1. Oklahoma State
OSU has a passing game, seven starters back on defense and the Big 12 favorite’s tag for the first time. Can the Cowboys handle having the bull’s eye on their backs?
The Sooners finished last season with a leaky defense and start this one with a freshman quarterback. Enough talent remains, though, for a fourth straight season of double-digit wins.
No team in the league returns more starters than Texas. Then again, these are the same players who underachieved last season.
The schedule and an array of playmakers position Baylor for a fast start. Then the Bears face nearly all the Big 12 contenders in a challenging final five weeks.
5. Kansas State
By now, shouldn’t everyone know better than to pick Kansas State low? This time around, star running back John Hubert and an offensive line with all the starters back provide the road map to defending their title.