Tillery’s Trends: Hunter Dickinson’s Hot Start, Big Ten West is a Joke

Everyone loves a good trend, and while I may not speak for everyone in the wide world of college sports, I do have the opportunity on Heartland College Sports to discuss some interesting trends revolving around the Big 12 Conference and what’s coming up in the near future.

Tillery’s Trends is a weekly story that revolves around trending topics, players, coaches, teams, betting lines, and anything else that stands out about the world of college sports.

On the menu for today, we take a look at the Big Ten West’s declining football product, Big 12 freshmen poised to break out, and the battle for Big 12 Player of the Year. Enjoy!



It’s early, and I get that, but the likeliness of any other player rivaling Kansas center Hunter Dickinson for the title of Big 12 Player of the Year is somewhat unlikely.

Dickinson has a shot to be the best player in college basketball and take home the Wooden Award, which would be the league’s first winner since Frank Mason accomplished the feat at Kansas in 2017.

There’s a ton of basketball left to be played but it does feel like the sportsbooks should start to offer odds for Big 12 Player of the Year listed as Dickinson vs. the field.

There could be a plethora of players that could take home the title but when a player of Dickinson’s stature combines with one of the best coaches in the history of the game, it becomes an awfully tough thing to ignore.

This story will be something to monitor as the season continues, but in case the argument needed any extra support, Dickinson has already claimed 3/4 Big 12 Weekly Awards through the first two weeks of the season.



While the idea of Iowa being horrendous on the offensive side of the ball has been a fun gimmick to follow over the past few seasons, I think I’m done with the joke now.

The concept of a Division 1 football game being listed with a total point spread in the 20’s is actually equal parts laughable and concerning. As Iowa gets set to take on Nebraska on Saturday in Week 13 of the college football season, the duo earned the lowest point total in CFB history with the over-under being listed at just 24.5.

While it is easy to point at Iowa as the common denominator in the scenario, the Big Ten West as a whole is an absolute joke. I know that high-scoring offensive shootouts may not be for everyone but if I plan to watch football on Saturdays, you will not catch me sweating out a bet in hopes of one team finding the endzone twice.

Iowa now has been listed as a participant in six of the eight lowest totals in the history of the game. Ohio State, Michigan, and Penn State are one thing, Iowa, Nebraska, Rutgers, Purdue, and the entirety of the West is something completely different.



I came across an interesting story on Tuesday night that ranked the top freshmen on the basketball court in the country each week which really caught my attention. The article listed a power ranking of freshmen with two representatives from the Big 12 Conference earning spots in Week 2.

On3’s Jamie Shaw reserved spots for both Baylor’s Ja’Kobe Walter and Iowa State’s Milan Momcilovic with Walter checking in at No. 2 and Momcilovic at No. 5.

While both Walter and Momcilovic are more than deserving to be on the list it reminded me just how incredible some of the previous freshmen in the Big 12 Conference have been on a yearly basis. The league produced two top picks in last year’s NBA Draft with Gradey Dick and Keyonte George both being selected inside of the top 20.

The league continues to produce some of the top NBA prospects in terms of freshmen with Oklahoma State’s Cade Cunningham, Oklahoma’s Trae Young, Kansas’ Andrew Wiggins, and many more all finding success at the professional level.

Could these two be the next freshmen phenoms in the Big 12?

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