Chat with David Ubben
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday, ESPN.com Big 12 blogger David Ubben will stop by to chat some college football.
Ubben joined ESPN.com in March 2010 after covering Big 12 football for two seasons at the Columbia Missourian and The Oklahoman. Ubben, a native of Springdale, Ark., lives in Dallas.
Send your questions now and join Ubben Tuesday at 3 p.m. ET!
David Ubben (3:00 PM)
It's that time again. Fire away.
Sean (Lincoln, NE)
David, do you think that the Big XII is a stronger conference than people give it credit for? Lots of undefeated teams that are better than their rankings it seems.
David Ubben (3:03 PM)
Well, like I wrote today, it has pretty good depth, but ultimately, conferences are judged by the teams at the top, and the number of nationally relevant games it plays. The Red River Rivalry over the weekend barely counted, and now the Texas-Nebraska game looks like it won't be nearly as big as it looked over the summer. The only "big" game left as it stands is the Big 12 title game, but it teams like Oklahoma State, Missouri and Kansas State keep winning, the Big 12 could sneak a couple more teams into the top 20 or top 15 and change that.
Optimistic Ag (Houston)
DU, never in a million years did I think Jerrod would be the person holding the Aggies back from greatness. If he plays mediocre are we better??
David Ubben (3:05 PM)
Me either. I talked to him this morning about it, look for a story tomorrow.
Rodney Dangerfield (Columbia, MO)
Missouri get's no respect in the polls...
David Ubben (3:05 PM)
Because they haven't played anyone. Keep winning in conference and the votes will come.
David, could you break down the realistic best/worst case scenarios for OSU the rest of the season please? Thanks!
David Ubben (3:08 PM)
Honestly, OSU has an outside shot to run the table. Texas has been underwhelming and the Cowboys get Nebraska and Oklahoma in Stillwater. The hard part is showing up every single week, which Oklahoma State hasn't had a history of doing, even as recently as last year when they lost to Houston. There are a lot of teams in the Big 12 capable of beating anyone else on any given weekend, and Oklahoma State has to play better than it did on Thursday night to really pick up steam.
Dan (3rd Row Back)
Dave, you've probably got a post coming regarding this, but what's your pick for the Huskers-Wildcats on Thursday?
David Ubben (3:10 PM)
I do. It'll be posted on Thursday.
should i spend the money to go to the game at the cotton bowl this weekend? will the game be worth it?
David Ubben (3:12 PM)
You should. Expect a great game, and you can't beat football at the state fair. A unique experience for sure.
David, how much will Mizzou be affected by not having Aldon Smith available on Saturday?
David Ubben (3:14 PM)
It hurts, but Missouri doesn't need him to beat Colorado. They opened as nearly two-touchdown favorites and Colorado hasn't been able to stop Missouri's spread for quite awhile. The thing that hurts Smith is he had his best game last year against the best left tackle in the Big 12, Nate Solder. Three sacks for him in Boulder, and I'm sure he and Solder were ready to go at it again this year. He'll be back eventually. Missouri will need him against Oklahoma.
David Ubben (3:15 PM)
Maybe against Texas A&M, too.
David, you're pretty hard on Mizzou's schedule. They beat Illinois, on a nuetral field, by about the same margin Ohio State did, and San Diego State is a good team, whether you want to admit it or not. I don't see you criticizing Nebraska for their complete cupcake schedule.
David Ubben (3:19 PM)
Nebraska went on the road against a BCS conference team and beat them by five touchdowns. It's not their fault Washington has been underwhelming. Illinois isn't very good, and Ohio State did that on the road. San Diego State has been pretty good this year, but when that's your marquee win of the nonconference and it came on a 68-yard touchdown in the final minute? Don't worry about scheduling criticisms at this point in the season. Win, and Missouri will get it's due. But that schedule is the reason why Missouri is 4-0 and just now entering both polls.
Travis (Murrieta, CA)
Many Jayhawk fans are already calling for Gill' job. I'm not one of them. How long do you think an institution owes a coach to get his system and players installed before questioning his competence and do you think Gill has the chops to eventually get the KU program in a positive direction?
David Ubben (3:21 PM)
Three years. I'm with you. Give Gill time. I said it all year and I'm sticking with it: Kansas is the least talented team in the Big 12. Dispute that with recruiting rankings all you want, but for as many great players as Oklahoma and Texas have had, they can tell you, not every four-star guy ends up being a major contributor. I'll take what I see on the field over some grainy high school tape of kids looking like a bunch of Reggie Bushes.
why exactly is everyone under estimating a Bill Snyder coached football team?
David Ubben (3:23 PM)
Don't look at me. I said it all spring. If you can run the ball like Kansas State can and you have a coach like Snyder, you'll be alright. Some of the preseason picks with Kansas State at like 85 or 90 or last in the South were crazy.
David Ubben (3:23 PM)
Last in the North, that is.
Are you giddy with glee that K-State is doing well and maybe living up to all your pre-season hype? We still haven't started conference play, Mr. Ubben, so hold your breath.
David Ubben (3:27 PM)
Ha, I'd hardly say picking a team third in the North was hyping them, but plenty of people were tagging them as a team who had no shot to go to a bowl this year. That was crazy. I still think Missouri will probably end up being better than them, but right now, Kansas State has a better resume.
Kendall Hunter (Stillwater, Ok)
David, I'm happy with my teams success but why am I not getting more touches when the o is struggling?
David Ubben (3:29 PM)
Great question. I wondered the same thing myself while Brandon Weeden was getting whacked around every other play in the first half. Good thing the Cowboys fixed it in the second half. You're clearly the best player on that offense and the most consistent source of offense.
Kansas's head coach-Coach Gill- has a rule that his players aren't allowed to see women after 10 p.m. the night before games. Is this legit?
David Ubben (3:31 PM)
It is. I don't really have any strong opinions on it either way, but I can see why it might frustrate players, even if it's hard to enforce. But like I said yesterday, I believe him when he says it's not a big deal. Players haven't been complaining, we haven't seen massive transfers and we're JUST NOW hearing about it. That says a lot. However, one of the K-State beat writers tweeted the other night, "So much for watching the weather report with Mom."
How should the people who paid $500+ for tickets to the Nebraska Texas game be feeling right about now...
David Ubben (3:32 PM)
Like they should hit up eBay and cut their losses.
At this point in the season, who do you feel are the most under rated and over rated teams in the Big 12?
David Ubben (3:34 PM)
Ha. Underrated, I'll say Missouri or maybe even Texas, with the way people have kind of piled on them this week. They'll rebound when the schedule gets easier late in the year and finish in the top 25. They're a borderline top 20 team this year. Overrated, I don't really think there are any. I don't see Nebraska or Oklahoma going undefeated, but I do think they're both top 10 teams.
Joe Moglia (Lincoln)
David, I'll give you $100k if you wear a Nebraska shirt to the NU-UT game.
David Ubben (3:34 PM)
Demarco Murray (Norman, OK)
You should try yoga. It really works!
David Ubben (3:36 PM)
Ha, that was impressive balance on the sideline tiptoe and flip to score. Must be the yoga. Or shoes. Or Wheaties or something.
is a big 12 team gunna be in the bcs champ. game this year?
David Ubben (3:37 PM)
Oklahoma and Nebraska are in the hunt. Oklahoma State could pick up steam if they keep winning. They've got a lot of big games ahead of them. But I don't see a bona fide championship contender in the Big 12. Lots of flaws everywhere. I mentioned this last week, but really, think back about 2009 Texas and 2008 Oklahoma. How much better were those teams than any team in the Big 12 this year? A whole lot better.
How in the world is Ok. State ranked 22nd? They barely beat a very weak A&M team - look at the teams A
David Ubben (3:39 PM)
4-0. Lots of big numbers in their favor. Only close game in nonconference was because of turnovers. K-State is the only undefeated team that isn't ranked. They aren't ranked because they don't have any of those big numbers and the only team they've blown out is Missouri State.
Brant (Fort Worth, TX)
Landry Jones looks to get flustered more this year than last. Do you see the same thing?
David Ubben (3:40 PM)
Absolutely not. What games are you watching? The fumble at the end of the Texas game was a miscommunication and he turned to hand it off to a running back who didn't think he was getting it. He's been fine. Career lows in interceptions. Career highs in completion percentage.
do you think the 2 td win isu had against texas tech is a sign iowa state is changing for the better or just a fluke?
David Ubben (3:43 PM)
Combination of great play by Iowa State and a slow transition to an aggressive style for Texas Tech. You knew with the same personnel running a different style, they'd give up big plays early in the season. That has to be fixed. Iowa State is better this year than they were last year. Texas Tech is clearly not as good at this point in the season.
better chance for a bowl game this yr, BU or TT?
David Ubben (3:45 PM)
If I had to bet my life on it, I think both teams end up in a bowl. But right now, there's no question, Baylor is playing better football than Texas Tech.
Niles Paul (Lincoln)
Hey David- Why are people still double covering me? Brandon Kinnie shows on a weekly basis that he has better ball security, and I am usually good for at least a fumble a game. Shouldn't I be getting more oppportunities?
David Ubben (3:49 PM)
Niles Paul is a pretty big enigma. He pretty clearly passes the eye test, but the production isn't there. Part of that was the conservative offense last year, but this year, Kinnie and Mike McNeill are getting it done. Those throws are limited anyway. Nebraska's best offensive option right now is Taylor Martinez running the ball.
Does the win over Georgia show that Colorado is improving? Or is Georgia just not good at all?
David Ubben (3:49 PM)
A little of both. Colorado's surprised me a little this year, and they're winning close games they didn't win last year, but yeah, don't get too excited just yet. Georgia isn't very good.
Andrew Rollo (San Diego)
Baylor played a great game last saturday against Kansas. They are 4-1. They look like a much better and improved team than previous years. But do you really think they have a legitimate shot in the rest of their games? I know Baylor fans are talking bowl bid, but I'm just afraid they are going to tank in the rest of their games and be a disappoinment.
David Ubben (3:51 PM)
Feel that way if you'd like, but Baylor is more than Robert Griffin. Their defense continues to be underrated because of the blowout to TCU. Outside of that loss, they've given up two touchdowns in four games.
No women after 10:00 pre game night at Kansas? I'll bet that's going over well with the spouses of the married players. Can you imagine that conversation? It's just silly.
David Ubben (3:53 PM)
Ha, that question wasn't asked on Monday, but I assume the rule is waived for married players. The whole idea is respecting women and doing things the right way, and I'd say leaving your wife alone after 10 p.m. would fly in the face of that policy.
Hey david, i go to baylor, my dad is an aggie, can i start trash talking yet?
David Ubben (3:55 PM)
I'd hold off on that. Remember, Texas A&M's only loss came on the road to a ranked team by a last-second field goal and they had five turnovers, including one for a touchdown. On the whole, Texas A
The OSU defense has been taking some blows in the media, but honestly I don't think they've looked bad. The opponents high scoring average also has a lot do to with the second string seeing extended playing time in the Wash. St. and Tulsa games and our offense turning the ball over in our opponent's red zone in the Troy and atm game. What's your take on the OSU defense?
David Ubben (3:57 PM)
Yeah, they're kind of getting a bad rap. They've got talent all over, and the complementary guys around Chinasa, Lemon and Martin are getting it done. Losing Victor Johnson is a big loss, but outside of the Troy game, which was aided by turnovers, they've been OK. Around average. When your offense is putting up the kind of numbers Oklahoma State's is, the defense can be average.
Jess (Dewar Oklahoma)
Will OU defeat B.Y.E. we hold a long impressive streak against them..
David Ubben (3:58 PM)
We'll see. BYU snagged the Sooners last year, but you'll have to wait for my picks to see if Oklahoma can survive BYE.
David, if OU is undefeated when the BCS poll comes out, where do you see them ranked? This just doesn't feel like a championship caliber team but then again there doesn't seem to be an elite team that looks unbeatable.
David Ubben (3:59 PM)
It'll depend on who loses above them. A bye week and a win over Iowa State isn't going to lead to a leap frog over anyone for Oklahoma.
Hank Hill (Arlen, TX)
Do you think it is just a matter of time before Texas pulls a BYU and tries to become the next Notre Dame?
David Ubben (4:00 PM)
They could probably do it in theory, but the best place for them is in the Big 12. They looked at independence over the summer and obviously made a different choice. Don't look for that to change any time soon. Texas is best in a conference.
David Ubben (4:00 PM)
Thanks for the questions everybody. See you again next week.
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