Kansas and Texas A&M will share the designation of being the preseason favorite to win the 2011-12 Big 12 men's basketball crown in a vote of the league's head coaches. It marks the second time in conference history (KU, Oklahoma State in 2004-05) that two squads tied for the top spot in the preseason poll. Coaches are not allowed to vote for their own teams.
The Jayhawks will be led by senior guard Tyshawn Taylor and junior forward Thomas Robinson. Kansas has eight lettermen back from a squad that advanced to the NCAA regional semifinals for the 27th time in 2011. The Jayhawks have won or shared each of the last seven Big 12 regular season championships.
Texas A&M is in the No. 1 spot for the first time, with its highest previous preseason ranking coming in 2006-07 (second). New head coach Billy Kennedy welcomes back 10 lettermen and three starters in his first season in College Station. The Aggies are coming off their sixth straight NCAA appearance - one of 12 schools nationally and three in the Big 12 (KU, UT) that have accomplished the feat.
Baylor, Missouri and Texas were next in the predictions at third, fourth and fifth. BU and MU received first-place votes, marking just the second time in Big 12 history (2008-09) that four different teams received first-place recognition. Kansas State, Oklahoma State and Iowa State were next, while Oklahoma and Texas Tech tied for ninth to round out the poll.
The Big 12 season gets underway on Wednesday, November 9 as Texas A&M hosts Liberty with every squad opening the following weekend. Big 12 Conference action starts on Monday, January 2 - matching the earliest start in league history (1998-99). Big 12 teams will face a full double round-robin schedule in conference play for the first time in league history this season.
The Big 12 will hold its preseason media day on Thursday, October 20 at Sprint Center in Kansas City - site of the 2012 Phillips 66 Big 12 Men's Basketball Championship. Live coverage will be available at Big12Sports.com.
2011-12 BIG 12 MEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON POLL
|Team (First-place Votes)||Points|
|Texas A&M (2)||73|
Nine points were awarded for first place, eight for second, etc.
Coaches were not permitted to vote for their own team.
BIG 12 PRESEASON POLL HISTORY
|Preseason Selection (actual finish)||Big 12 Champion (preseason selection)|
|2010-11||Kansas State (Tie-3rd)||Kansas (2nd)|
|2009-10||Kansas (1st)||Kansas (1st)|
|2008-09||Oklahoma (2nd)||Kansas (3rd)|
|2007-08||Kansas (Tie-1st)||Texas (2nd)|
|2006-07||Kansas (1st)||Kansas (1st)|
|2005-06||Texas (Tie-1st)||Kansas (3rd)|
|2004-05||Kansas (Tie-1st)||Kansas (Tie-1st)|
|Oklahoma State (3rd)||Oklahoma (4th)|
|2003-04||Missouri (Tie-5th)||Oklahoma State (5th)|
|2002-03||Kansas (1st)||Kansas (1st)|
|2001-02||Kansas (1st)||Kansas (1st)|
|2000-01||Kansas (Tie-2nd)||Iowa State (4th)|
|1999-2000||Kansas (5th)||Iowa State (6th)|
|1998-99||Oklahoma State (Tie-5th)||Texas (5th)|
|1997-98||Kansas (1st)||Kansas (1st)|
|1996-97||No Coaches Poll||Kansas|