I have never been so relieved it's a Friday in my life. A much needed weekend is upon us. And another football game. Let's tackle the four questions.
1. With Limas Sweed out for the year, Texas needs someone to step up and be able to make big plays down the field to stretch the defense. Who's a better candidate for that job - Jordan Shipley or Billy Pittman?
I think it's probably Shipley. It was great seeing BP out there again contributing to the team, and he hauled in five catches against the Cyclones. Those five grabs only netted him 36 yards though and we haven't seen any big plays from him since Vince Young left for the pros. Whether those two had some sort of special connection or it was just a bit of an anomalous season, I don't know. I do think that we might see Colt and Shipley develop something similar. It sure would be nice, anyway. Shipley's not the physical beast that Limas Sweed is, but he runs the best routes on the team and finds openings in the defense.
2. The changing of the guard may not be happening at quite the pace that we'd like, but it's underway nonetheless. Which of these emerging young players are you most excited about for the rest of this season? For next season? Choices: Sergio Kindle, Jared Norton, Rodderick Muckelroy, Deon Beasley, Michael Huey. (Note: Lamarr Houston is excluded as injuries got him the playing time he needed to showcase his freakdom.)
Kindle-Kindle-Kindle. The last half of this season is going to be fun to watch for a number of reasons, but chief among them may be the rebirth of Derrick Johnson at outside linebacker. Sergio's still pretty damn raw around the edges and he's wreaking havoc. As he gets more efficient and starts to sniff out plays better, he's going to be a tackling monster. And the kind of linebacker who winds up influencing turnovers. Just like DJ.
3. Stories emerged early this week that Colt McCoy assumed a different kind of leadership role following the loss to Oklahoma. He played his best game of the year against Iowa State. Your feelings about Colt the rest of the season? Are you optimistic he and the team will turn a corner?
I'm happy to hear Colt got fired up and demanded better from himself and his teammates. That was clearly lacking. I'm not gonna get too carried away with results in Ames, though. Nor Waco. Consider me hopeful, consider me a fan. Just a cautious one.
4. Prediction for the game.
Q: If you're a Big 12 underdog, what's the one game you don't want to see on your schedule?
A: Texas soon after a loss to Oklahoma.
The 'Horns have rebounded from disappointing OU losses to utterly destroy inferior Big 12 teams in years past and again this year so far with a dismantling of Iowa State. Baylor looks equally outmatched and Texas looks hungry to get on a roll heading down the back stretch. Hey, better late than never.
Don't forget to make your picks in our ESPN pick 'em league. Your humble host blew it last week, made his picks, and didn't click submit. My 0 score knocked me way out of the top 10 and off the first page leaderboard. Good luck to everyone else.