Welcome to the HCS Big 12 mailbag. This mailbag is for all you football junkies out there who root for a Big 12 school who not only have questions about your team, but other teams in the conference as well. So, join me, grab a cold brew or your favorite drink and relax as I answer all your Big 12 questions in my mailbag. For those interested, I will send out a tweet (@Derekduke25) every Monday at noon until last call (No, not 2 AM) at 8 PM CT for you to send in your questions to be answered every Tuesday right here at Heartland College Sports.
I will pick the best question for each mailbag and label it as my question of the week. The winner gets a free HCS Koozie to keep your beer cold (Unless you like it warm, but that’s just plain wrong). It was busy question day which tells me that this mailbag is working harder than me at my day job. Unlike the “Big 12 blog” over at ESPN (I say that loosely because one story a month is a tragedy), we here at HCS are determined to give you the best Big 12 coverage on the planet. I want to thank each one of you who submitted a question this week and for those reading, I am glad you could join me. On to the mailbag!
@RPTexan asks: If you were elected CFB Czar, what rules would you implement/do away with during your first few weeks on the job?
Duke: There would be so much I would do Robert that I could go on for weeks and still keep going so I will keep it short.
1. The CFB Playoff will get expanded to eight teams. Five conference champions, two at-large bids and the best group of five team go in.
2. I would make ALL schools sell alcohol at sporting events. That one was pretty easy.
3. Allow players to profit off their own name for crying out loud. Meaning, if someone pays you for an autograph, you can keep the money and NOT get into trouble. Maybe even let athletes get a monthly allowance and it is equal for everyone.
4. CHANGE THE DAMN TRANSFER RULES OR FOLLOW THEM BY THE RULES. It is insane how some kids get denied immediate eligibility for going to a different school that’s close to home due to family issues/emergencies while others are granted immediate eligibility because they are a five-star quarterback who couldn’t win the damn job at their previous school.
5. I want to sit in on all CFB Playoff Committee meetings to see who the actual idiots are in the room.
@ia11stat asks: Who was drafted too high and too low from the Big 12?
Duke: Not to totally throw a player under the bus but I felt like TCU DE L.J. Collier was maybe a bit high for me. L.J. got drafted by the Seattle Seahawks with the 29th pick in the first round. To me, he probably was a Day Two guy and Seattle probably could have waited to get him if they really wanted to. However, congrats to L.J. for getting that first round MONEY! Now, I have two players that I would say were too low for me. First, it was WVU QB Will Grier. I thought that Will Grier was probably the second-best quarterback in this draft and Carolina was able to take him with the 100th overall pick in round three. Again, I like Grier over both Daniel Jones and Dwayne Haskins who both went in the first round. Lastly, was Hakeem Butler. HOW IN THE HELL DID HE SLIP ALL THE WAY TO THE FOURTH ROUND??? I remember talking with some folks on our new forum about that and I don’t think anyone saw that coming. But give credit to the Arizona Cardinals for getting a gem in the fourth round.
@u_tfan asks: How many conference games does Les Miles win in his first year?
Duke: I think I answered this question or a similar question a few weeks back but I will go ahead and say it again. I think Kansas will go either 3-9 or 2-10 this season and if I had to say, I think they will either win one conference games or none at all. The only team that I could see them possibly beating is Kansas State in the Sunflower Showdown. They get the Wildcats in Lawrence this season and they may have enough to pull off the upset. Right now, I will say that Kansas wins one conference game this season, and that’s only if you put a gun to my head.
@jeffstraight76 asks: How bad of a statement is it for the league that WVU finished second behind Oklahoma in amount of players drafted? Surely Texas should be in that spot, no?
Duke: Texas should always be one or two, but outside of last season, what has Texas done in the three previous years? From 2015-2017, Texas went 17-20 which is absolutely terrible for Texas standards. So honestly, it didn’t surprise me that much this season. I think we won’t see a wave of players drafted from Texas until next season and beyond. I saw a crazy stat yesterday regarding draft numbers: LSU and Texas combined for five total draft picks (LSU had 3, Texas had 2), yet both schools managed to win ten games last season. Not to go all “SEC” here but look at some of those SEC schools that have a bunch of draft picks. Ole Miss had 6 and Texas A&M had 7 players drafted this past weekend. Do you know which bowl games those two schools ended up in? Ole Miss went 5-7 and didn’t even go to a bowl game while Texas A&M played in the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl. Now as for West Virginia, remember all the preseason hype last year? Many media folks had them either playing in the conference title game or winning the conference last year. That team was talented but ultimately fell short of their goal. I wasn’t that surprised at all considering the expectations everyone had for that team last season. They had some DUDES.
@O77Line asks: Which Big 12 players that didn’t get drafted do you think should have been drafted? For me, it was David Sills. I had him going in the first three rounds.
Duke: The Patriots already let Clemson WR Hunter Renfrow get away so HOW IN THE HELL DID THEY LET DAVID SILLS GO UNDRAFTED? Sills would have been perfect in New England but instead he signed a deal with the Buffalo Bills after the draft was over. I didn’t have Sills going in the first three rounds but he should have been a day three pick somewhere between rounds 5-7. Also, another guy was Texas Tech WR Antoine Wesley. Just like Sills, he probably should have went somewhere between rounds 5-7. There were some notable Big 12 players that went undrafted but these two were at the top of my list.
@ia11stat asks: Who will be the next Big 12 coach that gets fired?
Duke: C’mon man the season hasn’t even started yet! Honestly, the only ones who I feel like who would be gone in a few years are one of the new hires. So that means either Matt Wells (Texas Tech), Chris Klieman (K-State), Neal Brown (WVU) or Les Miles (Kansas) would be my guess. Now, as for which one of them goes first? I have no earthly idea because your guess is as good as mine at this point and time. I need to see how these coaches perform in their first season and then I would be able to get a good gauge on what these coaches are like under pressure. But as for now, it is a total crapshoot.
@Doc_Texas asks: What is your dream BBQ plate?
Duke: For those who don’t know, BBQ is by far my favorite food. When I travel for the website to cover events, I am already planning which BBQ joint I am going to next. I have had some great BBQ over the years but I am pretty simple when it comes to my plate. Give me brisket (No sauce of course because just like a good steak, good brisket doesn’t need sauce) and beef sausage. Those are my favorite two meats and living in Texas, those two are a MUST. As for my sides, I like mac and cheese and whatever style of beans because I like pinto, ranch, etc. Then of course, I would wash it all down with a big red and banana pudding for dessert.
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