Ranking the Big 12's top 25 players: No. 21

August, 3, 2012
8/03/12
2:30
PM ET
Our official list of the Big 12's top 25 players entering the 2012 season marches on. Here's more on my criteria for who makes it, who doesn't, and who lands where.

The official list is locked away in a vault in an undisclosed location, but we'll be revealing one player a day leading up to the season.

Next up on the list:

No. 21: Cyril Richardson, OG, Baylor

2011 numbers: Helped Baylor lead the Big 12 in total offense. Was third on the team with 70 knockdowns, and graded out at an average of 80.8 percent on the season.

Most recent ranking: Richardson was unranked in our postseason list of the Big 12's top 25 players.

Making the case for Richardson: Versatility always gives a boost to any offensive lineman's stock, and Richardson's proving that this offseason. As a sophomore, he started at left tackle for all 13 games of Baylor's historic 2011 season, but he's on the move this offseason, shifting over to guard for his junior season.

He started four games there and appeared in 12 during the 2010 season, but became a huge piece of one of the league's best offensive lines last season at tackle. Now, he's on the move again. Impressive stuff for the 6-foot-5, 335-pound Fort Worth, Texas native. Baylor has sent a string of offensive linemen to the NFL that's only getting longer. Jason Smith started it, but it's continued with Danny Watkins, J.D. Walton, Philip Blake and Robert T. Griffin.

Expect Richardson to join that group soon. He earned All-Big 12 honorable mention last season, but he might state a case as the league's best offensive lineman by the time this season is done. Guarding the blind side for a Heisman winner is a bit more glamorous than playing guard for a relative unknown in new quarterback Nick Florence, but you're still going to get the same production out of the big man. Probably better.

The rest of the list:

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