Holy cow, another roundtable! This one is just us Big 12 guys, hosted by Oklahoma's Crimson and Cream Machine.
There has been lots of talk this pre-season about scheduling. Colorado has arguably the strongest schedule but who do you think has the weakest and which cream puff on your team's schedule do you wish wasn't there?
ESPN's Tim Griffin breaks down the Big 12 schedules, stating that Iowa State and Missouri are the easiest this season, but I’m taking that the heart of this question is really about the non-conference schedule, not the full season.
The worst non-conference slate is Texas Tech with two Division IAA teams in Eastern Washington and Massachusetts, although Seth at Double T Nation points out they’re highly ranked IAA teams. Obviously what can we take from this is that next to no one wants to go to Lubbock.
Nebraska starts with five home games, three against weak teams, and then the next two against Virginia Tech and Missouri. It’s a schedule made for getting your crap back together early, so I’m not sure I would remove anyone this season, even though the schedule rather sucks.
If you had a gun to my head, I’d say New Mexico State. That’s the game you take the kids to because it’ll be over by half. If anyone is looking to get rid of their tickets, let me know - like I said - I’ll take the kids.
As a whole the Big 12 has the best quarterbacks in the country. Make a case for your quarterback being one of the conference's top signal callers and tell us which other conference quarterback you would pick to replace him if you had to.
You can’t make the case for Joe Ganz being one of the best because there are so many other good quarterbacks and Joe Ganz doesn’t have the track record that the others do. He has some great records, but, unfortunately they’re worthless.
I would take Chase Daniel, but it bugs me when a guy starting talking about himself as a legend when he hasn’t accomplished anything meaningful yet. If he was being serious, it means that he has filled himself with crap, and being that full of crap, he’ll have a hard time keeping his head up, so he’ll be throwing more interceptions. Plus he’s liable to be much slower this season and will probably get injured, so he’s out.
Sam Bradford is going to suffer from sophomoritis. Graham Harrell is a product of his system. Colt McCoy will have a better season this year, but it’s tough to talk him up because of the season he had last year. Josh Freeman got fatter, slower, and a big head, so he’ll get run down and squished like Daniel.
By process of elimination, I guess I’m getting down to Todd Reesing or maybe Stephen McGhee from Texas A&M. Reesing is a short guy at 5’10", doesn’t get the press that some of the others do, but that’s not what makes a winner. He’ll have a good season again this year. Still, Reesing can’t run over people, and there’s something about a quarterback that can run like a fullback that I like.
I guess I’d have to go with Stephen McGee. Someone needs to rescue him from Mike Sherman. McGee is tough. He’s gritty, but doesn’t get the buzz of the others because he had his coach pull one of the stupidest "Please Fire Me" moves in recent memory.
Okay, seriously, is there a bad returning Big 12 quarterback this season? Is there a bad choice here?
Going into the season which unit for your team are you most confident in, offense or defense?
Nebraska’s problems in 2007 on defense are well-documented. While Bo Pelini is a defensive-minded guy, he is not a miracle worker, so it will take more than one season to turn it around. Until I see them turn at least one quarterback into a sandwich, I have zero confidence in our defense.
That obviously leaves the offense. The offensive line will do well this season, we’ll re-establish the running game, we’ll control the ball and in doing so will keep fast-paced offenses off the field.
The thing is - on our offense we have a fair number of proven performers, i.e. Joe Ganz, Matt Slauson, Marlon Lucky. On defense, we have nothing proven. Lots of hope and potential, but nothing I’d bet on.
Who is the new guy on you squad that will be a household name among your fan base before the season ends?
Armando Murillo because I like saying his name. Started 12 games last year, so he’s not exactly new, though. Roy Helu, Jr. will have a stand out season. He’s not exactly new, either, though, is he?
Let’s go with Curenski Gilleylen, redshirt freshman receiver. His name is not easy to say - if you say his last name like "Gilligan" you’re close. He is fast and smart, and he can help the offense go.
Prediction time! Tell us how the north and south divisions will wind up.
Notice that I am still hedging my bets on Missouri/Nebraska. How utterly gutless of me, eh? Still, I want to see us play a game before I make a decision. That’s not too much to ask is it?
2. Texas Tech
4. Oklahoma State
5. Texas A&M
NORTH ----> If Missouri wins in Lincoln
5. Kansas State
6. Iowa State
NORTH----> If Missouri loses in Lincoln
4. Kansas State
6. Iowa State