Baylor: Rico Gathers
Line: 11.2 points per game, 12.6 rebounds per game
The 275-pound junior has been the most impressive performer for the Baylor Bears so far this season. Gathers has a league-best 12 double-double games in 24 games of action at the forward position. His dominance on the glass and aggression inside the paint has helped Baylor stay in each Big 12 matchup.
Iowa State: Georges Niang
Line: 14.9 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 3.5 assists per game
Niang has helped lead the Cyclones to an impressive 17-6 record, including a perfect 13-0 home stance in Ames, Iowa. The 6-foot-8 junior is a proficient shooter and uses his body to run through the paint but still has the athleticism to hit three pointers for Iowa State.
Kansas: Frank Mason III
Line: 12.5 PPG, 4.3 APG
The sophomore guard has taken charge of his relatively young team and manages the ball for the defending Big 12 champions. Mason is fast and isn’t afraid to take a shot, but he also dished assists to his other teammates. With Mason leading the way, the Jayhawks are in contention for yet another Big 12 title this season.
Kansas State: Marcus Foster
Line: 14 PPG, 41.9 percent shooting
Foster is a talented sophomore guard who has kept Kansas State above water for a majority of the season. The Wildcats haven’t had great success without Foster, and they have to find a way right now. Both Foster and teammate Malek Harris have been suspended for violating team rules, and there is no word on when either player will return.
Oklahoma: Buddy Hield
Line: 17.6 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 44.6 percent shooting
Hield has been a consistent contributor for the Oklahoma Sooners since last season. The star junior has cut down on personal fouls committed and turnovers per game for a cleaner game and posts an offensive threat from beyond the arc.
Oklahoma State: Phil Forte III
Line: 17 PPG, 2.1 steals per game, 41.7 three-point percentage
Forte has stepped up as one of the leaders for Oklahoma State, taking charge after the departure of former guard Marcus Smart. The 5-foot-11 junior has been able to change momentum of a game with the accuracy of his shot, and he has guided the Cowboys to a four-game winning streak, including wins over No. 8 Kansas and No. 16 Baylor.
TCU: Kyan Anderson
Line: 13.1 PPG, 4.0 APG
Anderson is the best player on TCU’s roster right now, but the Horned Frogs have been unable to capitalize on his ability since starting Big 12 play. The team will need to include the Fort Worth native in order to have a chance at making the postseason. They’ll need a lot of help though; the Horned Frogs are 1-9 in conference play but still maintain a 14-9 overall record.
Texas: Isaiah Taylor
Line: 14.5 PPG, 4.2 APG, 41.1 percent shooting
The sophomore guard may have had an early season injury, but he has come out and had impressive performances in conference play to make up for it. He only sits out for nine minutes or less during game action, and he has helped balance the diverse guard position for Texas.
Texas Tech: Devaugntah Williams
Line: 10.5 PPG, 39.1 percent shooting
The Red Raiders have had a rough season, but Williams has helped the team play in some really competitive games. In their most impressive win, the 200-lb junior put up 22 points, six rebounds, and two assists in Texas Tech’s 78-73 win over Iowa State on Jan. 24. Since then, the Red Raiders have struggled and have plummeted down the conference rankings.
West Virginia: Juwan Staten
Line: 14.4 PPG, 40.9 percent shooting
The standout senior was named the Big 12 Preseason Player of the Year before the start of the season, and he’s guided the team to an impressive 18-5 record. Staten is consistent in providing production. Most recently, Staten had a disappointing performance against then-No. 19 Baylor in the team’s worst home loss since 1988.