Unsolicited advice for Big 12 early entrants

December, 14, 2011
12/14/11
11:00
AM ET
Most of them have dodged it to this point, but it'll be decision time for a few underclassmen across the Big 12 at the end of the year.

Here's what each should do.

Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State: Blackmon's clearly a physical freak capable of dominating just about every college cornerback, if not all of them. He's caught 224 passes in the past two seasons and even his coach, Mike Gundy, says the two-time Fred Biletnikoff Award winner should leave. Brandon Weeden will be gone next year, too. Being honored on Senior Night and implying his decision is made makes this look like a mere formality. The Fiesta Bowl will be his last game in a Cowboy uniform.

What he should do: Enter the NFL draft

Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor: Griffin grabbed a Heisman on Saturday night, the first in Baylor's history, as well as the Davey O'Brien Trophy as the nation's top quarterback. He says his team got a taste of success last year, making a bowl for the first time since 1994, but returned for "a little dessert." What's left now? A loss in the bowl game could be the one thing that convinces RG3 to come back, but even that might not be enough. He's transformed the program, and loses his top receiver, Kendall Wright. If RG3 wants to chase a Big 12 title in what could be a wide-open race in 2012, he might come back, but without Wright, that'll be an uphill battle. Not to mention, his stock is as high as ever and will only rise further at the combine when he quantifies his athleticism and wows league brass in interviews.

What he should do: Enter the NFL draft

Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma: Jones struggled at times without Ryan Broyles, and his numbers clearly regressed from 2010 to 2011. The physical skills are there for Jones, but he still has a lot of room for growth. And though Broyles will be gone in 2011, he'll have solid targets next year in Kenny Stills and Jaz Reynolds, and a team that brings back a lot offensively. His stock is dropping, and his fiancÚ still has another year left at Oklahoma. What's the rush?

What he should do: Stay at Oklahoma for his senior year

Ronnell Lewis, DE, Oklahoma: Lewis could still grow as an athlete, but you never know what could happen between now and next season. He nearly failed to qualify academically before the season, and after injuring his knee, was suspended for Bedlam for missing class. His stock has dropped a bit, but could jump back up when NFL scouts see his raw athleticism at the combine.

What he should do: Enter the NFL draft

Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas: Vaccaro's really versatile, moving around a bit from safety to nickelback and personified the "barrel of rattlesnakes" hyperbole his new coordinator, Manny Diaz, described him as before the season. He made 68 tackles and broke up eight passes with a pair of interceptions. He started about half of 2010 and took over full-time this year, but he can further sharpen his already solid instincts with another season. Plus, he could help UT continue its bounce-back efforts from 2010. I'd have to imagine that's rewarding. Vaccaro has the measurables to leave, but it's hard to envision a scenario in which he regrets returning.

What he should do: Return to Texas for his senior year

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?

BIG 12 SCOREBOARD

Saturday, 10/25