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The Big 12’s NFL Draft Showing is Strong, Even Without Oklahoma and Texas

NCAA Football: Texas at Iowa State

The 2023 NFL Draft wrapped up on Saturday, and it’s always an opportunity to look back and evaluate conference strength, based on what the NFL teams perceived to be the conferences, and teams, with the most talent for the next level.

Overall, the Big 12 had a strong showing with 30 NFL Draft picks, which is the third-most picks when looking at it from a per team average. However, one talking point that might be out there is the notion that once OU and Texas leave the Big 12, this conference will be a glorified Group of 5.


But the numbers would not come close to backing that up.

RedditCFB actually broke down the draft pick numbers based on future conference moves, and the Big 12 went from 30 draft picks to… 30 draft picks.

Yes, they’re losing two teams in Oklahoma and Texas and gaining four in BYU, Houston, Cincinnati and UCF, but when you also consider those four programs have not been playing Power 5 football, and will be starting this year, the future looks bright. These four programs will only continue to recruit at an even higher level, meaning they should be pumping out more NFL talent in the years to come than they have been in previous years.


Of the new teams, Houston led with four NFL Draft picks, BYU and Cincinnati each had three, while UCF had zero.

As for Oklahoma and Texas, they produced five draft picks each, which was tied for the second-most in the Big 12, behind TCU, who had eight NFL Draft picks this weekend, leading the Big 12.

Here’s a breakdown of how many players were selected in the NFL Draft from each Big 12 school.

  • TCU — 8 
  • Oklahoma — 5 
  • Texas — 5 
  • Kansas State — 4 
  • Oklahoma State — 2
  • Iowa State — 3 
  • Baylor — 1  
  • West Virginia — 1 
  • Texas Tech — 1 
  • Kansas – 0

The Horned Frogs were led by Quentin Johnston, who was picked in the first round by the Los Angeles Chargers, in what could be a lethal wide receiver corps with Keenan Allen and Mike Williams.

Texas Tech only had one player chosen, but it was the highest-selected player from the conference as linebacker Tyree Wilson went No. 7 to the Las Vegas Raiders.

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