Coming into this season five Big 12 teams are ranked in the top 15 of the preseason poll, Oklahoma, Missouri, Texas, Texas Tech, and Kansas, and two of them, Oklahoma and Missouri, are legitimate title contenders.
If there was one position that the Big 12 is loaded at, it is the Quarterback position.
Returning starters this season are: Sam Bradford (Oklahoma), Chase Daniel (Missouri), Graham Harrell (Tech), Colt McCoy (Texas), Todd Reesing (Kansas), Josh Freeman (K-State), Zac Robinson (Okla. St.), Joe Ganz (Nebraska), Stephen McGee (A&M), and even Baylor has experience with former Miami (FL) QB Kirby Freeman.
That is 11 QB with at least a years worth of starting experience under their belt, best of any conference.
Last season five Big 12 teams were in the top 15 of scoring in the nation, Kansas (42.8), Oklahoma (42.3), Texas Tech (40.9), Missouri (39.9), and Texas (37.2). Those type of numbers gave Big 12 Defensive Coordinators nightmares last season, and this season shouldn't be any different.
I have tried to argue that the Big 12 for this season, and possibly this season alone could be better than the SEC. That argument is not one that is usually made because of the SEC's dominance over the past decade plus but of all the BCS conferences, the Big 12 has the best offense and if the defenses in the Big 12 can play at 3/4th the level of the SEC's, then this season should be the season that many think the Big 12 was the better conference.
- Missouri (12-0, 8-0 Big 12) - I already said in the Missouri preview that I think they will go unbeaten this regular season.
- Kansas (8-4, 5-3) - I see Kansas taking a step back this season but still having a better year than they are used to having.
- Colorado (7-5, 5-3) - Colorado is a team on the rise and if RB Darrell Scott is as good as advertised, they will be very dangerous.
- Nebraska (6-6,3-5) - Bo Pelini has the Huskers excited for the future and Marlon Lucky is a very good back but Pelini still has to work with Bill Callahan players. Pelini will bring the Huskers back in the next couple of years.
- Kansas St. (6-6, 2-6) - Coach Ron Prince's seat is getting a little warm in Manhattan but if QB Josh Freeman is as good as Prince says he is, their record might be better.
- Iowa St. (3-9, 0-8) - Iowa St. will continue to struggle until Coach Gene Chizik gets his players in there, thought the defense will be better than most think.
- Oklahoma (12-0, 8-0 Big 12) - I tried not to be a big homer on this but I just don't see anyone on their schedule that can beat them.
- Texas Tech (10-2, 6-2) - This is Tech's season to take the 2nd spot in the South. I think Tech will roll into the Texas game unbeaten but will drop that game and the Oklahoma game to finish 6-2.
- Texas (9-3, 5-3) - Texas will be good but not as good as they will be in 2009 when their young defense will be loaded and have a year of Will Muschamp's system under their belt.
- Oklahoma St. (6-6, 3-5) - Boone Pickins will not be happy with his investment as another sub .500 Big 12 season awaits the Cowboys. Mike Gundy is still a man but could be feel his seat warm if things don't improve.
- Texas A&M (6-6, 2-6) - Mike Sherman will look to return the Aggies back to prominance and at A&M it shouldn't be tough. This year though will be a rough go.
- Baylor (2-10, 1-7) - Art Briles will try and turn around a Baylor that hasn't won a conference title since 1994. It will be tough but being in the fertile recruting region of Dallas should help.
Oklahoma 35 Missouri 17
Teams Going Bowling
Oklahoma (National Championship)
Texas Tech (Cotton)
Colorado (Insight Bowl)
Oklahoma St. (Texas Bowl)