OU picked to win the Big 12

For the fifth straight season, the Sooners are expected to win the Big 12, according to the preseason media poll.

OU grabbed 19 of 32 first-place votes and to nudge out Oklahoma State for the top spot. The Cowboys received 12 first-place votes while Kansas State picked up the final first-place nod.

For the fifth time in the seven years since the Big 12 moved to 10 teams, OU has been picked to win this year’s league championship in a preseason media poll released by the conference office Thursday.

If Oklahoma follows through and wins the 2017 league title, it will mark the Sooners’ 11th Big 12 championship and third straight. No other school has won more than three total. Since OU’s first Big 12 title in 2000, no other program has won more than two.

The Sooners return 16 starters from last year’s team that finished 11-2 under former head coach Bob Stoops and was the first to go 9-0 in the Big 12 regular season. OU beat Auburn 35-19 in the Sugar Bowl and finished No. 3 in the Coaches Poll and No. 5 in the AP Top 25 Poll. Nine offensive starters are back for 2017, including Preseason Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year Baker Mayfield, who has finished in the top four of Heisman Trophy voting each of the last two years. OU, which also returns its entire starting offensive line, welcomes back seven defensive starters, not including punter and placekicker Austin Seibert.

The Big 12 will holds its first championship game since 2010 on Dec. 1 or 2 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The game will feature the top two finishers in the league standings.

Big 12 Football Preseason Poll

  1. Oklahoma (19) 303
  2. Oklahoma State (12) 294
  3. K-State (1) 231
  4. Texas 213
  5. TCU 202
  6. West Virginia 183
  7. Baylor 129
  8. Texas Tech 85
  9. Iowa State 83
  10. Kansas 37