Blog Entry

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

Posted on: February 28, 2012 6:54 pm
Edited on: February 29, 2012 7:16 pm
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Posted by Bryan Fischer

I started a new feature on the blog last week called The Monday Mailbag. I have now changed it to The Tuesday Tweetbag because can and because I like alliteration. I'm here to answer questions tweeted to me so make sure you follow me on Twitter at @BryanDFischer. So without further ado, let the smorgasbord of questions commence.
To be honest, I think both will have no issues transitioning to the Big 12. In 2012, both should have teams that will be very competitive and are likely dark horse picks to win the conference. Had TCU not had their issues, you would have seen plenty of people go out on a limb and put the Horned Frogs atop their preseason ballots. West Virginia returns their starting quarterback, Heisman candidate Geno Smith, and 14 other starters from a team that turned in one of the most impressive bowl performances in history. There are several holes they need to fill but a solid recruiting class should complement who is already on the roster. Both teams fit stylistically into the Big 12 and Dana Holgorsen knows the league well from his days as an assistant.

What really helps the two newcomers is the fact that the Big 12 has never really been this open. The Red River Rivalry might determine the eventual winner but neither Texas or Oklahoma will dominate like they have in the past. Last year Oklahoma State won the whole thing and Baylor - Baylor! - overcame a really bad defense to turn in a historic season. From top to bottom there was more parity than just about every other BCS league. I think TCU stands to benefit more than anybody going forward beyond 2012 as they're now the only BCS-level program in the talent-rich Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex and have upgraded facilities to the point that they come into the conference as equals. It's going to be a little more difficult for Holgorsen but he's proven he can turn unheralded recruits into big time offensive players and win at multiple levels. Of all the programs that have changed conferences, I would put all the money in my wallet on TCU and West Virginia being the most successful.
I've heard several good things about Beckman and think he's done a good job getting things going early on but faces an uphill climb. While Zook was known as a good recruiter (both at Illinois and Florida before that), his teams lacked consistency and, outside of when the Illini went 9-4 in 2007, never could break through into the top half of the conference. He had a few surprising gets on the recruiting trail but there were never enough good players on Zook's teams to make a difference. Anytime you upgrade in the coaching department, it's good for the program. How much Beckman elevates Illinois remains to be seen but it's a solid hire. Little things - ok major things - like not knowing the score, probably won't happen with the new staff. While it should mean the team is better on the field in terms of "the little things," I'm not sure that will translate into a huge number of wins.
I've seen Burfict since high school and there's no question that he is a talented linebacker. In his star-crossed career however, it has always come down to what the heck is going on between his ears. There was a point where most people had him pegged as a possible top 10 pick, now he'll be lucky to go on the first two days of the draft. I think there were plenty of issues with him and Dennis Erickson at Arizona State so I wonder if getting out of that environment and into the NFL will be a positive for Burfict. Perhaps the jolt of teams treating him like an adult rather than a kid that a coach's job is depending on will, in turn, make him a better player.

He is a good football player who will be drafted. How good and how high depends on how hard he wants to work and how serious he is about controlling his emotions and playing the right way. If he's still known for picking up personal fouls in two years, I'd say he's going to be looking for a new line of work much quicker than he first thought. Bruce Feldman has plenty more on Burfict and the draft on his blog.
This is such an interesting draft because the drop off from the first two quarterbacks (Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III) to the number three guy is huge. But because so many teams need a signal-caller, Tannehill has the potential to go as high as the top 10 during the draft. If you look at the CBSSports.com quarterback rankings, he has a first round projection but if I were an NFL GM, he would simply be too much of a risk to draft that high. Unlike most of the other guys, Tannehill doesn't have as many reps at the position because he played wide receiver - and was pretty good at it - for a while when in College Station. I think there is a lot to like about him, starting with his size and mobility, but I just can't see how the upside is worth a first round pick when you consider the caliber of players available.

If I had a need at quarterback, I think I would wait things out if I couldn't grab Luck or RG3. There are options on the free agent market (including, likely, some guy named Manning) and several guys who I think could be solid NFL guys in the 2nd round like Kirk Cousins or Brandon Weeden. Don't forget, there should be another strong group of QBs coming out next year like Matt Barkley and Tyler Wilson.

Our draft guys also tackled the Tannehill debtate and went into detail on what they saw from the tape.


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Comments

Since: Sep 25, 2011
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:18 am
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

Not alot of love here and can't wait to prove them all wrong...not enough depth, size or speed...speed?(seriously)....hmm....ok....The league is without ? better but its also typical to the responses from people to believe that just because the league is stronger than another from which a team is coming from that they will struggle.....It goes without saying again that this coming season will be a grind but when in the hell is not!!.....WVU/TCU are both better than the two that are leaving which will also make the grind that much more for the others as well will it not?.....I think it matters more if the team is any good rather than the conf they are coming from and in this case both of the mentioned will be ok and one(WVU) will compete for it's league title!   



Since: Nov 19, 2006
Posted on: February 29, 2012 6:56 pm
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

TCU and West Virginia will be competitive in the Big 12, but neither has the talent nor the experience to win in the Big 12 for the forseeable future.  They simply are not used to playing in such a competitive Conference.  TCU also has all kinds of problems on the field.  Their last 5 games are brutal. As far as Illinois goes, I think that the change cannot do them any harm.  Zook obviously does not have the talent that a head coach needs.  He is a solid recruter, but a poor head coach.  With Indiana, Minnesota, and Purdue at home, plus three non-con Patsies at home and a trip to a very depleated Arizona State team, Illinois should have no problems becoming bowl eligable.



Since: Nov 27, 2011
Posted on: February 29, 2012 4:14 pm
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

I THINK TCU WILL BE EXTREMELY COMPETITIVE IN THE BG-12 IN 2012....THEIR BIGGEST WEAKNESS WILL BE DEPTH ESP IN THE OL AND DL BUT THEY RETURN PERHAPS THE BEST OFFENSE AMONG ALL BG-12 TMS....I LIKE TO THINK OU AND UT WILL BE BETTER AND OSU AND BU WILL BE REBUILDING....GREAT TIME FOR TCU TO JOIN THE BG-12....THE OTHER TMS WILL NOT BE A FACTOR....IN MY OPINION, UWVA WILL BE .500 AT BEST IN BG-12 CONF PLAY AS TRAVEL TO NEW LOCALES WILL TAKE ITS TOLL AS WELL AS LACK OF DEPTH, SPEED, AND SIZE NEEDED TO COMPETE IN THE BG-12....AS OTHERS HAVE SAID, THIS AIN'T THE BIG-LEAST, WELCOME TO THE BIG LEAGUES.



Since: Oct 23, 2006
Posted on: February 29, 2012 1:28 pm
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

In any game the likes of TCU and WVU can compete.

But the week to week grind will hurt them until they adjust.  The depth of the Big 12 teams will wear them down.

IF they only had to play Texas or OU as the big game (similar to UTah or Boise), they could be fine.

That is why they tend to succeed in bowl games with plenty of rest and preparation time,

You don't get rest in the Big 12.  Each week is another potential loss.

But teams like Texas Tech, Baylor, K-State, and Oklahoma State have shown ability to flirt with top 10 type teams on any given year.

There are no gimme games with the exception of Kansas and maybe Iowa State each season.



Since: Jun 29, 2011
Posted on: February 29, 2012 1:25 pm
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

GO Mountaineers!!



Since: Aug 11, 2011
Posted on: February 29, 2012 12:41 pm
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

BIG 12 TITLE.....?!?!?!....Shouldn't that involve some sorta title game?



Since: Jul 14, 2010
Posted on: February 29, 2012 10:46 am
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

I dont understand how next to nobody thinks Brandon Weeden is a NFL ready QB.  IMO I think the guy is the most NFL ready QB in the draft.  Luck still has work to do and RG3 is a pure athlete but the NFL is a whole new ball game, everybody is just as fast as he and are much more intelegent on reads and will get to him at will.  Not sayin RG3 isnt a good QB, he just isnt NFL ready.  Weeden on the other hand is ready.  I see alot of Colt McCoy in him and look what Colt did last year.  Weeden can do the same thing.  Top 5 pick.  Not a second rounder.




Since: Apr 19, 2011
Posted on: February 29, 2012 10:43 am
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

Don't worry TCU fans and West V fans you will get a win against Kansas which isn't saying much



Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: February 29, 2012 10:39 am
 

TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

WVU is in for a rude awakening.......the BIG 12 ISN'T the Big East    LOL



Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: February 29, 2012 7:00 am
 

Tuesday Tweetbag: TCU/WVU to the Big 12 and more

GOOOOOOOOOOOO MOUNTAINEERS!!!!!!!!Cool



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