The Big 12 Conference retained three of the Top 10 spots in this week’s USA Today Coaches Top 25 Men’s Basketball poll, released Jan. 4, though there was certainly a shake-up after Saturday’s results.
Texas (8-1, 2-0 in Big 12), which defeated Kansas, 84-59, at Allen Fieldhouse on Saturday, moved up from No. 9 to No. 4. That kept the Longhorns in the Top 10 in the poll for the second straight week.
Even though Kansas (8-2, 2-1), absorbed that loss to Texas, it was their second loss this season to a Top 10 team and the coaches didn’t punish the Jayhawks that much, as they dropped from No. 4 to No. 6 with the loss.
Baylor (9-0, 2-0), which won three games last week, including a Big 12 matchup with Iowa State, 76-65, held steady at No. 2. The Bears have occupied this spot for most of the season behind No. 1 Gonzaga, which is also undefeated.
The fourth Big 12 team in the Top 10 last week, West Virginia (8-3, 1-2), had a rough week. It started with a 73-51 win over Northeastern last Tuesday, but the win cost the Mountaineers freshman forward Isaiah Cottrell, who suffered a torn Achilles injury and is out for the season. Then, on New Year’s Day, starting forward Oscar Tshiebwe left the program for personal reasons. After that, the Mountaineers lost to Oklahoma, 75-71.
All of that led the Mountaineers to drop from No. 8 last week to No. 16 this week.
Texas Tech (8-3, 1-2) also took a hit, dropping from No. 14 last week to No. 19 this week, based largely on its overtime loss to Oklahoma State, 82-77.
That movement opened up some attention for Big 12 teams that were outside the Top 25 last week.
The Oklahoma State Cowboys (7-2, 1-2) received 50 votes after receiving three votes last week. Those additional votes came after the Cowboys defeated the Red Raiders.
The Oklahoma Sooners (6-2, 2-1) received three votes after defeating West Virginia.
This Week’s Big 12 Schedule (all times local)
Monday, Jan. 4
West Virginia at Oklahoma State, 8 p.m., ESPN2
Tuesday, Jan. 5
Kansas State at Texas Tech, 6 p.m., ESPNU
Iowa State at Texas, 7 p.m., Longhorn Network
Kansas at TCU, 9 p.m., ESPN
Wednesday, Jan. 6
Okahoma at Baylor, 8 pm., ESPN2
Saturday, Jan. 9
Baylor at TCU, TBD
Oklahoma at Kansas, TBD
Texas at West Virginia, TBD
Texas Tech at Iowa State, 3 p.m. (TV TBD)
Oklahoma State at Kansas State, 5 p.m. (TV TBD)
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