoma State beating Nebraska. This is why I use more than one computer system, you see. Obviously neither is perfect, but together, they're pretty good so far.

As you can see below, I like Iowa State, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma to win on the road versus division rivals, but brace yourself - that would be an abnormal amount of road wins for any given week in the Big 12. We could finally see some real upsets, and I would love it if Kansas State and Nebraska were responsible for them. You also can't rule out Bedlam; gotta throw the record book out in that one, usually.

I also like Baylor and Texas A&M to win at home, but Baylor has to be reeling after that loss Saturday and a quick turnaround to face Texas, even at home, is not what the doctor ordered. Come to think on it, this week could really blow Big 12 Outlook out of the water. It will be interesting to see what happens...

 

Key

Obviously, R serves only as a tiebreaker, so it is only listed when there is a split between P and S.

Results are plugged into this wonderful tool to generate the predicted records and seed order.

 

Predicted Outcomes

01.10
61 Tech
73 Baylor
67 I-State
75 Texas
61 Oklahoma
53 K-State
51 Missouri
56 Nebraska
61 A&M
72 O-State
01.12-01.14
63 Texas
78 Oklahoma
71 K-State
87 Kansas
53 Nebraska
65 I-State
62 Colorado
107 Missouri
73 Baylor
84 A&M
01.17
92 O-State
98 Baylor (OT)
73 Kansas
56 Colorado
46 I-State
77 Missouri
51 K-State
73 Nebraska
69 Oklahoma
63 A&M
71 Texas
49 Tech
01.19-01.21
53 A&M
73 Kansas
55 Colorado
63 Tech
83 Baylor
65 K-State
97 Missouri
95 O-State
61 Nebraska
72 Oklahoma
01.24
77 K-State
75 Colorado (OT)
82 Kansas
67 I-State
86 Tech
97 Missouri
76 O-State
74 Nebraska (OT)
76 Baylor
95 Oklahoma
58 A&M
67 Texas
01.26-01.28
Oklahoma (PS)
@ O-State
Texas
@ Baylor (PS)
I-State (PS)
@ Colorado
Missouri (PS)
@ K-State
Kansas (PS)
@ Nebraska
Tech
@ A&M (PS)
01.31
Oklahoma (PS)
@ I-State
K-State
@ Texas (PS)
Colorado
@ Kansas (PS)
Baylor
@ Missouri (PS)
Nebraska (PR)
@ Tech (S)
O-State (PS)
@ A&M
02.02-02.04
Kansas
@ Baylor (PS)
I-State
@ K-State (PS)
Nebraska (PS)
@ Colorado
Missouri (P)
@ Texas (RS)
Tech
@ O-State (PS)
A&M
@ Oklahoma (PS)
02.07
Colorado
@ Oklahoma (PS)
Missouri (PS)
@ I-State
K-State
@ A&M (PS)
O-State
@ Kansas (PS)
Texas (PS)
@ Nebraska
Baylor (PS)
@ Tech
02.09-02.11
Kansas
@ Missouri (PS)
O-State
@ Texas (PS)
Oklahoma (RS)
@ Baylor (P)
Colorado
@ I-State (PS)
Tech
@ K-State (PS)
02.14
A&M
@ Baylor (PS)
Texas (PS)
@ Colorado
I-State
@ O-State (PS)
Kansas (PS)
@ K-State
Nebraska
@ Missouri (PS)
Tech
@ Oklahoma (PS)
02.16-02.18
Texas (PS)
@ A&M
I-State
@ Kansas (PS)
Colorado
@ Nebraska (PS)
O-State (PS)
@ Tech
02.21
Missouri (PS)
@ Colorado
K-State (PS)
@ I-State
Nebraska
@ Kansas (PS)
Baylor
@ O-State (PS)
A&M (S)
@ Tech (PR)
Oklahoma (RS)
@ Texas (P)
02.23-02.25
Kansas
@ Oklahoma (PS)
Baylor (PS)
@ I-State
A&M
@ Nebraska (PS)
O-State (PS)
@ Colorado
K-State
@ Missouri (PS)
Tech
@ Texas (PS)
02.28-03.01
Colorado
@ Baylor (PS)
I-State
@ A&M (PS)
Nebraska
@ K-State (PS)
Texas
@ O-State (PS)
Oklahoma (PS)
@ Tech
Missouri
@ Kansas (PS)
03.02-03.04
Baylor
@ Texas (PS)
K-State
@ O-State (PS)
A&M (PS)
@ Colorado
Kansas (PS)
@ Tech
Oklahoma
@ Missouri (PS)
I-State
@ Nebraska (PS)
03.07
Tech
@ I-State (PS)
Colorado
@ K-State (PS)
Texas
@ Kansas (PS)
Missouri (PS)
@ A&M
Nebraska
@ Baylor (PS)
O-State
@ Oklahoma (PS)
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