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Big 12 Mailbag: Over/Unders, Bowl talk, and more!

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It’s the offseason, so that’s the perfect time for the inaugural HCS Mailbag! We hope to keep this rolling into 2018 and make it a weekly staple on Heartland College Sports. Please tweet us your questions, or we will make a post on Facebook where you can put your questions up, or email me directly at [email protected].

Here we go!


Answer: I’d put it at 6. The Big 12 is going to be totally up in the air next season. OU turns over it’s Heisman star and a few others, TCU loses its seniors, Oklahoma State’s stars are moving on. It’s way too early to even get into Big 12 favorites, but I know it’s going to be another year with a balanced and deep conference. Four Big 12 teams went 5-4 in conference play this year. I could very well see that again next year. With Texas having guys like Connor Williams, Holton Hill and DeShon Elliott leaving for the NFL Draft, plus another non-conference game against USC (but this one at home), and still no clear offensive identity, I think six is fair for the Longhorns.


Answer: I like the tongue-in-cheek on this question (at least I assume?). If Lamar Jackson comes back for the 2018 season (which he should), then he’s probably the Heisman favorite. I suppose the same could be said for Sam Darnold too, but I expect Darnold to go to the NFL. If David Montgomery rushes for 2,000 yards and 16 touchdowns, that would be a nice season, but remember this: Two years ago Alabama running back Derrick Henry won the Heisman Trophy and he had over 2,200 rushing yards and 28 rushing touchdowns. So, Montgomery might have to bump those touchdown numbers up to get a sniff of New York City ;-)


Answer: This is my dream. Nebraska and Arkansas into the Big 12. What needs to happen though? The apocalypse. Or maybe if Texas ever left the Big 12, Nebraska would consider coming back, but that’s it. No way the Huskers come back to the Big 12 with their tail between their legs by admitting they screwed up by leaving the conference. I don’t see it. And Arkansas? They love the SEC money and stability, so I don’t see it, but it would be a lot more fun and I think culturally, Arkansas would fit in very well with their former pals in the Southwest Conference.

As for Big 12 expansion, I don’t think the conference needs it, unless its some incredible situation like Nebraska and Arkansas. Adding Cincinnati or UCF or Tulsa or Memphis make no sense. They don’t add value to the TV packages at the moment. But I’ve said this before, if I had to expand I’d go SMU and Houston and just try to lock down the state of Texas for the Big 12 conference and try to keep the SEC and Big Ten from coming down to the Lone Star State as much as possible.


Answer: There are a couple of options, but I really believe it’s Texas Tech. The Red Raiders are bowling thanks to a minor miracle comeback against the Longhorns. If Kingsbury, who is returning in 2018, can beat USF, he’ll have some momentum going into the offseason for the first time in a while. He needs it and the program desperately needs it for the recruiting trail.

Answer: Sean Snyder???? Just kidding, K-State fans (at least some of you). I’d go with Texas defensive coordinator Todd Orlando. He was reportedly a finalist for the SMU job and he has a great track record of having successful defenses dating back to his work under Herman at Houston. Since he makes so much money in Austin, he won’t be easy to pry away (plus he’s made it very clear he’s extremely loyal to Tom Herman), but he’s still relatively young (45) and if teams keep calling, he will have the opportunity to run his own program sooner than later.

My others on this list would include TCU offensive coordinator Sonny Cumbie and West Virginia offensive coordinator Jake Spavital. But I don’t see either happening in the near future.

THANKS for everyone who participated in this week’s mailbag and already looking forward to next week! 

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