Tuesday, July 27, 2010
What to expect on Day 2 of media days
By ESPN.com staff
IRVING, Texas -- Pretty fun day on Day 1 of Big 12 media days yesterday. Our Day 1 wrap is readily available on the website with dispatches from yours truly and columnist Pat Forde, both in text and video.
Here's the lineup for Day 2: (all times ET)
10:00 Missouri: Coach Gary Pinkel, QB Blaine Gabbert, RB Derrick Washington, CB Kevin Rutland
10:45 Oklahoma State: Coach Mike Gundy, QB Brandon Weeden, LB Orie Lemon, DE Jamie Blatnick
11:30 Kansas State: Coach Bill Snyder, RB Daniel Thomas, S Tysyn Hartman, OL Zach Kendall
12:15 Texas Tech: Coach Tommy Tuberville, QB Taylor Potts, QB Steven Sheffield, DL Colby Whitlock
You can watch a live feed of the proceedings from Big12Sports.com, and the site also has archived video from earlier in the week. Nebraska, Baylor, Iowa State and Texas A&M took their turn on Monday.
Here's a look at what to expect on Tuesday:
- Missouri looks like a solid contender in the North to knock off Nebraska, so expect plenty of questions about that game -- especially since it's the last time it'll be played for awhile. Pinkel might even be peppered with questions about Missouri's historical struggles in Lincoln; its 30-year drought at Memorial Stadium came to an end in 2008. The secondary gave up plenty of big plays in 2009 and will try to improve in 2010. If they do, Rutland -- one of four returning starters in the secondary -- will be a big reason why. Look for questions for Rutland and Pinkel about how they'll do it.
- For Mike Gundy, it wouldn't shock me if he left the stage without a question about his defense, despite bringing two defenders into the one-on-one interview room next door. Believe it or not, Nebraska coach Bo Pelini accomplished that feat in Monday's formal Q&A. The story for the Cowboys is their new offense: how well Brandon Weeden knows it and can run it, how well Kendall Hunter fits into it, which receivers have meshed into it. I expect Oklahoma State's defense to be solid, probably somewhere in the 5-9 range in points allowed. Call it faith in Bill Young. But my hunch is the offense -- in both yardage and points -- looks like a big-swinging winner or loser in 2010. Top three or bottom three, depending on who figures what out when. I last visited Stillwater on the first day of spring camp. Everyone was still feeling everything out. There's surely been plenty of progression since then, but we won't get a sense of just how much until the first weekend in September.
- Kansas State is short on big names -- only Daniel Thomas made the media's All-Big 12 team -- but Hartman might be the most well-known defender and one of the best. Snyder will surely be asked his thoughts about the seemingly imminent round-robin schedule he's opposed in favor of two five-team divisions. As one of the vulnerable Forgotten Five in this summer's realignment, expect to revisit the events of June as well.
- The Red Raiders are probably the most interesting team to take the stage on Tuesday, and they'll end the day for Big 12 teams. Tuberville will hear about plenty on Tuesday, like what his defense getting torched by the team's third and fourth-string QBs this spring means in the big picture and perhaps being asked for general comments about his recent recruiting successes, since coaches can't refer to unsigned recruits by name. This should definitely be an entertaining session, and Tuberville's a pretty compelling speaker. Don't look for an encore of his comments that earned him a reprimand earlier this summer. He's already spoken on the issue a second time, and toned it down significantly.
- BCS director Bill Hancock, Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe and the conference's coordinator of football officials, Walt Anderson, will all be answering questions on Tuesday afternoon. Beebe will surely face more questions about realignment--both in the past and future -- and Anderson should hear more questions about the controversial call at the end of the Big 12 championship. In addition, he may get a few questions about the rule changes college football faces after this season. Beyond that is anyone's guess.
- Internet issues at the Westin Hotel forced some delays for our content on Monday, and there's reason to believe that'll be the case for most of today. But be sure, we will deliver the goods eventually.