Big 12

Big 12 Conference capsules

1. Kansas

Coach: Bill Self, 237-46 in eight seasons

2010-11: 35-3, 14-2 Big 12, Elite Eight

Star power: G Tyshawn Taylor (9.7 points, 3.1 rebounds), G Elijah Johnson (3.4 points, 1.3 rebounds), F Thomas Robinson (7.6 points, 6.4 rebounds)

Remember this name: C Jeff Withey. The 7-footer will be a key post player after doing little last season as a backup.

Glass half full: The Jayhawks are once again picked by many to win the Big 12, and they have the talent to bring home another trophy. Robinson and Taylor should be the best guard/forward duo in the league.

Glass half empty: Kansas lost six key contributors from last year's team, including NBA Draft picks Marcus Morris, Markieff Morris and Josh Selby. That talent will be difficult to replace given the Jayhawks' lack of depth. If KU doesn't stay healthy, it could be a rough year.

Come mid-March: The Jayhawks will be in the NCAA Tournament, and if some new talent develops at a quick rate, they could challenge for another March Madness run.

2. Baylor

Coach: Scott Drew, 127-116 in eight seasons

2010-11: 18-13, 7-9 Big 12

Star power: F Quincy Acy (12.4 points, 7.6 rebounds), Perry Jones (13.9 points, 7.2 rebounds), Anthony Jones (8.5 points, 5.3 rebounds).

Remember this name: F Quincy Miller. The freshman big man has the talent to become Baylor's first one-and-done player.

Glass half full: Baylor is the most talented team in the Big 12, and with Acy, Anthony Jones and Perry Jones all coming back, the Bears should have improved chemistry. If Drew can get them to jell, they could be the best team in the league.

Glass half empty: This same core group, plus explosive guard LaceDarius Dunn, was so dysfunctional a year ago that it went 7-9 in the Big 12 and missed the postseason. Who's to say this year will go better?

Come mid-March: In a down year for the Big 12, Baylor's talent will win out most games. Expect the Bears to challenge Kansas and Texas A&M for a league title.

3. Texas A&M

Coach: Billy Kennedy, first season

2010-11: 24-9, 10-6 Big 12, NCAA second round

Star power: F David Loubeau (11.8 points, 5.0 rebounds), G Khris Middleton (14.4 points, 5.2 rebounds), G Naji Hibbert (5.2 points, 2.3 rebounds).

Remember this name: G Jamal Branch. The prized recruit of Texas A&M's latest recruiting class should make an immediate impact.

Glass half full: Mark Turgeon left a talented group when he left for Maryland. Middleton is one of the best guards in the country, and the Aggies return a veteran core. That mixture should help them make a run at a Big 12 title.

Glass half empty: By all accounts, Billy Kennedy looks like a good hire. But how will Texas A&M's returning players adapt to a new coach this season? Adjusting to a new system could take time.

Come mid-March: The Aggies haven't been to the Sweet 16 since 2007. This could be the return year.

4. Texas

Coach: Rick Barnes, 322-123 in 13 seasons

2010-11: 28-8, 13-3 Big 12, NCAA third round

Star power: G J'Covan Brown (10.4 points, 2.2 rebounds), F Alexis Wangmene (2.3 points, 2.3 rebounds), F Clint Chapman (redshirted).

Remember this name: G Myck Kabongo could be the Longhorns' top freshman point guard since T.J. Ford.

Glass half full: Texas will be one of the youngest teams around, but it has talent. Brown is a terrific guard and Kabongo could make an immediate impact.

Glass half empty: The Longhorns return five players from last season. With such a small core group of veterans, it will be impossible to replace the losses of Tristan Thompson and Cory Joseph. Reaching the NCAA Tournament could be difficult.

Come mid-March: Texas will be a bubble team for the first time in years under Barnes. A brutal schedule, which includes games against North Carolina and UCLA, should help its power-rating cause.

5. Missouri

Coach: Frank Haith, first season

2010-11: 23-11, 8-8 Big 12, NCAA second round

Star power: F Laurence Bowers (11.6 points, 6.1 rebounds), G Marcus Denmon (16.9 points, 3.5 rebounds), G Kim English (10.0 points, 3.1 rebounds).

Remember this name: F Kadeem Green. The freshman could prove valuable to the Tigers as a shot-blocker right away.

Glass half full: The Tigers return five players who averaged 10 or more points. Missouri should have a chemistry advantage over most in the Big 12.

Glass half empty: Haith uses a much different system than Mike Anderson. Moving away from a full-court press won't be easy.

Come mid-March: Missouri should be able to reach the NCAA Tournament, maybe as a bubble team, in Haith's first season.

6. Oklahoma State

Coach: Travis Ford, 65-37 in three seasons

2010-11: 20-14, 6-10 Big 12, NIT second round

Star power: G Keiton Page (13.2 points, 2.1 rebounds), Jean-Paul Olukemi (11.1 points, 4.1 rebounds), Darrell Williams (7.1 points, 7.3 rebounds).

Remember this name: G LeBryan Nash. One of the nation's top high school players a year ago, he will be asked to do a lot as a freshman.

Glass half full: Page knows the Big 12 as well as anyone, and he will be surrounded by a talented group in his senior season. The Cowboys should be better.

Glass half empty: If Nash isn't as good as advertised, the Cowboys could struggle.

Come mid-March: The Cowboys should play a quicker tempo, giving them a shot at reaching the NCAA Tournament.

7. Kansas State

Coach: Frank Martin, 95-43 in four seasons

2010-11: 23-11, 10-6 Big 12, NCAA third round

Star power: F Rodney McGruder (11.1 points, 5.9 rebounds), Jamar Samuels (8.5 points, 5.4 rebounds), Will Spradling (6.4 points, 1.6 rebounds).

Remember this name: G Angel Rodriguez. Martin says the freshman guard resembles former star guard Denis Clemente.

Glass half full: K-State will be deeper and more athletic. That will allow Martin to coach a more aggressive, up-tempo style that could feature a full-court press. Players like the new system.

Glass half empty: The Wildcats relied so heavily on Jacob Pullen a year ago that is impossible to predict how they will fare without him. Each of K-State's six newcomers will be called upon.

Come mid-March: This team should resemble the 2008-09 squad, which had to move on from the losses of Michael Beasley and Bill Walker. The Wildcats made a push for the NCAA Tournament that year, but ended up in the NIT. This group will be a bubble team, too.

8. Iowa State

Coach: Fred Hoiberg, 16-16 in one season

2010-11: 16-16, 3-13 Big 12

Star power: G Scott Christopherson (13.7 points, 3.1 rebounds), F Melvin Ejim (10.3 points, 6.7 rebounds), G Chris Allen (transfer).

Remember this name: Chris Babb, a Penn State transfer, should be one of Iowa State's top shooters.

Glass half full: Hoiberg should only improve as a coach, and he welcomes in four hand-selected transfers. Iowa State should be a much improved team and tough to beat at home.

Glass half empty: It could be difficult to introduce eight new players to the mix.

Come mid-March: Don't be surprised if the Cyclones push for a .500 record in Big 12 play or qualify for the NIT.

9. Oklahoma

Coach: Lon Kruger, first season

2010-11: 14-18, 5-11 Big 12

Star power: F Andrew Fitzgerald (12.6 points, 5.0 rebounds), G Cameron Clark (9.3 points, 4.5 rebounds), G Steven Pledger (10.9 points, 2.1 rebounds).

Remember this name: Romero Osby, a Mississippi State transfer, should help inside.

Glass half full: With a new coach and new players, excitement could build with a few big wins.

Glass half empty: As a coach, Kruger is a big upgrade from Jeff Capel. But Capel left the talent cupboard pretty bare. Kruger will have his work cut out for him in his first season.

Come mid-March: Kruger will get Oklahoma to the NCAA Tournament in time, but not this time.

10. Texas Tech

Coach: Billy Gillispie, first season

2010-11: 13-19, 5-11 Big 12

Star power: C Robert Lewandowski (8.5 points, 4.8 rebounds), F Jaye Crockett (4.8 points, 3.0 rebounds), G Javarez Willis (3.6 points, 0.9 rebounds)

Remember this name: Ty Nurse, a junior college transfer, should start at point guard.

Glass half full: It shouldn't be hard to top last season's 13-win campaign.

Glass half empty: The Big 12's new round-robin schedule is not conducive to building confidence and picking up wins.

Come mid-March: Texas Tech shouldn't be thinking about the postseason while it is in rebuilding mode.

—Kellis Robinett

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