Big 12 Legacy

Football:

Vasherized was there to record the developments from the open practice, Geoff Ketchum is opposing the new development on the grounds that it gives up too much of what worked the last 2 years. I'm feeling better from hearing both opinions.

Sure the 3-step passing game of Colt's prime was good to Texas, but it was also dependent on super-accurate Colt throwing darts underneath to the Quan and Ship both of whom he had been throwing to for 2 entire seasons before the breakthrough. Mack can't ask every quarterback to step in and immediately have the necessary timing and accuracy on short throws to execute that offense. Colt was barely able to do it without Quan.

Gilbert's strength is the deep pass and that has to be set up by a running game. Incidentally, one of our best WR talents is a go deep guy (Williams), the OL is comprised of big maulers and they actually have a FB-type on campus in Barrett Matthews. Everything points towards man-blocking and under center sets.

Just as sticking with the Vince Young offense was foolish with Colt it would be a comparable miss-allocation of resources to just plug plug Gilbert into the Colt offense.

You may have heard the morning guys on 1300 creating top 5 lists for "best Big 12/NFL players". I think a list like this basically serves to create a sense of who the real dominant football players are, the guys who exceed at every level. Their lists were pretty negligible but I'll just mention that they featured Dante Hall and Shane Lechler and decided to ignore linemen for reasons best described as stupid.

I've comprised my own list in typical Nickel Rover arrogance that my opinion will be better.

5). Vince Young

Arguably (meaning that I will argue this with you) the greatest college player of all time. Vince won just about every offensive and overall award in 2005 that was granted and lost the Heisman in a now notorious oversight. He was the Rose Bowl MVP twice, etc. Thus far in the NFL he has been Rookie of the year and is a two time pro-bowler. He may jump up this list towards the end of his NFL career.

4). Casey Hampton

In college he led the team in tackles in 99 and 00 from the NT spot and was an All-American. He claimed to have never been pancaked and inspired a very special story from ClosetoJumping in HS ball. In the NFL he's been a 5 time Pro-Bowler, defensive anchor in the 3-4 for 2 SuperBowl champion teams led by defense, and a rich man in general. You can mention Kevin Williams, Pat Williams or Tommie Harris but neither of the Williams had the same kind of college career and I think Hampton has had similar success to Harris over a longer period of time.

3). Adrian Peterson

Almost hit 2,000 rushing yards as a freshman and was the heisman runner-up (Matt Leinart) and an All-American. His next 2 seasons were both shortened by injury and still almost allowed him to jump Billy Sims on the OU all-time rushing list. In the NFL he was ROY and has been named to 3 pro-bowls. If not for the injuries he might have surpassed Ricky's college feats and could do so in the NFL.

2). Evil Roy Williams

Best player on a champion (2000), Nagurski and Thorpe Winner (2001) most TFL in a season by a OU secondary member (12). Roy Williams terrorized the college level unlike anything I ever want to see again from a Sooner defender. Imagine if Texas had 2009 Earl Thomas for multiple seasons, that's what it was like. In the NFL he made it to 5 Pro-Bowls and had some devastating seasons before the NFL passed the Roy Williams rule, he began to lose his place in a pass-heavy league, and became a born-again Christian and lost some of the viciousness that made him so dangerous. Nevertheless, a sustained run of terror through both leagues.

1). Ricky Williams

2nd all-time leading NCAA rusher behind Ron Dayne, Heisman winner, and 2-time Doak Walker award winner. Ricky absolutely dominated the college game. It took a 9-man front to stop him and even then the outcome was in question. The end of his record immediately at the hands of Ron Dayne was universally acknowledged as a great travesty because Ricky was clearly the superior player. If not for Vince he would go down as the most dominant UT offensive player of all time.

His pro-career has been marked by retirement, marijuana and social anxiety disorder and lost in that chaos has been 6 1,000 yard seasons and a Pro-Bowl appearance (harder to make Pro-Bowl at RB). Ricky has had some incredible longevity in the NFL along with some great seasons that, when added to his college career, make him the Big 12's most successful player

Yeah, all Texas and OU, but I defy someone to name a Big 12 player not involved in the RRS who is a strong enough candidate to knock one of these guys out. In the future this could change as newer stars enter the NFL but that's how I see it for now.

Basketball:

Trips Right had another brilliant write-up of the OU game and as someone who was there I can attest that this is a different team in many ways when Hamilton is in rhythm on the floor. His passing was contagious and the floor spacing with Jordan was much better more conducive to the high-screen game. The offense runs best through Jordan.

Scipio Tex made his defense of Rick Barnes the man and Texas coaching legend and that's really all there needs to be said about it. Particularly the point that this squad happened to respond less well to his style while others have responded perfectly. I'll always root for Rick Barnes teams even when I'm thinking about putting sharp things through my temple in the next road game during an offensive possession.

Tied in with the praise for how Barnes has handled care of the UT basketball program is this detail. I want to win a championship as badly as most but if you're putting good kids into the world and into the NBA that's a pretty lofty accomplishment. I'm reminded again that Colt made me prouder with his post game statements after the Championship then he could have with another gutsy victory.

That said if Hamilton doesn't play at least 25 minutes against Baylor I might become feral.

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