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BIG 12 CONFERENCE
Sprint Center, Kansas City, Missouri
March 8-11


KANSAS
Record: 28-3, 16-2

Another season and another regular season title for the Jayhawks. In addition to that, they've won seven of the last 11 Big 12 tournaments. However, this year has been a bit different for KU as it seems like almost every win has come down to the wire. They may be the best team, but can they keep escaping, especially on three-straight days? To help, the Jayhawks will have the home crowd playing in Kansas City.

To get there, the route is clear. They've had trouble with TCU, but the Horned Frogs are really struggling. Beating Iowa State/OK State will be a bit more difficult given that the Cyclones recently beat KU in Lawrence. All that said, it will be hard to go against the Jayhawks with most of the crowd there supporting them. They continue to find ways to win with one of the best backcourts in the nation.

WEST VIRGINIA
Record: 24-7, 12-6

The Mountaineers have been inconsistent this season and haven't shown up in every game, but still managed the 2-seed. They should make it just fine to the semis, but WVU split with both Baylor and K State this season. West Virginia has had good teams in recent seasons, but their brand of basketball hasn't worked in this tournament with short rest against opponents that have experience against the press.


BAYLOR
Record: 25-6, 12-6

At one time, the Bears looked headed for a 1-seed in the NCAA tournament, but their struggles began to show in February. If they can make a run in this tourney by getting past Kansas State and West Virginia, those 1-seed discussions may start to brew up again, and more so if it beat Kansas in the title game. On the other end of that, Baylor split with K State this season and the Wildcats are in a must-win situation.

IOWA STATE
Record: 20-10, 12-6

The Cyclones are in the dreaded 4/5-spot for this tournament, which means you never get a truly favorable game. They'll face an OK State team they already swept this season, so that's good, but then have to take on Kansas. Iowa State won the 2014 and 2015 Big 12 tourneys and had to beat Kansas both times. The Cyclones have the talent to do that again, but their depth could come into question, especially if they make it to the championship.

OKLAHOMA STATE
Record: 20-11, 9-9

The Cowboys have had a good season, but get an Iowa State team that's playing well and already swept them this season. And even if OK State won its first game, would then have to take on Kansas, who just beat them in Stillwater. Jawun Evans is one of the best players in the conference, but he won't be enough to get this team to the title game.

KANSAS STATE
Record: 19-12, 8-10

K State may be the only Big 12 team that's truly on the NCAA tournament bubble. The Wildcats have won their last two games, but beating Baylor on a neutral floor would do wonders for their March Madness prospects. To help, Kansas State will have a slight edge as this tourney is in Kansas City, so they should have the fan support. These teams split in the regular season with K State winning most recently in Waco. But even if they can beat Baylor, it'll be hard to see them taking down West Virginia the next day.

Kansas is obviously the team to back, but Iowa State has the better value and doesn't have to play an extra game like in other conference tournaments. The bottom of the bracket is a toss up, but the value could be on Kansas State, who has looked great the last two games and already has good road wins this season. This is one of few tournaments that no one would be surprised if any of six teams won. The Jayhawks have been hard to trust against the spread this season and will be hard to trust in the Big 12 tournament, at least as a major favorite.

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