Texas Tech’s quarterback position remains unclear, too, with true freshmen Davis Webb and Baker Mayfield battling to start against SMU on Friday.
Red Raiders coach Kliff Kingsbury said Monday that he normally would like to have a starter named by this point but said he isn’t against playing both freshmen against the Mustangs as neither guy has really separated.
“We’re not opposed to playing two guys,” Kingsbury said, “if we think that will help us win the game.”
The same goes for the rest of the league, apparently. Other news and notes from the Big 12 teleconference:
Stoops hints Belldozer will continue
Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops was asked several questions about Blake Bell following the Sooners decision to name Trevor Knight as the starter against Louisiana Monroe on Saturday.
Unlike previous years when the Sooners have named a starter and given him the majority of the reps in practice, Stoops said the situation will be different with Bell and Knight this season.
“Blake will continue to get reps,” he said.
The Sooners head coach also hinted that Bell could continue to play his role as the “Belldozer” in short-yardage situations. Bell rushed for 24 touchdowns in the role during the past two seasons, helping the Sooners finish second in the Big 12 in red zone efficiency, scoring touchdowns 64.8 percent of the time they ventured inside an opponent’s 20-yard line. Nonetheless, Stoops refused to say for certain if using Bell in spot situations is definitely in the Sooners’ plans this season.
“It wouldn’t make sense to tip our hand,” Stoops said.
Kansas OK with Week 1 bye
Kansas’ season doesn’t begin until next week. Usually that would bother coach Charlie Weis, but not this year.
The Jayhawks open their regular season next Saturday vs. South Dakota. Kicking off the year with a bye is fine by Weis because he’s convinced his players could use the extra preparation.
“Normally, I wouldn’t like the extra week now,” he said. “But because we have so many guys that we’re counting on who were junior college guys and just arrived here, I think it’s given us an opportunity to take this week this week and go through a simulated game week as if we’re playing this Saturday.”
Weis said “90 percent” of KU’s position battles have been decided. This week is more about giving his players time to get adjusted as classes begin Monday. Kansas will have a 7 a.m. practice on Saturday, and then the coaches will spend the day watching KU’s upcoming opponents.
“In this isolated incident, it really plays, in our case, to our advantage for us in this calendar year,” Weis said.
Baylor working on identity
Baylor is one of the few teams in the league entering the season with a settled situation at quarterback. Junior Bryce Petty will be the guy under center for the Bears after spending three years behind Robert Griffin III and Nick Florence.
Nonetheless, Baylor coach Art Briles still isn’t certain how things will play out this fall.
“We’ve talked to Bryce about creating an identity,” Briles said. “Right now, he’s an unknown. I’ve mentioned to him, ‘What are people going to say about you after you’ve played a game?’”
Petty has looked solid in the Bears’ preseason scrimmages, completing 46 of 65 passes for 582 yards and five touchdowns in three outings.