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 (3:01 PM)
What's up, everybody? Let's get started. What's on your minds this week? Fire away. We'll get to a ton of questions today.
Best QB in B12 next season including WVU? Can Gino Win the H? And, is TX on a downward spirl? So much success and they really looked bad last year. TX record this year?
David Ubben (3:02 PM)
A lot of questions in there, Mike. I'll hit on them all quick. Yeah, it's possible for Geno Smith to win the Heisman. He's definitely a dark horse, but WVU is good enough to win now, and good enough to win 11-12 games next year. That would put him on the short list as long as he's putting up big numbers. No, Texas isn't on a downward spiral. I'd say they got lazy in recruiting evaluation offensively and it's set them back. The Longhorns are on the way back, though. I'll take nine wins for Texas next year.
David Ubben (3:03 PM)
No clue. The Sooners already have a ton of great talents in this class. They'd love to have him, but he's no dealbreaker. You never know with teenagers making big decisions.
Chris (Manhattan, KS)
Oh Sage of the Midwestern Gridiron, what position for K-State should we keep our eyes on during spring camp? And When will we officially know who our new D-coordinator is?
David Ubben (3:04 PM)
Definitely the offensive line. That's the biggest concern with the amount of talent lost from last year's team. Collin Klein is tough and all, but he's not all that elusive. He's tough to bring down, but if there aren't any holes or 2-3 guys are in the backfield all the time, he's going to look pretty bad next year. As for the D-coordinator, that's on Bill Snyder's schedule now.
Any chance Louisville changes conferences this year? Not next?
David Ubben (3:07 PM)
I wouldn't count on it happening any time soon. There's just not any momentum in the Big 12 to add any teams. UL makes the most sense, maybe along with Cincinnati to give the league 12 teams again, but there's no guarantee those teams warrant entrance on a fiscal level.
Concerned Blogger (Big 12 Country)
Mr. David, Have you heard of a confirmed release date of the schedules yet. And if you have when will it happen?
David Ubben (3:07 PM)
I was told today or tomorrow. We'll see. I'd be shocked if it wasn't sometime this week.
Bobby (Joplin Mo)
David, have you any idea what the exit fees are going to be for my Tigers and aTm as well?
David Ubben (3:08 PM)
I'd expect them to be a good chunk higher than Nebraska and Colorado, but still nowhere near the $30-some million that the Big 12 bylaws require.
David Ubben (3:10 PM)
If you say so, Jason. I'd say you're pretty high on TTU. Much higher than I am, certainly. And very low on Baylor.
From your post last week, it seems like quite a few elite kids from Texas are currently committed to TAMU for 2013. Given that Texas hasn't had its junior day and (as far as I can tell) only 1 kid that got an offer from TAMU and Texas went to TAMU in the 2012 class, how do you see that playing out.
David Ubben (3:11 PM)
A&M recruiting from the SEC against Texas is going to be interesting. I think the Longhorns will still win out, but it's going to be much more interesting than it was when the Ags were in the Big 12. I'd expect those battles to get a lot more heated.
One of top pairs of football mantras is defense wins championships and you have to run the ball -- Texas' defense will be the leader in both at the gate. I think I saw you too early power rankings with Texas at 6 -- is this is the Big 12 team with the most upside?
David Ubben (3:14 PM)
Yeah, probably. Generally, that's true, Dave, but in the Big 12, the importance of the QB outweighs everything. That's Texas' biggest obvious weakness. To me, the Longhorns look like a national title contender if they had a QB that was above average or better. They don't. They have the worst QBs in the Big 12 right now. As such, they're a borderline top 20 team heading into next year. Development will be huge, and specifically at that position.
Looking ahead, do the Cats have a darkhorse National Title shot? Early on if they can beat Miami, it would get the nation real serious about them. What do you think?
David Ubben (3:15 PM)
I'd be surprised to see it, but if Collin Klein develops into a much better passer, it's possible. I'm not sure they have the talent across the board or the depth to run the table, but they look like a 10-win team coming back.
Littlejohn (Manhattan, KS)
David: Mike Stoops' availability as a defensive coordinator didn't draw much interest, at least publicly. It almost appears as if his brother hired him at Oklahoma to keep him employed. He would command a high price but was there really any interest in him nationwide? Thanks.
David Ubben (3:17 PM)
I don't know what you're smoking, Littlejohn. Everybody and their mom wanted Mike Stoops. Ohio State and Nebraska? He wanted to go somewhere he knew he'd enjoy coaching. Where's better than a place he'd called home before and a place he could coach with his brother? He'll be happy at OU.
Joe (Ames, Iowa)
A lot of Cyclone fans have seen VERY early power rankings for 2012 with Texas Tech ahead of them. I know Tech returns more starters than any other team and had a great recruiting class, but do you believe that Tech will actually be better than Iowa State next year?
David Ubben (3:18 PM)
What do you think about the Big XII schools blacklisting A&M?
David Ubben (3:19 PM)
I mean ... I get it. I think it's nothing more than petty, but I get it. From the institutional perspective, I can see why they want to do it. From a fan of the game's perspective, I hate, hate, hate it. What's the point of college football if games like Texas A&M-Texas and Mizzou-Kansas aren't being played?
John (Waco, TX)
When you get rid of the Mizzou and Texas A&M clubhouse links on the side, are you going to replace them with TCU AND West Virginia links?
David Ubben (3:21 PM)
Eventually. WVU's entrance into this blog, like it's entrance into the Big 12, is going to be a little delayed until it's officially officially official.
David - Any news on the new DC for K-State?
David Ubben (3:23 PM)
Bill Snyder has his man. He just won't tell us who it is. If Snyder had his way, no one would know anyone ever associated with K-State's program. Tougher to scout that way.
K-State was able to win 10 games without elite play from the QB. Alabama and LSU played for a national championship without elite QB play. Texas has a great defense, why can't they return to 10-win form?
David Ubben (3:25 PM)
K-State strung together an unbelievable run of late-game execution. In most scenarios, K-State wins eight games last year. The SEC, if you hadn't noticed, is a much, much different league than the Big 12. Find me the last Big 12 champion who won it without, at least, above average QB play. Paul Thompson maybe?
David Ubben (3:26 PM)
That team, it's worth noting, had Adrian Peterson on it.
Brady (Fort worth, tx)
who wins at the cotton bowl next season?
David Ubben (3:27 PM)
Justin (Columbia, MO)
David,If not next year, do you see Kansas eventually reconsidering the rivalry with Missouri?Thanks!
David Ubben (3:28 PM)
Yeah, I think after awhile, when the current administrators at all these schools clear out and the wounds from these breakups heal, we'll see these games played again. Why? Because fans of both teams want them.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
With Metoyer being able to participate in spring ball does that make him the odds on favorite to step in and have the most immediate impact of the incoming receiver group? Also, given the little bit of uncertainty with Reynolds, and other potential injury, does Stoops need two of these stud receivers to produce consistently on the outside next season?
David Ubben (3:30 PM)
Yeah, I'd agree with that, Tony. It's pretty simple. We saw Kenny Stills do the same thing before the 2010 season. Looked like a stud in the spring. Delivered in the fall. Transitioning to a No. 1 guy was tough for him at the end of the year, but he's got tons of talent. The offseason could eliminate those struggles. OU needs one of those guys to ascend to elite status.
I know you've seen a leaked copy of the 2012 schedule -- just tell me as a Texas fan if I should start planning a fall day-trip to Morgantown?
David Ubben (3:32 PM)
Ha. I haven't actually. I wouldn't plan a thing just yet.
Ted (San Antonio)
Ubben, What do you think of Texas Tech next year? 2-3 years from now?
David Ubben (3:33 PM)
Tech should be better, but even coach Tommy Tuberville admitted to me the injuries last year will stunt this team's growth for now. The Red Raiders look like they could maybe be an eight-win team next year. The league should be pretty deep. It's going to be tough. If Tech had won eight games this year, they'd have had a shot to be a darkhorse title contender. I'm not so sure anymore.
Are you ever going to do the Wildcat's report card or will you just ignore them like you do a lot of the time.
David Ubben (3:34 PM)
Chill, K-Staters. I'll get to it pretty soon.
Hey Ubbs, can you DO THE GUNDY?!!
David Ubben (3:35 PM)
Only on days that end in Y.
You have a quote in one of your posts yesterday from Tubbs talking about how TAMU leaving Texas is going to open up Houston for TTU. And just in general I've seen a lot of coaches talking about TAMU leaving Texas. Last I checked TAMU is staying right where it is in College Station, which is also where we'll be playing our home games. Really, what is the strategy behind coaches continuing to spew this nonsense?
David Ubben (3:36 PM)
Meh, I don't know. I could see some teams coming in and getting more guys from Houston that want to play against Texas kids, but I don't think it's going to be in the kind of volume Tuberville thought it would be. Granted, Tuberville also thought Mizzou would do very well in the SEC long-term, so believe what you want to believe.
Mike Leach recently had praise for Garrett Gilbert -- something to the effect of he'll really succeed at SMU. Agree?
David Ubben (3:37 PM)
It's definitely possible. I don't know why it didn't work for Gilbert at UT. He's got all the physical tools. Something just didn't click. SMU will be a good restart. I expect him to succeed there.
How open do you believe the QB competition is at OSU? Is Chelf our man or do Lunt and Walsh have a good shot?
David Ubben (3:39 PM)
No, I think it's 100 percent open. I'm not a huge believer in Walsh necessarily. Mostly his release. I like Lunt's size. We'll see if he can grasp the offense and the speed of the college game. I think Chelf is the least physically gifted of the three, but his accuracy and knowledge give him a nice edge.
Once Doege is gone Michael Brewer will take the reigns and from what i've seen in practice last year might be one of the best QB's Tech ever has had. I know that saying a lot but there is a reason *two* backup qb's have left
David Ubben (3:41 PM)
That could be possible. Spent some time with Neal Brown last week and he was fired up about Brewer. Hopes are obviously high for Doege this year, though. The staff felt he played well last year, but just had to shoulder too much of the responsibility for trying to win games after Eric Stephens' injury and the defense's struggles.
Will you so graciously allow me to continue posting on you're Big 12 blog?
David Ubben (3:41 PM)
Only if you learn the difference between your and you're.
Bold Prediction: WVU, TCU, and Tech will all beat OU and again leaving the Sooners disappointed. (I've already mentally prepared for this happening)
David Ubben (3:43 PM)
I wouldn't be so sure. OU is kind of fascinating this year. There was so much hype in 2011. There's no doubt it was a distraction. But this year? OU's probably talented enough to win the whole shebangabang, but they don't have the pressure of a preseason No. 1 or crazy "National Title or Bust!" expectations. Could that pay off? Remember, the Sooners came from nowhere to win the national title in 2000, too.
David Ubben (3:43 PM)
A couple more questions before we wrap up.
John (Galveston )
I saw where u said if Tech had 8 wins they'd be a darkhorse, well take away those injuries and u have an 8 win team, so if they stay healthy this year, its no question there a darkhorse in my opinion
David Ubben (3:44 PM)
Yes, but that's my point. They had the injuries. Guys missed valuable game time and practice reps. They have 15 guys out for spring. Those losses stunted the expected growth that would have made a Big 12 contender.
Rich (JAX, FL)
Ubbs, I've been reading your board now for the past few weeks and I have to say, I like your style. That being said, do you think a one loss WVU team is a legit NC contender, provided that, with one loss, they are the best in the B12 and win the conference? Or do you still see their status as former BE conference member hindering them in anyway?
David Ubben (3:45 PM)
Nah, I don't think anyone cares about them coming from the Big East. The Big 12 will be a solid league. A one-loss team, barring two undefeateds or a terrible loss and circumstances like this year, should be in the title game.
It seems some of my fellow K-Staters have gotten, dare I say, a bit uppity. For them I apologize. As for you though Ubben, oh you Mr. Ubben I'd love to know your thoughts on perhaps the positive effect the loss of the border war will have for the Sunflower Showdown rivalry?
David Ubben (3:46 PM)
I think it'll be the obvious one: KU fans will take K-State a lot more seriously.
David Ubben (3:46 PM)
OK, that's it for today. Thanks, folks. See you again soon.