The College Football News 2021 Big 12 preseason rankings along with a quick take on every team.
This is NOT a ranking of where the teams are going to finish. This is based on how good we think the Big 12 teams are going into the 2021 season.
2021 CFN Big 12 Preseason Rankings
1. Oklahoma Sooners
Quick Take: It’s time to take that next step forward – it’s a team good enough to at least get to the College Football Playoff National Championship. QB Spencer Rattler should become special, the skill players are fantastic, and the defense will be the best in the Big 12. There’s no excuse to do anything but roll through the first ten games before dealing with Iowa State and Oklahoma State.
Oklahoma Preview | Schedule
2. Iowa State Cyclones
Quick Take: The expectations are off the charts, and why not? Almost everyone is back from the team that came oh-so-close to winning the Big 12 title. It’s a better conference this time around and a few losses are coming – Oklahoma is the star of the league – but yeah, the hype is justified.
Iowa State Preview | Schedule
3. Texas Longhorns
Quick Take: It’s not going to be boring. Don’t expect new head coach Steve Sarkisian to get the offense dominating right out of the gate, but the skill talent is in place, the lines are good enough, and the expectations should be set at Big 12 Championship or bust – even with the Oklahoma and Iowa State games away from from Austin.
Texas Preview | Schedule
4. Oklahoma State Cowboys
Quick Take: 2020’s preseason darling won’t get quite as much love, but it should. It’s not going to be the high-flying fun show you’d normally expect, but the defense has talent and there’s plenty of firepower to keep up the Big 12 pace.
OSU Preview | Schedule
5. TCU Horned Frogs
Quick Take: TCU quietly rolled to a 6-4 season with a nice finishing kick – winning five of the last six games – and now it returns strong with arguably the Big 12’s best defensive front to control one side and QB Max Duggan as the star on the other.
TCU Preview | Schedule
6. Texas Tech Red Raiders
Quick Take: Yeah, Texas Tech is going to be good. The linebacking corps will be fantastic, the offensive line is a strength, and if Oregon transfer QB Tyler Shough really is the next-level talent he’s supposed to be in this O, the Red Raiders will be a problem.
Texas Tech Preview | Schedule
7. Kansas State Wildcats
Quick Take: It’s the Big 12’s wild-card team. The offensive backfield is good enough to carry things from time to time, but it’s the under-the-radar secondary that might be the differentiating factor. Watch out, though – the schedule is tougher than it appears.
K-State Preview | Schedule
8. West Virginia Mountaineers
Quick Take: Can the offense match the defense? Head coach Neal Brown needs to fight the offensive punch to come through when needed, but the other side of the ball will keep the team in just about every game.
WVU Preview | Schedule
9. Baylor Bears
Quick Take: Year Two under Dave Aranda will be better. The receiving corps is good, the offense will be stronger, and with this coaching staff, the defense is about to take a giant leap forward.
Baylor Preview | Schedule
10. Kansas Jayhawks
Quick Take: The Jayhawks got a terrific coach in Lance Leipold from Buffalo, but it’s going to take a long, long while before this thing gets moving. It’s going to take a total overhaul, but the team will bring the fight.
Kansas Preview | Schedule