Thursday, January 17, 2013
Taking stock of who's in, out of NFL draft
By David Ubben
Colleague Mel Kiper Jr. weighed in with a "good call/bad call" column this week, but the only Big 12 player mentioned was Oklahoma safety Tony Jefferson, and Kiper Jr. liked Jefferson's decision to enter the draft. Here are the Big 12 players who are going and staying in 2013.
Heading to the draft
Jefferson, S, Oklahoma: Probably the Big 12's best early entry prospect, he made 119 tackles this season. Expect the California native to go in the first two rounds.
Joseph Randle, RB, Oklahoma State: Randle has led the Big 12 in rushing in each of the past two seasons, and felt the need to cash in now after producing a 1,400-yard season despite turnover at quarterback.
Stedman Bailey, WR, West Virginia: He led the nation with 25 touchdown catches. He is getting out of Morgantown as the Mountaineers shift to a new quarterback after Geno Smith graduated.
Kenny Stills, WR, Oklahoma: He is disappointed with his 2012 season and leaves Oklahoma without a 1,000-yard season, but he improved in all three seasons in Norman.
Josh Boyce, WR, TCU: Boyce didn't produce a 1,000-yard season in his career, and it was a mild surprise that he left early. TCU's receiving corps will still be OK with Brandon Carter and LaDarius Brown.
Stansly Maponga, DE, TCU: Maponga's decision came late and out of nowhere. Most didn't think he was even pondering an early entry after a disappointing 2012.
Brandon Moore, DT, Texas: Moore started less than half the season, but the juco transfer made it a one-and-done stop in Austin. He never quite reached the hype from the spring, but he was a good contributor.
Tom Wort, LB, Oklahoma: Plenty of rumbling that he was unhappy with the defensive schemes and wanted to leave Oklahoma because the gap responsibility didn't showcase his skills. He had about 20 fewer tackles this season than in 2011.
Staying in college:
James Sims, RB, Kansas: Sims was one of the Big 12's best backs and led KU in rushing each of the past two seasons. KU has given him a ton of carries, but he's signing up for another year of it, and an attempt to win a Big 12 game.
Aaron Colvin, CB, Oklahoma: Colvin will be the Sooners' best player next season, and the lone returner in the secondary with an interception.
Mike Davis, WR, Texas: Davis flip-flopped a couple times, but ended up staying at Texas. The Longhorns' offense needed him, and surely David Ash and Major Applewhite were big fans of this decision.
Jason Verrett, CB, TCU: Verrett might just be the nation's best cornerback next season, and he'll be a huge piece of TCU's defense in 2013, which could be one of the nation's best next season, too.
Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State: Gilbert's 2012 was a disappointment, but he's still a physical freak. He'll have another year likely returning kicks, and it's hard to see 2013 going worse than this season.