Dallas Colleges: Barrett Jones

Big 12 media days live: Day 2

July, 22, 2014
Jul 22
9:40
AM CT
The Big 12 media days continue on Tuesday in Dallas, as Oklahoma's Bob Stoops and new Texas coach Charlie Strong each take the stage. Keep this page open throughout the day's proceedings as we bring you the latest from our reporters, who will cover all 10 teams at the event.

Manziel's Total QBR proves eye test correct

August, 21, 2013
8/21/13
2:30
PM CT
Nearly everyone who watched Johnny Manziel run circles around opposing defenses last season agreed that the Texas A&M star was the nation’s top quarterback in 2012.

A new statistical measure that ESPN will introduce to college football this season -- Total QBR (Quarterback Rating), which it brought to the NFL a couple of years ago -- confirms that Manziel’s 2012 performance did more than just pass the eye test.

Of the 122 qualified quarterbacks, the Heisman Trophy winner led the nation with a 90.5 Total QBR.

Here is a primer on the similar NFL QBR, which explains how the metric attempts to explain everything a quarterback does: running, passing, sacks, fumbles and penalties. It measures a player on a 1-100 scale, where 50 is average.

Sharon Katz of ESPN Stats and Information recently explained how Total QBR is an important measuring stick for teams harboring BCS championship hopes. Four of the last five quarterbacks who helped their teams win the BCS title ranked in the nation’s top eight in QBR.

That might be an important statistic to watch for the six SEC teams who are ranked in the top 12 in the Associated Press preseason poll: No. 1 Alabama (AJ McCarron was eighth nationally last season with an 81.1 QBR), No. 5 Georgia (Aaron Murray, 13th with 78.4), No. 6 South Carolina (Connor Shaw, 38th with 64.6), No. 7 Texas A&M (Manziel), No. 10 Florida (Jeff Driskel, 51st with 59.1) and No. 12 LSU (Zach Mettenberger, 80th with 47.0).

If the annual QBR trends hold true, some of those players must considerably improve their consistency if their team is to snatch a spot in the championship game in Pasadena.

McCarron, however, might simply need to hold steady in order to lead the defending champion Crimson Tide to yet another spot in the title game. That could prove trickier than one might expect for Alabama’s senior star, who has a wealth of skill talent at his disposal, but will line up behind a rebuilt offensive line this fall.

In a recent blog post, ESPN.com’s Tobin Petipas examined the Tide’s o-line from 2012 -- a group that featured the same starting five in all 14 games and ranked among the most dominant offensive fronts in recent memory. Three starters -- D.J. Fluker, Chance Warmack and Barrett Jones -- became 2013 NFL draft picks, leaving behind only elite NFL prospect Cyrus Kouandijo at left tackle and right guard Anthony Steen, who was actually the only member of the group who did not commit a penalty or allow a sack last season.

Nonetheless, it will be difficult for Alabama’s rebuilt offensive line to provide the same dominant effort that allowed McCarron and the Tide’s running backs to perform so effectively in 2012. Alabama’s running backs averaged an SEC-high 4.1 yards per carry before first contact and were not touched until five yards past the line of scrimmage on a whopping 34.6 percent of their carries thanks in large part to the big holes the offensive line created.

Further, McCarron passed for 13 touchdowns and no interceptions off play-action fakes last season, largely because of the fear that Alabama’s rushing attack struck into opponents’ hearts.

New offensive line coach Mario Cristobal has no shortage of talent at his disposal, but his two returning starters are the only players in his meeting room who have started a game.

The Tide’s rushing production and McCarron’s Total QBR numbers could slide if Cristobal’s line struggles to adjust, but we should learn quickly how much of a concern the line will be for Nick Saban’s club. Alabama opens against a typically stout Virginia Tech defense, which ranked in the top six in FBS in negative plays forced and quarterback pressures (hurries and knockdowns) last fall.

Kiper's Big Board entering NFL combine

February, 22, 2013
2/22/13
2:00
PM CT
Players are gathering in Indianapolis, so that means this year's NFL combine is officially underway. The first two days are all about the interviews and eye tests, while the on-field workouts begin Saturday.

But before any of them stepped foot in Indy, ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. released his pre-Combine Big Board Insider. Naturally, it's loaded with SEC players. Twelve of the 25 players on Kiper's Big Board are from the SEC, including six of the top 10 players.

Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones kept his place in the No. 1 spot, while Texas A&M offensive tackle Luke Joeckel jumped in front of teammate Damontre Moore to move from No. 3 to No. 2.

Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd made a major move up Kiper's rankings, moving from No. 15 to No. 8.

Here's where all 12 SEC players ranked on Kiper's Big Board heading into the Combine:

1. Jarvis Jones, LB, Georgia

2. Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M

3. Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M

6. Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama

8. Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida

10. Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama

12. Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU

15. Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri

16. D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama

18. Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia

21. Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee

25. Matt Elam, S, Florida

Kiper also updated his position rankings Insider this week. Twenty-eight SEC players made Kiper's position rankings, and the league was represented by at least one player at every position, except fullback.

Here's where Kiper put SEC players in his position rankings:

Quarterbacks

4. Tyler Wilson, Arkansas

Running backs

1. Eddie Lacy, Alabama

5. Marcus Lattimore, South Carolina

Fullbacks

None

Wide receivers

1. Cordarrelle Patterson, Tennessee

Tight ends

3. Jordan Reed, Florida

Offensive tackles

1. Luke Joeckel, Texas A&M

3. D.J. Fluker, Alabama

Offensive guards

1. Chance Warmack, Alabama

3. Larry Warford, Kentucky

4. Dallas Thomas, Tennessee

Centers

2. Barrett Jones, Alabama

Defensive ends

1. Damontre Moore, Texas A&M

4. Barkevious Mingo, LSU

Defensive tackles

2. Sharrif Floyd, Florida

3. Sheldon Richardson, Missouri

Inside linebackers

1. Alec Ogletree, Georgia

3. Kevin Minter, LSU

5. Jon Bostic, Florida

Outside linebackers

1. Jarvis Jones, Georgia

4. Zaviar Gooden, Missouri

5. Cornelius Washington, Georgia

Cornerbacks

1. Dee Milliner, Alabama

3. Johnthan Banks, Mississippi State

Safeties

2. Matt Elam, Florida

4. Eric Reid, LSU

5. D.J. Swearinger, South Carolina

Kickers

2. Caleb Sturgis, Florida

Punters

2. Brad Wing, LSU

Previewing the 2012 SEC media days

July, 16, 2012
7/16/12
12:53
PM CT

It's almost time for hundreds of media folk to pile into a swanky ballroom and kick off another year of SEC media days.

The festivities begin Tuesday at the Wynfrey Hotel in Hoover, Ala., and last until Thursday afternoon. The event serves as the unofficial kickoff to SEC football season.

So what should we be on the lookout for this year?

Well, the biggest news is all the star power that won't be making the trip. Two of the league's top rushers -- Marcus Lattimore and Christine Michael -- won't be in town. Yes, they are both coming off season-ending injuries, but so is Arkansas' Knile Davis, and he'll be in attendance.

One of the league's best, Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray won't be in Hoover, either. Nor will Bulldogs wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell.

Some other big names not on the list include Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron, LSU cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney and Missouri quarterback James Franklin.

There are a lot of interesting storylines revolving around all those players, who serve as faces for their respective programs, and it's disappointing that they won't be around this week.

However, some quality names are on this year's roster, including Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones, Alabama offensive lineman Barrett Jones, Arkansas quarterback Tyler Wilson, Texas A&M linebacker Sean Porter, Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray and South Carolina quarterback Connor Shaw.

I'm sure they'll all have plenty to say and should keep us all entertained.

Here are some other things to keep an eye on this week:
  • If you're coming into town, make sure you bring your protective gear for Thursday. That's when Alabama's up, and you'd better believe the lobby will be jam-packed with Tide fans. They come out in full force and expect things to be even tighter this year after that championship.
  • Arkansas players will have to answer a lot of questions surrounding their former coach, Bobby Petrino. How much of a distraction will his exit be this fall?
  • Also, what will new Arkansas coach John L. Smith say? He sure knows how to make a news conference exciting, so don't expect anything to be different in front of all those SEC scribes.
  • One coach not afraid to put on a show while at the podium is South Carolina's Steve Spurrier. The Head Ball Coach has been chirping this year, and he probably won't stop in Hoover.
  • Last year, there were a lot of questions about the quarterback talent in this league. This year, that isn't the case, as the league is as plentiful at the position as it has been in years.
  • Although only Davis will be in town, expect a lot of talk about three of the league's best running backs all coming off major, season-ending injuries.
  • Georgia has had an eventful offseason away from the field, and it's time to see how players and coach Mark Richt are feeling about all of the silly distractions. Also, what's in store for the Bulldogs' running game now that Isaiah Crowell is gone?
  • I wonder how many times Nick Saban and his players will be asked questions about comparisons to the 2010 team. You know how much Saban loves comparison talk. ...
  • Tennessee coach Derek Dooley should field a lot of questions about his job security this week. Regardless of how you feel about the time he's had and all the issues he's had to deal with, his seat is hotter than ever.
  • Texas A&M and Missouri are now officially members of the SEC. How will their players and coaches react to being surrounded by all those SEC writers? And how many more questions will they get about adjusting to their new conference?
  • LSU was on top of the college football world until last year's national championship. The Tigers bring back a boatload of talent, but can they finish things this year?
  • The good news for Auburn, South Carolina and Tennessee is their coaches won't have to deal with NCAA questions, unlike last year.

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