2012 Big 12 Football Power Ranking: Spring Camper Assessment

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Now that Texas has wrapped up spring camp, and it is months before the Big 12 football season hits a neighborhood gridiron near you, we wanted to kick the tires and take an early peek at a Big 12 Spring Practice 2012 Power Poll. For the second straight season the Big 12 makeup will be new. Gone now are Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska, and Texas A&M. Included for 2012 are the Horned Frogs of Texas Christian University and the West Virginia University Mountaineers.

In addition to the newly minted Big 12 members, graduation and other attrition has changed the dynamic of the power structure not to mention the maturation of young players at perennial top conference programs. Still, the key to the Big 12 is quarterback play and defensive strength. You need strong contenders in both categories to navigate the high-octane waters of this conference.

With that said, below represents our community author's poll results of an early 2012 conference strength ranking. One thing is obvious. We all agree, in spite of the coaching staff turnover and Notre Dame transfer QB Dayne Crist, Kansas will again have difficulty getting off the mat. Also, the middle of the pack is a toss-up given the churn of offensive playmakers outside of the top 3 ranked teams. It is challenging to determine the proper alignment of reigning Big 12 champ OSU along with Baylor given they are basically starting from scratch with new quarterbacks. Finally, maybe not surprising to some, but TCU and WVU are presumed to continue their current success in a brand new "big boy" conference. My guess is we may not have properly considered the certainty of wear and tear a Big 12 schedule will do to these programs and therefore are basing assessments on their performance of late.

Team

Average

Stdev

Oklahoma

1.286

0.469

Texas

2.286

0.994

West Virginia

3.000

0.784

Kansas State

4.214

1.626

TCU

5.214

1.051

Oklahoma State

6.000

1.519

Baylor

7.214

1.251

Texas Tech

7.786

1.369

Iowa State

8.000

1.038

Kansas

10.000

0.000

Our plan is to circle back with a preseason ranking once fall camp news and notes trickle into the corporate office.

In any event, please chime in with your comments and let us know where we eat the cheese.

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Oklahoma

Key departures: Frank Alexander (DE), Ronnell Lewis (DE), Travis Lewis (LB), Jamell Fleming (CB), Donald Stephenson (OT), James Hanna (TE), Ryan Broyles (WR), Stephen Good (OG)

Key returners: Landry Jones (QB), Dom Whaley (RB), Trey Millard (FB), Jamarkus McFarland (DT), Javon Harris (CB), Demontre Hurst (S)...and those are just the key returning seniors.

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 2nd (9th); Rivals - 2nd (10th)

Key 2012 Signees: Trey Metoyer (WR), Alex Ross (RB), Courtney Gardner (WR), Sterling Shepard (WR), Duron Neal (WR), Taylor McNamara (TE); (Note - only 5 of 25 from state of Texas).

Summary: While those departing seniors listed above were post season award list chart topping, the fact remains that deep into last season the OU Sooners lost a great deal to injury. The developed depth wasn't there to withstand the rigors of a very strong Big 12 in the latter part of the schedule but rest assured Coach Stoops and his staff are preparing a conditioning program that attends to this issue and will be more than ready this upcoming season at the two deep to make a serious run at another Big 12 championship.

OU beat writer Berry Tramel noted after the RRS last season, "The Sooners have a whole bunch of good ballplayers, and few of them are seniors."

"We only started seven seniors," Stoops said. "I think we're very young overall as a team. That was the exciting part. We still feel we have a lot of development with these players. It's only the sixth game, we've gotta keep pushing for improvement, with so many young players."

"I look at the front eight, nine guys" on defense, Stoops said. "Only one senior. One linebacker senior. Whole secondary, one senior. Hopefully, we'll continue to get better."

- Bob Stoops comments after the 55-17 shellacking of UT last season.

In spite of off-season rumor and internet innuendo of locker room problems, OU is listed at the top of our Spring Practice Power Ranking for a reason. You don't have to look too far past those returning seniors to understand why.

2011 started with high hopes as OU was the #1 preseason favorite to win it all. And they started off playing like that might just be the case racing to a 7-0 record. However, the team finished poorly once their All-American wide out Ryan Broyles and running back walk-on sensation Dom Whaley both suffered season ending injuries. Add to this additional critical injuries to starting defensemen and OU limped to the finish line and suffering the flaming wrath of Boomer Nation.

As a result of the lackluster performing defense (as compared to their normal standard), Coach Bob Stoops made coaching changes bringing back fired Arizona Wildcats head coach, and brother, Mike Stoops who became the new defensive coordinator after the resignation of long time DC Brent Venables. Recall that Mike held the very same position during the 2000 national championship season and is a fan favorite to help rekindle the dominating defenses that Coach Stoops benefited from in his early tenure at OU.

So how does OU get back to the swagger of the preseason 2011 hype? They must return to the dominating physicality on both lines of scrimmage. They return 4 of 5 starters on the offensive line anchored by first team all Big 12 offensive guard Gabe Ikard and 3 of 4 starters on the defensive line. While they lose key cogs in these units to graduation (defensive end Frank Alexander was Big 12 defensive player of the year), finding replacements for these players, along with graduating senior tight end James Hanna, will be job number one this off-season. But make no mistake, the horses in the pen are plentiful with the likes of Jamarcus McFarland anchoring a formidable defensive line and Ikard setting the tone for the offense.

The potency of OU however falls to their offensive skill players in 2012 Heisman list hopeful Landry and his returning junior receiving corps of Franks, Reynolds and Stills who collectively accounted for a little less than 40% of their passing yardage. Running back is a question mark entering spring practice with walk-on phenom Dom Whaley still rehabilitating his injured ankle. He should be back to his previous form come fall camp. Look for Roy Finch and Brennan Clay to be stout work horses in his absence along with RS freshman Danzel Williams. Add fullback Trey Millard and their RZ phenom QB Blake "Bell-Dozer" Bell and the proven skill position capabilities for the Sooners vaunt them right at or near the top of the conference offensive heap.

Combine all of this with a very manageable schedule until November (outside of the annual tilt with Texas at the Cotton Bowl) when the Sooners should be in great shape to face the likes of WVU, OSU, and TCU in the final home stretch and one begins to see the makings of a very special year. -TXStampede

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Texas

Key departures: Keenan Robinson (LB), Emmanuel Acho (LB), Kheeston Randall (DT), Fozzy Whittaker (RB), Cody Johnson (FB/RB)

Key returners: Kenny Vacarro (S), Malcolm Brown (RB), Joe Bergeron (RB), Jaxon Shipley (WR), Mason Walters (OG), Jackson Jeffcoat (DE), Alex Okafor (DE)

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 1st (3rd); Rivals - 1st (2nd)

Key 2012 Signees: Johnathan Gray (RB), Malcom Brown (DT), Curtis Riser (OG), Torshiro Davis (OLB), Connor Brewer (QB), Cayleb Jones (WR)

Summary: Texas had an up-and-down season that ended up at 8-5, which more or less adhered to most projections. Despite some frustration, primarily with the offense, some real strides were made and there were signs of promise for the future.

Defensively, Texas had some growing up to do but finished last season, without a doubt, with the best defense in the conference. That defense returns the majority of its starters and may be even better. Jeffcoat and Okafor will be the best defensive end duo in the league, and the secondary is loaded with talent across the board, losing only Gideon and keeping Vacarro. The only position that will probably not improve is linebacker, with the departures of Acho and Robinson, but guys like Hicks, Cobbs, and Edmund can fill in nicely as needed. Furthermore, the loss of Randall to graduation and Calvin Howell to off-the-field indiscretions can be mitigated by the plethora of bodies that the Horns have at DT. With one more year in Diaz's system, Horns fans have every reason to be optimistic about this defense.

Unfortunately, they also have reason to be worried about the quarterback position. There's no need to rehash last season, but needless to say, whoever plays quarterback needs to be somewhat competent for the Horns to go anywhere. He doesn't even have to be good; just half-decent. If David Ash can manage the game like he did against Cal, that will be enough for Texas to be compete for the conference. That's a big "if," but I'm confident (hopeful?) that he can improve to that point.

The good news is that he should have some help. Even without Fozzy and Johnson, the backfield is absolutely loaded with Brown, Bergeron, and the incoming Jonathon Gray. The offensive line loses just one starter, David Snow, and while it still has work to do, there's good reason to hope that it'll be better next season. However, the other big question mark is at receiver; only Shipley proved his reliability last year. Others need to step up to help out the young quarterback (I'm looking at you, Mike Davis).

I'm a bit bullish about Texas' chances this year, partially because I'm biased (who isn't?) but also because I think Texas will have the clear top defense in the conference and have a dangerous running game to boot. The passing game will probably be painful to watch at times, but in this year's Big 12, that could be enough to win the conference. -TheElusiveShadow

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West Virginia

Key departures: Don Barklay (OT), Tyler Rader (OG), Najee Goode (LB), Julian Miller (DT), Bruce Irvin (DE)

Key returners: Geno Smith (QB), Tavon Austin (WR), Stedmon Bailey (WR), Pat Eager (OT), Darwin Cook (S), Terence Garvin (S), Jorge Wright (NT)

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 7th (37th); Rivals - 7th (48th)

Key 2012 Signees: Deontay McManus (WR), Christian Brown (DT), Torry Clayton (RB), Ford Childress (QB)

Summary: Dana Holgorsen could not have started his first season as head coach any better in winning the Big East conference (3-way tiebreaker) and kicking the snot out of what was presumably the superior team in Clemson in the Orange Bowl by the embarrassing score of 70-33.

What was the reward for an above and beyond performance? An invitation to join the Big 12 conference. This is a big step up in competition for the program and will be compounded by the increased travel distances to play in Ames, Austin, Lubbock, and Stillwater in 2012. Still, the sweet slot in a major BCS conference is great and all but don't discount 8 home games either (5 conference). That is a HUGE advantage and more than offsets the presumed travel disadvantage.

With that said, the talent pool that Rich Rodriguez left in his wake fell perfectly into Holgo's high-octane Run-N-Shoot spread scheme. The linchpin to make the whole thing work like a clock is none other than quarterback phenom Geno Smith. Smith was a Heisman contender in a crowded market and did not crack the NYC ceremony invitee list but is sure to be on the early 2012 watch lists. So you don't have to look it up, here's a rundown on his 2011 season performance (national rank):

4,385 yards passing (4th)

337.3 pass yds per game (5th)

65.8 completion % (tied 19th)

31 TD passes (tied 12th)

There is only one quarterback returning in 2012 that had more passing yards per game than Smith, one Landry Jones. And like Jones, Smith will continue to throw to a seasoned wide receiver corps as all of WVU's leading pass catcher's return for a senior season.

Unlike the offensive horsepower, WVU's defense compared modestly. They fielded the 3rd best squad in the Big East allowing 4.92 ypp. Not bad but Coach Holgorsen was not satisfied. As a result, the entire defensive staff was replaced. Joining Holgo will be former special teams coach at Oklahoma State Joe DeForest and former Pitt defensive coordinator, and interim head coach, Keith Patterson. Both are tagged as co-defensive coordinators but this is Patterson's defense. They will need to find speed and in a hurry to run Patterson's multiple-look 3-4 scheme. And they will also need to find replacements for key departs having to replace their leading tackler in Goode and the 14 combined sack production of Miller and Irvin.


While the 2011 defense performed reasonably well statistically speaking, they just gave up too many points ending the year in the middle of the pack nationally. The biggest problem was RZ scoring where opponents notched an 83.3% rating. That was good for 77th nationally (by comparison, Baylor finished the year at 78th in this category). As Larry the Cable Guy said, "Not good." If the new staff can find physical, speedy replacements and coach these guys up in a new scheme then their stock will rise. But this is a tall order and will be interesting to watch.

Unlike my peers, I thought based on the offensive strength alone that WVU is worthy of a 2nd place power rank. Their defense is a big question mark for sure but with an offense capable of putting 70 on a top 20 team, do you really need a great defense? While a tall order, I think the Mountaineers make a strong case for having a very real shot at challenging for a conference championship. -TXStampede

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Kansas State

Key departures: Clyde Aufner (OT), David Garrett (CB), Tysyn Hartman (S), David Garrett (CB)

Key returners: Collin Klein (QB), Manase Foketi (OT, possible medical RS), John Hubert (RB), B.J. Finney (C), Nigel Malone (CB)

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 10th (76th); Rivals - 7th (NA)

Key 2012 Signees: Marquez Clark (WR), Tavarius Bender (QB), Javon Rooks (OT), Jarvis Leverett (RB)

Summary: Kansas State had a strong season last year, and they return the majority of their players. Last season, they suffered some injuries on the offensive line but pulled it together as the season progressed. They'll lose three starters from that line, but Zach Hanson shouldn't have been starting anyway if Foketi didn't get hurt. Foketi is seeking a medical redshirt to get another year, which will be a big help to their line. The line wasn't dominant or anything but they got the job done, and they might even be a bit better next season. Of course, the heart and soul of their team, Collin Klein, returns for his senior season, and their year will go as he goes. He gets some returning help as pretty much all of his runningbacks and receivers return, but there's no secret that he'll be the focal point of the offense in both the running and passing games.

On defense, they lose a chunk of their defensive line, although it wasn't that great anyway, as well as senior safety Hartman and senior linebacker Emmanuel Lamur. They don't lose much, but their returners aren't world-beaters either. K-State had a scrappy team overall but their defense was not great, although they played tough.

As a Longhorn, it is perilous to underestimate K-State, but I don't see them doing better than last season. Still, because they play disciplined football, they have a good shot in a competitive Big 12. -TheElusiveShadow

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TCU

Key departures: Tank Carder (LB), Jeff Olson (OT), Kyle Dooley (OG), Devin Johnson (S, drug bust), D.J. Yendrey (DT, drug bust), Tanner Brock (LB, drug bust), Greg McCoy (CB)

Key returners: Casey Pachall (QB), Waymon James (RB), Ed Wesley (RB), Josh Boyce (WR), Blaize Foltz (OG), James Fry (C)

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 6th (36th); Rivals - 5th (37th)

Key 2012 Signees: Devonte Fields (DE), Griffin Gilbert (TE), James McFarland (LB), Tyler Matthews (QB), LaDarius Anthony (RB)

Summary: The Horned Frogs started a little shaky last season, and it took a while for their defense to look like a TCU defense. They still finished with only two losses and will play in a BCS conference for the first time. Unfortunately, several players got busted for drug dealing recently, and it is unclear how that will affect their program in the near future. At the very least, it cost them three probable starters, including Brock, who did not play last season due to injury. The defense should still be solid after some growing pains last year, but it's never a good thing to needlessly lose contributors.

Quarterback Casey Pachall returns after a pretty solid season, and his top weapon (Josh Boyce) and his top three runners come back with him. They do lose three starters on the offensive line, though, so that's something that is worth keeping an eye on as they see an upgrade in defensive quality on a weekly basis.

TCU may be better this year than people think, but I think Pachall still needs some grooming and I think it'll take some time for them to adjust to the weekly pressures of being in the Big 12. -TheElusiveShadow

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Oklahoma State

Key departures: Brandon Weeden (QB), Justin Blackmon (WR), Josh Cooper (WR), Nick Martinez (OG), Richetti Jones (DE), Jamie Blatnick (DE), Markelle Martin (S)

Key returners: Joseph Randall (RB), Jeremy Smith (RB), Tracy Moore (WR), Parker Graham (RT), Justin Gilbert (CB), Broderick Brown (CB)

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 5th (34th); Rivals - 4th (32nd)

Key 2012 Signees: Wes Lunt (QB), C.J. Curry (WR), Seth Jacobs (LB), Greg Brantley (OT), Calvin Barnett (DT)

Summary: The Pokes are coming off the best season in their history, and the question now is if they can sustain some semblance of that success. The largest problems are obviously replacing Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon. Granted, they were asking the same questions about replacing Zac Robinson and Dez Bryant, and that turned out fine, but reproducing that kind of production is never a guarantee. Clint Chelf was the backup last season, and the highly-touted J.W. Walsh and freshman Wes Lunt will also compete for the job. Your guess is as good as mine as to who will start, but it's unlikely to be Lunt.

Whoever the QB is, he'd have lost Blackmon, Cooper, and Anyiam, but the top two runningbacks return along with Abilene's Herschel Sims. The backfield will still be dangerous, provided they can get some blocking. On that front, the Pokes lose three starters on the offensive line, but 7 out of 11 of the two deep return. If the line can hit the ground running, Oklahoma State should still field a competent offensive even with the expected drop off in the passing game.

Defensively, they lose both starting defensive ends as well as their best defensive back, Markelle Martin. Other than that, most major players return. That said, they didn't have an elite defense last season; it was certainly better than their stats looked and they were very opportunistic, but they got gashed quite a few times. It'll be interesting to see how effective they can be if their offense isn't putting up as many points to force the tempo on the other team.

I think they'll be a solid squad that can beat anyone on any given Saturday, but I have a hard time believing that they'll be able to take the Big 12 again without Weeden and Blackmon. Look for OSU to fall back to earth a little bit. -TheElusiveShadow

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Baylor

Key departures: Robert Griffin III (QB), Terrance Ganaway (RB), Kendall Wright (RB), Phillip Blake (C), Nicholas Jean-Baptiste (NG), Tracy Robertson (DT), Elliot Coffey (MLB)

Key returners: Nick Florence (QB), Terrence Williams (WR), Lanear Sampson (WR), Jarred Salubi (RB), Ivory Wade (RT), Gary Mason (DE), Chance Casey (CB),

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 3rd (24th); Rivals - 6th (45th)

Key 2012 Signees: Javonte Magee (DE), Corey Coleman (WR), Aiavion Edwards (S), Brian Nance (LB), Kendall Erlich (LB)

Summary: Heisman? Check. Top ranked BCS conference offense? Check. Big accolades for an all-time 0.500 program that had not won 9 games in a season since half way thru Ronald Reagan's presidency and had not won 10 games since 1980. But championships, as they say, are won with defense. And that is where the Baylor story ends in 2011. Had they fielded even a remotely competitive one the successful season may have been even more so. As it stands, Baylor finished last in conference in total defense (and 116th in the nation) giving up nearly 39 points per game. It's a shame the magical season of 2011, while entertaining, did not also include a bigger team prize.

Coach Briles and his staff have their work cut out for themselves in fielding a brand new offense losing nine starters. Gone are those who produced a nation's best 7.63 yards per play. Quarterback is where it starts in this conference and Briles has stated the position is returning junior Nick Florence's to lose. Florence captained the Bears in 2009 to a 4-8 record after Griffin went down in the first game with a season ending ACL injury. They'll hand it off to Jarred Salubi (331 yards on 58 rush attempts) and throw to a Big 12 honorable mention wide receiver, and they guy made famous in that last second touchdown catch against Oklahoma, in Terrence Williams (59 receptions for 957 yards).

While Briles looks to rebuild on offense, they return several seasoned players on the defense (9 in total) and bring in much needed defensive backfield speed with 3 JUCO transfers and highly recruited safety Aiavion Edwards. However, losing significant experience at tackle and linebacker will be hard to replace and a big job for new defensive coordinator, and former SMU head coach - A&M and Pitt DC, Phil Bennett. Bennett's career spans 37 years recently leading Pitt to highly ranked defensive statistics. Briles is hopeful this homecoming awards Baylor faithful the same production.

There is no doubt in this observer's mind that Baylor will be hard pressed to repeat the incredible season of 2011. They'll win some games but in the end struggle to finish around their all-time average of .500 ball. - TXStampede

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Texas Tech

Key departures: Tramain Swindall (WR), Mickey Okafor (OT), Lonnie Edwards (OG), Justin Keown (C), Donald Langley (DT), Donnie Carona (K)

Key returners: Seth Doege (QB), Ryan Ersleban (P), Eric Stephens (RB), Alex Torres (WR), D.J. Johnson (S), Pete Robertson (LB), Cody Davis (S)

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 4th (96th); Rivals - 3rd (26th)

Key 2012 Signees: Javon Bell (WR), Reginald Davis (WR), Michael Starts (OT), Dominique Wheeler (Ath)

Summary: FBS football is a no excuse proposition. With that said, the 2011 Raiders encountered a rash of injuries last season that basically put them out of business. Starting around mid-season, Tech lost 5 starters to season ending injuries. The most painful loss was none other than their career 5.2 YPC running back Eric Stephens who looks to help get the Red Raiders back to a respectable rushing game in 2012 where Tech finished last in rushing yards per game in 2011.

But the big news coming out of Lubbock has to be a retooling of the defensive coaching staff. Tuberville has revamped the entire defensive staff. And the results on the field certainly pushed for the turnover. The Raiders finished 9th in total defense and gave up a whopping 56 touchdowns (compared to Texas league leading 28 TD's). To shore up the abysmal showing, Tuberville turned to former North Carolina defensive coordinator Art Kaufman. Kaufman is a journeyman coach spending the vast majority of his career at southeast schools. His forte is linebackers and rush defense putting two LB's in the league. His best defense at UNC finished 6th in the nation and 13th in scoring defense (2009). The scheme is changing to a 4-3 predominant look which will put one more LB on the field on most downs instead of a nickel back in their 4-2-5 set last year.

In spite of Tech's defensive woes and injuries, their pass defense finished second in the conference. And they return all starters. Cory Davis and D.J. Johnson will make it difficult up the middle so teams will have to work outside to be successful on pass attempts. Tuberville also hired a new defensive backfield coach in John Lovett who was last seen as Miami defensive coordinator. He was also Tuberville's defensive coordinator at Auburn for three seasons.

Offensively, Texas Tech must get back to a more balanced attack. In spite of the return of their top running back, the offensive line collectively is an untested bunch having lost three starters to graduation. But Seth Doege is no slouch and the new wide receivers will be pushing for starters reps to continue the Air Raid brand of Tech football.

Texas Tech can be a sneaky good team in 2012 but lack of proven depth and a new defensive staff changing scheme, albeit much simpler, leaves enough doubt as to their rank. Difficult to envision a +.500 record at this juncture but could easily be the big surprise in conference. That's the thing about Tech. You just never know what you'll get. -TXStampede

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Iowa State

Key departures: Kelechi Osemele (OT), Hayworth Hicks (OG), Darius Reynolds (WR), Grant Mahoney (PK), Stephen Ruempolhamer (NT), Patrick Neal (DE), Matt Tau'fo'ou (LB), Leonard Johnson (CB), Ter'Ran Benton (S)

Key returners: Steele Jantz (QB), Jared Barnett (QB), Josh Lenz (WR), Carter Bykowski (OT), A.J. Klein (LB), Jake Knott (LB), Jeremy Reeves (CB)

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 9th (63rd); Rivals - 10th (NA)

Key 2012 Signees: Damein Lawry (ATH), P.J. Harris (WR), Quan West (WR), Adam Pavlenko (LB), Grant Rohach (QB)

Summary: Paul Rhoads reminds me of the scene in the movie "When Harry Met Sally" when the lady in the restaurant tells the waitress, "I'll have what she's having." For the 3rd year in a row, Rhoads ball club pulled a big-time upset. 2012's victim was none other than conference champ Oklahoma State. And boy was it a big win.

But other than starting the year off with a 4 game winning streak, that was the lone highlight. It is just tough to pull in the level of talent to Ames needed to compete at the top of the conference. But that is not going to discourage ISU as they upped Rhoads contract last year and had additional churn on the coaching staff.

While the Cyclones lost 10 total starters to graduation, they return two fantastic quarterbacks in Jantz and Barnett. One of the bright spots on the team was hampered due to inconsistent play at the receiver position (50.4% completion rate). New wide receiver coach Todd Sturdy has his hands full in shoring up this bunch and finding a couple of reliable go-to guys in replacing departing wide-out Reynolds.

Rhoads offensive coordinator might be on the hot seat this season if he is unable to get the team manufacturing points. The Cyclones finished dead last in the conference in RZ efficiency (68.8% which was only slightly worse than Texas at 69.4%) and just slightly better than a FG per game over last place Kansas in points per game at 21.6.

Defensively the Cyclones were a middle of the pack team in conference play. Not good but certainly good enough to keep them in games long into the 4th quarter. And they return their top 3 tacklers from last season. But they also lose a couple of seasoned veterans in the defensive backfield and the linebacker position. So you'll be the judge how those even out.

Rhoads will more than likely have another big moment in 2012 but based on above it appears it might just be squeaking in under the wire for a bowl game invite. -TXStampede

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Kansas

Key departures: Jeremiah Hatch (C) and Tim Bierre (TE)

Key returners: Jordan Webb (QB), D.J. Beshears (WR), Jeff Spikes (OT)

Recruiting class rank (conference/national): 24/7 - 10th (75th); Rivals - 10th (NA)

Key 2012 Signees: Dayne Christ (QB - transfer from ND), Schyler Miles (LB), Brian Beckmann (OT), Ty McKinney (DT), Charles Brooks (TE)

Summary: Kansas was terrible last year, and they probably won't be much better next season. Turner Gill didn't do a good job, but I have serious doubts about Charlie Weis' ability to coach college football teams. Their offense was mediocre last year (which is better than downright awful, like their defense), and it might get a bit better with another year for Jordan Webb. Other than that, I still don't' see a light at the end of the tunnel. They should be at the bottom once again. -TheElusiveShadow

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