Ranking the Big 12's top 25 players: No. 6

Our official list of the Big 12's top 25 players entering the 2012 season marches on. Here's more on my criteria for who makes it, who doesn't and who lands where.

The official list is locked away in a vault in an undisclosed location, but we'll be revealing one player a day leading up to the season.

We're now in the top 10, so these picks might get a little ugly. Got beef? Let's squash it. Send your complaints here.

Next up on the list:

No. 6: Joseph Randle, RB, Oklahoma State

2011 numbers: Carried the ball 208 times for 1,216 yards and 24 touchdowns. Caught 43 passes for 266 yards and two touchdowns.

Most recent ranking: Randle was ranked No. 18 in our postseason list of the Big 12's top 25 players.

Making the case for Randle: Randle showed big potential in a supporting role back in 2010, but he returned with a huge sophomore season. Now, he's the Big 12's leading returning rusher and should be a constant for one of the league's top offenses.

Randle was used mostly in the passing game as a freshman, making a handful of big plays, and that's still a big part of his arsenal, but I don't know if anyone expected Randle to have the kind of breakout season he did in 2011. He's deceptively strong for his size at 6-foot-1, 200 pounds, and plays a lot bigger.

Now, Oklahoma State needs him to be even better than he was last year. My money is on him answering the bell. The Wichita, Kan. native averaged nearly six yards a carry last year, and he can probably count on toting the ball more than 208 times this year. He topped 120 yards in his first three games of 2011 and ran for more than 150 yards in wins over top 25 opponents and 10-win teams Oklahoma and Baylor. Both were blowout wins. The Baylor win featured a career-high four touchdowns, too.

The rest of the list: