Big 12 players in top 100: Part V

This week ESPN.com took on the monumental task of ranking the top 100 players in college football into the 2014 season. The rankings were done based on the expected contributions of each player for the 2014 season, regardless of position.

Today brings the final unveiling with Nos. 20-1. And the Big 12’s top returning player placed close to the top:

No. 7: Baylor QB Bryce Petty

Petty is very deserving of a place among the top 10 players, and he’s slated alongside impressive company, just behind Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon, and one spot ahead of Alabama wideout Amari Cooper.

Though he’s seventh overall, Petty is the fourth quarterback behind Jameis Winston, Marcus Mariota and Braxton Miller. I would have slotted Petty ahead of Miller, but the voting was very close between the two.

Petty is on the short list of Heisman Trophy contenders going into the season. If he somehow improves on his amazing 2013 passing stat line of 4,340 yards, 33 touchdowns and only three interceptions – and leads Baylor back into Big 12 title and playoff contention – he will be a factor in the Heisman race.

I hope everyone enjoyed the top 100 this week as well as our unveiling of the top 25 players in the Big 12.

Pretty soon, we'll be talking about actual games again.