Welcome to the HCS Big 12 Football mailbag. This mailbag is for all you football junkies out there who root for a Big 12 school, and 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. I want to thank each one of you who submitted a question this week and for tonight’s drink of choice? You’ll just have to see for yourself.
Duke: If you are going by the current Big 12 standings, Houston has the worst record. They played TCU last Saturday to open up conference play and got blown out. Everyone else in the Big 12 is at 0-0 or 1-0 except for Houston. But if you are asking who I think will finish last when the season ends my answer probably wouldn’t change. The Cougars have an awful defense and their offense looked stuck in the mud against TCU. In fact, their offense didn’t even score a touchdown in that game.
What makes matters worse is having to listen to Dana Holgorsen in the postgame. The excuses are getting old and while Houston is putting money into the football program, fans are getting nothing in return right now.
Duke: The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. If Iowa State can’t run the football against teams like Northern Iowa or Ohio what would lead one to believe they can against Big 12 competition? The offensive line has proven to be a weak point and I would be willing to bet that the Cyclones finish with the worst rushing offense in the Big 12 once again.
I said on the Heartland After Dark Podcast (shameless plug) that the offense needs to change things up. They need to find ways to get the ball to guys like Jaylin Noel, Jayden Higgins, and Benjamin Brahmer to help out Rocco Becht. The short passing game and screen game can do wonders for an offense that struggles to run the football. Hopefully, we can see a new wrinkle or two in the offense moving forward.
Duke: I would say Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas State are locks to win at least eight games this season. I feel good about all three teams right now and they all will be in the hunt for a Big 12 title. Maybe you can throw Texas Tech in that mix, but I just don’t feel great about any other Big 12 team after the first three weeks. Of course, things can change and maybe they will, but until then I would stick with those three.
Duke: I am not sure if they have been fun to watch all season long because that home opener against Sam Houston was tough to get through. However, their win against Arkansas on the road was epic. They were down 14-0 in the first four minutes of the game, and they just kept battling back all game long. And that catch by Chase Roberts was ridiculous to give them the lead in the fourth quarter. Now that I think about it, maybe they are the most interesting team to watch in the Big 12.
Duke: Texas Tech is in a weird place, and I haven’t quite figured them out just yet. The defense has been good enough to win games, but the offense has been an area of concern for me. The offensive line is still a bit shaky, and I would like to see them run the football more. Plus, Tyler Shough hasn’t really looked like the quarterback I thought he would be by now. He’s had some rough patches and some sloppy turnovers in the first three games. It even got to the point where some Tech fans were calling for backup Behren Morton to step in. If Shough or Morton can step up, then I believe this team can compete for a Big 12 title. If not, then they will probably end up 7-5 or 8-4.
Duke: I mentioned earlier that Kansas State, Texas, and Oklahoma will all be teams that finish with eight or more wins. Both Texas and Oklahoma look like they can win ten games this season and despite a heartbreaking loss to Missouri last weekend, Kansas State is still good enough to make a run this season. While I am still unsure who will be in the title game (outside of Texas), I do know that both teams playing in Arlington come December will probably have a record of 10-2 or better.