Yahoo Sports released a pre-season breakdown of all things Big 12, and the Texas schools showed that the outcome of the conference might lie in Fort Worth and Austin this year.
TCU’s Jason Verrett was selected as the preseason best defensive player for his lockdown ability at cornerback and was labeled “an absolute ballhawk, recording 15 pass breakups and six interceptions last year” while adding 63 tackles.
Texas Christian University is also part of the biggest non-conference game when they go against LSU on August 31 at AT&T Stadium with hopes of knocking off the perennial SEC powerhouse.
But wait, that’s not all. Yahoo Sports says that TCU’s Amon G. Carter stadium is the best in the league, though they’re quick to point out that none of the teams have particularly good ones to begin with. The Horned Frogs received bonus points for recent renovations.
Texas’ history and location brought them a handful of accolades as Austin was selected as the best town — Ames, Iowa is the worst apparently — while the Red River Rivalry with Oklahoma was the best rivalry, because obviously.
The Longhorns will also take part in the biggest league game with Oklahoma State on November 16 in Austin as the two teams expect to be at the top of the conference for the late season bout.
But there’s also the issue of the school that sits in between Fort Worth and Austin. Baylor’s Cyril Richardson was selected as the best offensive player. Yahoo describes the 6-foot-5-inch, 335-pound lineman as perhaps the best guard in the country and his ability to play tackle means that he is a likely first-rounder in next year’s NFL draft. Apparently, the selection for best offensive player was between three offensive lineman.
Baylor is also the breakthrough team this year after several years of growing success under head coach Art Briles. Yahoo Sports expects the top of the Big 12 to be particularly soft this year, allowing for the Bears to perhaps record an upset or two and find their way to a BCS Bowl as Big 12 Champs. Baylor is also poised to give TCU a run for its money in the stadium department. The Bears are in the construction phase of a new on-campus stadium that overlooks the Brazos River.
Of course, the best part of all of this is that preseason accolades often serve as no more than amusing footnotes in the history books as stars stumble and freshmen come out of nowhere to cement their status among the league’s elite.
College football is back, and it is glorious.