With the season nigh upon us, I thought I’d take a look at two of the best (IMO) projection models to compare and contrast the Big 12 finish. I know that there are plenty of you that don’t like advanced stats, but I do like the extra data even though I may not understand the math behind these advanced stats.
ESPN’s Bill Connelly released his SP+ projections over the weekend and here’s how the numbers look for the Big 12:
#19 Oklahoma State
#33 Kansas State
#48 Iowa State
#49 Texas Tech
#58 West Virginia
And for grins and giggles, NC State and Houston:
#18 NC State
- Oklahoma is far and away the favorite, maybe SP+ favors OU more than most people who vote.
- There’s the next tier of Oklahoma State, Texas, Baylor, and Kansas State with Texas getting that bump because they recruit so well. That would be my guess, but am not sure why Texas is so high. At some point recruiting will pay off, right?
- Then there’s K-State who seem to be the dark horse darlings of the Big 12. I think the numbers and people really are high on the Wildcats. We’ll see if Martinez is the real-deal as I think his play pivots the Wildcats one way or another. He has talent for sure.
- The next group is TCU, Iowa State, Texas Tech, and West Virginia. I am surprised that the numbers favor Texas Tech by 8 spots over WVU and it makes sense that TCU and ISU are all jumbled together with WVU and TTU. I don’t know what to make of that group and my bias says that Texas Tech will be good, but I’d also guess that every fanbase would say the same thing about their team in that group.
Sharp College Football also released their projections for 2022:
#12 Oklahoma State
#35 Kansas State
#44 Iowa State
#51 Texas Tech
#52 West Virginia
#18 NC State
- There is a similar group of tiers. OU at the top with OSU, UT, and then KSU following the Sooners. Definitely not a top 4 for Oklahoma, but top 10 is high. I don’t know what to think about the Sooners at quarterback, so I’m just not sure what to think until I see Dillon Gabriel play.
- Where’s Baylor? SCF sees Baylor taking a pretty major step back and so that next tier is ISU, Baylor, Texas Tech, and West Virginia. Both projections see Texas Tech as being slightly better than the Mountaineers (ever so slightly).
- Then TCU is sort of by themselves between WVU and Kansas.
- There aren’t a ton of places that have Texas Tech finishing 7th overall, usually it’s 9th, and so this is encouraging for sure. And to be within spitting distance of Baylor and Iowa State makes me think that if the Red Raiders punch up just a bit, that’s a pretty good finish.
- Both SP+ and SCF have NC State at #18 with similar projections on Houston.