Big XII Playoff Scenarios: Season 19, Week 6

Ryan Moreland · February 16, 2024


By: Ryan Moreland (@ryanmoreland)

If you found the first two articles in this series to be boring and too straightforward, then I have a treat for you. The Big XII has been a competitive conference this season and it shows in the playoff push. Six of the seven teams are still in the hunt for a playoff bid and this gets complex. Before we jump head-first into this rat’s nest, let’s get a refresher on how the playoffs work this season.

The top three teams from each conference will receive an automatic bid for the playoffs. That will make up the top 12 seeds in the playoffs. The final four teams to get in will be decided by a league-wide vote at the season’s end. Ties will be decided the same way as last season and here is how that looks:

1Conference Record
3Record vs common conference opponents
4Point differential vs common conference opponents
5Record vs common overall opponents
6Point differential vs common overall opponents
7Overall record
8Overall point differential

Since every team will play all the members of their conference, this should never get passed Head-to-Head. But I will be using these tiebreakers to rank the teams as they stand today. Now that we are caught up, let’s look at the Big XII.

Big XII Standings

TeamOverall RecordConference RecordTiebreaker (if applicable)
Oklahoma State3-32-2Head-to-Head
Boise State2-42-3Head-to-Head
West Virginia2-42-3Head-to-Head

Say what you want about the Big XII, but they know how to make the postseason race interesting. There are four teams in the running for first place and six teams in the running for the top three. Colorado is the only team in the conference that has been mathematically eliminated from earning an automatic bid.

Let’s start with the race for the conference title. Texas has the easiest route to winning the conference. All they have to do is win one of their next two games and they win the Big XII. However, if they were to lose the next two, things would get interesting.

Cincinnati, Oklahoma State, and Baylor could all finish the season as the conference champion if Texas loses out. If Texas lost out, here is what they would these teams would need to happen to win the conference.

Cincinnati needs to win both of their games.

Oklahoma State needs to win both of their games and they need Cincinnati to lose both of their games.

Baylor needs to win both of their games, Cincinnati to lose both of their games, and Oklahoma State to lose to Colorado in Week Seven.

And that is just the race for first. The highly coveted top three spots get even more complicated. Let’s start with Texas. The worst the Longhorns could finish is 4th in the conference. However, if they win either game they punch their ticket and win the conference.

Cincinnati could finish anywhere from 1st to 4th. If the Bearcats win either of their remaining games the worst they could finish is second place. Therefore, it’s a win-and-your-in for Cincinnati.

Oklahoma State and Baylor could finish anywhere from 1st to 6th. The Cowboys still control their destiny here. If they can win their next two games, the worst possible finish would be third place. A loss will not ruin their chances, but it will hurt their odds.

Baylor, on the other hand, would need Oklahoma State to lose one more game than they do to punch their ticket. Also keep in mind that Baylor must stay ahead of Boise State, who holds a head-to-head tiebreaker over the Bears.

Boise State and West Virginia can still finish anywhere from 3rd to 6th. For Boise to punch their ticket they need the following to happen:

*Boise State beats Colorado in Week 8.
*Oklahoma State loses both of their remaining games.
*Baylor loses one of their next two games.

For the Mountaineers to punch their ticket they would need the following to happen:

*West Virginia beats Cincinnati this week.
*Baylor loses both of their remaining games.
*Oklahoma State loses one of their next two games.
*Boise State loses to Colorado in Week 8.

As you can see, there is still a lot that can happen in this conference in the next two weeks. Good luck to every team in the Big XII.


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