As mentioned late in yesterday's Rock M Roundtable, the media has predicted a Mizzou-Oklahoma rematch in this fall's Big 12 Championship game. Mizzou was the unanimous choice to win the North, while Oklahoma got all but two first-place votes in the South. Dave Matter has more, sharing both his ballot and his take on the results.
My ballot looks pretty similar to the final results, though I had Colorado ahead of Nebraska for third place in the North and Texas Tech ahead of Texas for second in the South. By looking at the vote totals, both of those scenarios were extremely close to happening. I’m a little surprised Texas Tech wasn’t a strong second-place choice. The Red Raiders have been getting more national buzz than ever, and there seems to be more question marks surrounding Texas, though the addition of defensive coordinator Will Muschamp was probably a factor in all those second-place votes for the Horns.
I was tempted to drop Nebraska to fifth, perhaps even sixth based on the scant level in talent in Lincoln and the fact that Nebraska plays at both Kansas State and Iowa State. But something tells me Bo Pelini and his staff can manage a .500 season, while K-State and the Cyclones are going to have more struggles. Iowa State was competitive against some of the league's best teams last year but doesn't appear settled on a quarterback. Meanwhile, K-State's relying on a lot of junior college additions, which can go boom or bust. Got a feeling a full season with QB Joe Ganz at the helm for Nebraska will give Pelini's team some stability it lacked last year.
My own thoughts (as I shared in comments over there):
1) NU's schedule sure seems to set up better than CU's. NU gets both MU and KU at home and could very easily pick one of them off due to home field advantage, while CU gets both on the road. Plus NU-CU is in Lincoln. I have NU #3 simply because of that.
2) As for UT-TT...I'm not understanding the "buzz" on Tech, to be honest. Maybe it's my imagination, but it seemed they were locked into the #12-17 range when spring football ended, and a couple months later...after nothing of note has happened...they're suddenly in the #7-10 range. That seems to happen to somebody every year, and this year the Summer Buzz teams are Tech and Clemson. Tech is still quite a ways behind UT/OU defensively (and I'm baffled as to where the "they had the #1 D in the conference the last 8 games" blurb has come from...they were only #1 in pass yards allowed, and that's because everybody was rushing for 200+ yards on them), and that's going to hold them back.
Now...if they have a case for #2 in the South, it's the same case I laid out for NU--the schedule. They get UT (and OSU) at home, though they still have to go to Norman and Lawrence...not to mention Manhattan and College Station. It's by all means possible they can finish #2...but I'm pretty comfortable in picking UT right now.
The Post-Dispatch has a quick blurb as well.
Well I guess Mizzou fans can no longer say Mizzou didn't sign a single JUCO player in last year's football recruiting class. Five months after Signing Day, a DE named Brian Coulter has signed on to play for Mizzou. He signed with Florida State in 2007, "didn't meet the enrollment deadline" (whatever that means), got pushed out the door by FSU in favor of a tight end...about 42 other things happened, and now he's at Mizzou. Weird story, but the dude had 13 sacks as a JUCO sophomore, so he may be able to help as a pass-rush specialist at the very least. Here's his initial Rivals profile from 2007, and Gabe has a few more factoids on the PowerMizzou message boards. Hyperbole is flying around the room over there, but there's a chance that this guy's actually pretty good.
And speaking of hyperbole..."next Justin Smith"? Really? :-)
It's Dave Matter's turn to take on the "Mike Alden Administration at 10 years" story. The article has a nice sidebar rundown of the hires Alden has made. If not for basketball, this would be one helluva list.
And speaking of AD-type things, the Dot Com's new Big 12 blog ranks the Big 12 according to TV money. I'd take this opportunity to once again bitch about how the conference doesn't split its revenue evenly, but...been there. Instead I'll just point you to another post at the same blog...this one ranking Big 12 coaches by their playing days. Finally somebody ranks Pinkel ahead of Mangino...ahem...