IRVING, Texas (AP) -Oklahoma is the preseason favorite for the first time in the Big 12 coaches poll, and defending national champion Kansas was picked third along with Baylor.
Only six points separated the top four teams in the poll released Tuesday, led by the Sooners with 109 points and three first-place votes. Second-place Texas had the most first-place votes with four and tallied 107 points.
Kansas, which beat Memphis 75-68 in overtime for the school's first national championship since 1988, had 103 points along with Baylor, which had two first-place votes.
The Sooners and Longhorns return four starters apiece, although Texas' loss was a big one - point guard D.J. Augustin. He left school two years early and was the ninth pick in the NBA draft after leading the Longhorns to the regional finals, where they lost to Memphis.
rtime against Memphis. Junior guard Sherron Collins and sophomore center Cole Aldrich will be joined by another highly rated recruiting class.
The Bears are coming off their first NCAA tournament appearance since 1988 and have never made back-to-back trips. Their highest previous spot in the preseason poll was No. 7 in 2006-07.
M, Oklahoma State and Missouri were picked fifth, sixth and seventh. The remainder of the poll was Kansas State at No. 8, followed by the Nebraska, Texas Tech, Iowa State and Colorado.
The first Big 12 teams start the regular season Nov. 14. Conference play starts Jan. 10.
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