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. This week’s mailbag was so full, I had to break it up into two parts. So, if you don’t see your question in this mailbag, look for it on tomorrow’s part two. Also, tonight’s drink of choice? A Dallas Blonde by Deep Ellum Brewing Company. It is one of my personal favorite beers and I highly recommend it and it probably taste 1,000 times better after some yard work but then again, just about any beer does. I apologize for the mailbag being a day late, but I was out of town for a few days back now I am back at it.
@KBehr68 asks: Are you excited as I am to see Dylan Soehner, Iowa State’s 6’7 270 F position (FB/TE) starter this year?
Duke: I am going to be straight up honest with you, I had to look this guy up because I had no idea who in the heck he is. So I guess it would be impossible for me to get excited over somebody I am not familiar with? Is this guy actually going to start? He plays great special teams from what I have read, but Chase Allen and Charlie Kolar are the first two tight ends that come to mind when talking about Iowa State tight ends right now. Dylan has had one catch in his Iowa State career and while his physical stats look great, I’ve got to see something on the field that catches my eye. Otherwise, you just get lost in the mix like everyone else. I am not saying that Dylan can’t be good just because he is a bit of an unknown, and hey, I am just some wanna-be blogger drinking beer answering football questions. Cheers!
@SethlDow asks: Find the worst name on each Big 12 roster and rank them for us.
Duke: Before I begin, I want to say that I pray that no one who I mentioned in this list reads this because they could probably kick my ass but like I always say, I am a man of the people. HOWEVER, I don’t know even how to possibly rank these, but I will give you a list. So here goes nothing.
Texas: Kartik Akkihal
Baylor: Davis Baucum
TCU: Omega Stallworth
TTU: Quentin Yontz
Oklahoma: Reeves Mundschau
OSU: Sione Asi
KSU: Maxwell Poduska
KU: Dru Prox
ISU: Benjamin Dunkleberger
WVU: Zach Sandwisch
Even though I didn’t rank them, those bottom two are by far my favorites.
@cychas87 asks: La’Michael Pettaway, will he be an impact player for Iowa State? So so stats at Arkansas but maybe not a passing offense?
Duke: I talked about La’Michael last week in the mailbag, but I will say this about Arkansas last season. They went 2-10, finished at the bottom of their division and to lightly put it, it was a shit show down in Fayetteville. La’Michael was their leading receiver and I feel like he could be an even better player in Ames, especially when you pair him up with a quarterback like Brock Purdy who can throw the football. From Day One on campus, La’Michael will be glad he had a change of scenery. At 6’2, 220 pounds, La’Michael can be that big wide out that Iowa State has had over the past few seasons because right now, there isn’t a ton of size at the wide out position when it comes to guys who will likely play this season. So, without a doubt in my mind, Pettaway is a HUGE addition for the Cyclones, and he will be a big factor this upcoming season.
@Cyclones_B12c asks: What breakout player from last season do you think is most likely to slump this year a little?
Duke: Tough question here but I think this is interesting. Quarterback would be an obvious guess here, but I don’t see any of the breakout quarterbacks last season slumping this year. So, I am going with Oklahoma tight end Grant Calcaterra. He had 26 grabs for 396 yards and 6 touchdowns last season. Plus, he caught that game sealing touchdown pass against Texas to win the Big 12 title right in front of me which was bad ass if you ask me. Anyways, with so many talented true freshman receivers coming in (as well as superstar CeeDee Lamb), I feel like he could get lost in the shuffle a bit. Oklahoma has used the tight end position very well over the last few seasons and while he may have a similar type season this season, I feel like he may not live up to expectations for the upcoming year. Again, it has nothing really to do with his talent but just having so many weapons and only one football could hurt his potential production.
@maxdijion asks: Rank the Big 12 Game Day environments of the stadiums/teams that you have been to. Secondarily, name one game that you can’t wait to see this year.
Duke: First off, I am not falling for that trap as far as ranking the environments. They are all great and until I visit all ten stadiums, I will keep that to myself. Even when I do visit all of them and rank them, I might get threatened by some of the fan bases. As far as the game I want to see in person and not on TV, it is Texas at Iowa State. I plan on traveling to cover that game and it has been circled on my calendar for months now. Ok, maybe not but you get my drift.
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