We talked offense last week, but what about the Big 12's best defensive player?
The Big 12's preseason awards won't be handed out until next month, but let's see about the fan vote. Who should be the Big 12 Preseason Defensive Player of the Year?
Devonte Fields, DE, TCU: Fields won the postseason award in 2012 as a true freshman and returns for an encore in 2013. He's the favorite to earn the nod next month after leading the Big 12 with 18.5 tackles for loss last season and finishing third with 10 sacks. Two things could knock him off his perch: He's suspended for the first two games of 2013 and in TCU's final six games, he had just 4.5 tackles for loss and two sacks.
Jackson Jeffcoat, DE, Texas: Jeffcoat might be the league's most physically impressive talent, but injuries have kept him from reaching his potential. He made 12 sacks in his first 13 career games, but he missed half of last year with a torn pectoral. He had 11 tackles for loss and four sacks in those first six games, but the former No. 1 overall recruit is dreaming big for his senior season in 2013.
Jason Verrett, CB, TCU: Verrett was the Big 12's best cornerback last season, emerging from almost no preseason attention at a loaded position a year ago. He was third nationally in passes defended and earned All-America honors with six interceptions and 16 pass breakups. He added 63 tackles and earned his reputation as an elite corner taking on a tough set of receivers in the Big 12 a season ago.
Ty Zimmerman, S, Kansas State: The rest of Kansas State's defense was decimated, but Zimmerman will try and hold it together after linebacker Arthur Brown, the entire defensive line and both cornerbacks exhausted their eligibility. His absence didn't help K-State in its perfect season-ruining loss to Baylor, and a leg injury cost him the last two games of the regular season. He picked off five balls and scooped up a fumble last year. He'll be counted on for even more this season.
Aaron Colvin, CB, Oklahoma: Colvin's already hearing NFL hype attached to his name, but the experienced Sooner is a third-year starter from nearby Tulsa who picked off four passes and broke up 11 more last season. The 6-foot, 181-pounder plays physical on the outside and spent some time at safety in 2011 after starting his career at corner in 2010. He's back at corner now, and has a chance to state his case as the Big 12's best.
Who's your vote? Make yourself heard in our poll.