Big 12 notes
by Jim Buzzerd
Last week the Big 12 Conference held its annual football media days in Frisco, Texas near Dallas. The media days is a two day affair where the head coach of each conference school and four or five players meet with media types. West Virginia University head coach Dana Holgorsen was accompanied to Frisco by quarterback Will Grier, wide receiver David Sills, left tackle Yodny Cajuste, linebacker David Long and safety Dravon-Askew Henry. The Big 12 also times the release of its preseason selections of teams and players to the event.
Fifty-two media members voted in the preseason football poll. Oklahoma garnered 46 of the 52 first-place votes. West Virginia was chosen second with TCU, Texas and Oklahoma State rounding out the top five. The Mountaineers received two first-place nods while TCU and Texas had one each. Kansas State was predicted to finish sixth, claiming two first-place votes followed by Iowa State, Texas Tech, Baylor and Kansas.
West Virginia was a solid second place choice in the voting, and most talking heads I listened to last week agreed that WVU would likely be the team to unseat Oklahoma in the conference standings. Most of those same talking heads also agreed any of the next four ranked teams could successfully challenge for the second spot, or unseat the Sooners.
The top two finishers in the league standings will compete in the Big 12 Football Championship Game on Saturday, December 1 to determine the Conference title. Should the regular season play out as the media suggests the Big 12 championship game would create a feared scenario where WVU and Oklahoma would play back-to-back games since the regular season finale will be played on Black Friday night in Morgantown.
On the individual front West Virginia placed four players on the Preseason All-Big 12 team led by Grier who was named as the Offensive Player of the Year. Sills and Cajuste joined Grier on the offensive team. Long was the lone Mountaineer selected to the preseason team.