Thursday, August 28, 2008

College Football 2008 Conference Preview: Big 12

Look for the Big 12 to be one of the top conferences in the nation.

Predicted Order of Finish:

North:
1. Missouri
The Tigers are loaded with 16 returning starters. Heisman candidate Chase Daniel is back at QB along with WR Jeremy Maclin, and TE Chase Coffman on offense. The defense should be superb and dominant as 10 starters return. Look for the secondary to be wheeling and dealing lead by ball-hawk DB Will Moore.

2. Kansas
KU surprised everybody after a big Orange Bowl win over Virginia Tech. QB Todd Reesing is back after proving the doubters wrong about his size. With 16 starters back there's no reason not to believe the Jayhawks won't compete for another national title. The WR unit will be strong with both of their leading WRs back. The defense should be stellar as both the D-Line and LB units are strong, they just need to improve the secondary after losing CB Aquib Talib.

3. Nebraska
I think the Huskers will be a little improved with new head coach Bo Pelini. Joe Ganz is a capable QB to help get the Huskers back on their feet. Marlon Lucky returns as RB and is one of the top RB in the Big 12. Four linemen return up-front. The defense should be interesting this season. The defensive front returns it's top 8, but they are very inexperienced at LB and in the secondary.

4. Colorado
Cody Hawkins put up some pretty good numbers last season but must decrease his INTs. Look for frosh RB Darrell Scott to carry the load. The Buffs have plenty of WRs, which are a vital part of their offense. The D-Line will be solid with both George Hypolite and Brandon Nicolas back.

5. Kansas State
KSU has been mediocre at best ever since winning the Big XII Championship back in 2003. QB Josh Freeman set a school record with 3,353 passing yards last season. He completed 63.3 percent of his passes with 18 touchdowns. The rest of the offense may struggle with inexperience and lack of depth at RB and WR, plus mediocre play at O-Line.

6. Iowa St.
ISU was horrendous last season and I doubt they will be much better. QB is a big question mark. RB Alex Robinson may be the lone bright spot on O. The defense lacked production in '07, expect the same in '08.

South:
1. Oklahoma
OU is no doubt one of the best teams in the country, but they do have a few question marks. After an amazing freshman season, QB Sam Bradford is back and looking for more. DeMarco Murray and Chris Brown are a phenomenal RB duo. The Sooners do not have a clear go-to WR but Juaquin Iglesias and Manuel Johnson should step up. The O & D Lines are both arguably the best in the country, this is what separates OU from a lot of teams. They may lack depth at LB and experience in the secondary, but up-front is what is going to get it done for OU.

2. Texas Tech
If Tech doesn't live up to it's 2008 hype, they may never win the Big 12 or make a BCS Bowl. This could be their year to wreck havoc in the Big 12. The Graham Harrell to Michael Crabtree connection might be the best in the country. Crabtree is easily the best WR out there. There's no doubt the offense can put up points and win them games, but they need the defense to step up and get them over the top. They have the experience, but it's just a matter of execution. I think they'll be fine.

3. Texas
Will this be a rebuilding year for Mack Brown and Co.? Or will they reload and use some of their young talent to their advantage? QB Colt McCoy is a good start after losing 5 key starters on offense. The O-Line could be a big key as well, lead by OT Cedric Dockery, a future NFL star. The defense may slow down the Horns after losing 7 starters though.

4. Oklahoma St.
The Offense should put up some points with it's spread attack. QB Zac Robinson established the single-season school record for total offense. The Cowboys have 3 veteran backs which should help after losing starter Dantell Savage. Soph. Dez Bryant is a stud at WR and could be All-Big 12 this season. The 'Boys' might have the best offensive line behind Oklahoma and Texas. They are pretty deep there which is another reason they could be a dangerous team. The front 7 need to find some replacements on D, but look for the secondary to be pretty good with 3 returners there.

5. Texas A&M
The offense has the potential to be very good, as long as they all stay healthy. This includes QB Stephen McGee and RBs Javorskie Lane and Mike Goodson. If the offensive line can produce, the Aggies could go a long way. The defense is average at best but they do have some depth to help fill some holes.

6. Baylor
Not much at QB with no depth and plenty of problems. The only positive on offense is 7 returning starters. Expect the defense to be pretty bad again with not much play makers around. Baylor will continue to be just a baseball school.

Big 12 Championship:
Missouri over Oklahoma

Offensive Player of the Year:
Chase Daniel, QB- Missouri

Defensive Player of the Year:
Will Moore, FS- Missouri

Freshman of the Year:
Darrell Scott, RB- Colorado

Coach of the Year:
Mike Leach- Texas Tech

Top 3 Games:
Texas at Oklahoma- Oct. 11

Texas at Texas Tech- Nov. 1

Texas Tech at Oklahoma- Nov. 22

4 comments:

Ed The Sports Fan said...

You know i'm about to get on you right? You talking about the Big 12, that's the hood i'm from...

Ok...I can live with Chase Daniel being player of the year, but defensively? William Moore, eh no. Try Auston English and Nic Harris to take home that honor from Oklahoma. I DEFINITELY CANNOT let Mizzou over Oklahoma in the Big 12 Championship stand either. Its not happening. Also I think Kansas falls lower than #2 in the North with the super easy schedule they had last year and Nebraska, Colorado, and K-State much improved they're in trouble.

This was a good article, but i had to put in on it because, well like Kanye says..."I think its time for me to go hard its the hood i'm from!"

-Ed.
www.edthesportsfan.com

SoulOnIce said...

Sorry, brother. From someone who HATES the Texas Longhorns, there's no way they finish the season below Texas Tech. Tech will score points, because that's what they do, but they won't stop anybody. Crabtree (Dallas, Texas) is my dark horse for Player of the Year, but if Chase gets it, it's all good, because he's from the Metroplex, too.

That was the only one that I had to go crazy about. Besides that, OU will prevail in the XII title game...yet again. Good stuff, homie.

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