Ranking the Big 12's Football Rosters for 2019

Tom Herman's Texas Longhorns have moved past Oklahoma in terms of roster talent in the Big 12

The Texas Longhorns won back the Golden Hat last year from the Oklahoma Sooners, although their rivals from south of the Red River got the last laugh in the Big 12 title game. Something else the Longhorns recovered from OU: the top spot in the Big 12 in overall roster talent.


For the second year in a row, UT snagged the No. 3 recruiting class in the entire country. The Sooners didn't exactly fall off the map with the sixth-best overall class. As such, the two programs remain in spitting distance of each other.


Below are the national recruiting ranking averages for Big 12 schools over the last five (2015-19) classes according to 247Sports' Composite Team Rankings and each team's record over the last five (2014-18) seasons. Obviously, this doesn't take into account attrition but, over time, this should be considered relatively even across the conference.


Ranking the Big 12's College Football's Rosters in 2019


Rk Team '19 '18 '17 '16 '15 Avg W/L Conf.
1 3 3 26 11 10 10.6 33-31 24-21
2 6 9 8 20 14 11.4 54-13 38-7
3 33 25 31 23 42 30.8 47-19 30-15
4 35 30 39 17 36 31.4 36-28 22-23
5 37 33 38 44 39 38.2 44-21 27-18
6 49 35 57 39 35 43.0 40-24 27-18
7 67 74 51 45 33 54.0 27-35 15-30
8 48 53 53 52 66 54.4 24-38 15-30
9 62 68 60 73 55 63.6 37-27 24-21
10 65 62 68 89 74 71.6 9-51 3-42


Twin towers

Unfortunately for the rest of the Big 12, the Longhorns and Sooners continue to maintain a sizable personnel advantage over the rest of the teams in the conference. The gap between OU in second place and the TCU Horned Frogs in third is roughly the same as the difference between TCU and the Texas Tech Red Raiders in seventh.


If the other eight teams want to beat OU and UT, they will need to outwit them. They're not going to close the chasm in talent any time soon.


Best of luck, Les

David Beaty was hired to reignite the Kansas Jayhawks' efforts on the recruiting trail. KU made a little headway on Beaty's watch, but not nearly enough to save his job.


New head coach Les Miles has a well-deserved reputation as a recruiting dynamo. He'll need every wacky trick in his book to elevate KU recruiting back to something resembling respectability.


Iowa State on an upswing

Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell is known as one of the profession's best up-and-coming strategists. He's clearly doing plenty to stock up the Cyclones' roster, too. ISU saw its recruiting ranking tick up into the 40s in 2019, a milestone for the program.


Campbell will remain a hot name on the coaching circuit so long as he's toiling outside the spotlight in Ames. Of course, he might just bring the spotlight to Ames if he keeps this up.


Oklahoma State stuck in neutral

OSU head coach Mike Gundy has gotten crossways with athletic director Mike Holder in the past over the Cowboys' inability to cash in on the team's success by taking it to another level in recruiting. At No. 37, Gundy's team continues to hold steady versus recent years.


Holder's point is still well-taken: Until Gundy figures out how to raise his team's recruiting profile, the Pokes can only hope to challenge for a Big 12 crown once in a while. Pound for pound, however, few coaches can maximize a team's talent as well as Gundy.


Holgo had to go

Maybe it's a little harsh to say Dana Holgorsen was phoning it in for the West Virginia Mountaineers, but the No. 49 recruiting class in the latest cycle suggests he wasn't exactly beating the bushes to bring top-notch players to Morgantown. That's a sign it was probably time for the Air Raid savant to take his coaching talents to Houston.


Even if Neal Brown proves to be an ace recruiter, WVU won't ever match top Big 12 programs like OU and Texas. Even so, he can do better than what Holgo produced in his last go-round.


— Written by Allen Kenney, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Kenney is founder and editor of BlatantHomerism.com and host of the Blatant Homerism Podcast. Follow him on Twitter @BlatantHomerism.

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Thursday, January 26, 2017 - 11:02
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