A couple readers e-mailed me about a local Nebraska station that ran an April Fool's story about the Big 12 giving Nebraska the conference title after discovering a clock malfunction on the game's final play. For those of you that e-mailed about that, you all win e-mail of the week. Any other Big 12-related April Fool's pranks I should know about?
Here's a mailbag pretty heavy on Nebraska questions since, for the second week in awhile, it was stocked by Husker fans.
Ryan Conrad in Omaha, NE asks:
David, who is the team you most want to watch in person in this upcoming season?
David Ubben: Easy. It’s the teams who are changing the most. You never know how things will look, even through spring and fall and sometimes early on in the season. The big changers are obviously Kansas and Texas Tech, more so in Lawrence because of the player turnover. Oklahoma State is in that group, too. Those three teams are really big wild cards in the conference, and I don’t think we’ll have a great idea where they’ll finish for awhile.
David in Austin, Texas asks: Hey David,Student at UT, but huge Husker fan here. How good will Henery be this year for the Big Red? I know last year Bo made him an honorary blackshirt. Does he take another step forward? Can he? He already saved their season multiple times last year with his leg. Does he do it again? Does he get even better and catapult himself onto the national stage?
DU: He was pretty close to the national stage last year as a semi-finalist for the Groza Award. He’ll definitely be on the watch list and if he hits 24-of-28 again, he’ll have a great chance at being a finalist.
I’m sure Bo would rather him not have that many attempts, but he’s shown if he gets them, he’ll make them.
Hopefull Tiger from KCMO asks: Do you see the Big XII morphing into a running conference? Is the Spread dead?
DU: Really interesting question. Last year, you saw a big scoring drop in the Big 12. I think defenses are catching up to the spread, getting smarter and recruiting differently to have more speed on the depth chart to cover more space.
But, I don’t think it’s that simple, and there’s a ton of factors involved, but I think offenses across the conference are going to look a little different this year. Across the conference, there’s a ton of talent at running back. Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa State and Kansas State are all teams that will probably rely heavily on the running game in 2010. But just about every team in the conference has a solid set of proven running backs. Look at teams like Texas Tech, Texas A&M, Missouri, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Colorado and Texas. They’ve all got one or more proven backs. I don’t think we’ll see three yards and a cloud of dust again any time soon, but for the past few years, the strength of the conference has been at quarterback. There’s still talent there, but now, there might be more at running back.
Owner of St. Louis Rams in Lincoln asks: David, who should I take first in this years draft? Suh is probably the best DT in the last 20 years, but everybody seems to think Bradford is the "safer" choice despite his injury. What do I do!?
DU: Hang on a second. First off, I used my journalizing skills on The Googler and found out who you are. I’ll take the high road keep that just between us. Not everyone can access that information. But why are you in Lincoln? I don’t want to seem skeptical, but something’s not right. I guess I’ll answer your question anyway.
Bradford isn’t necessarily a safer option, but he’s the one with the bigger potential for impact. Albert Haynesworth is a great player. He’s not going to resurrect a franchise any time soon. Matt Ryan is well on his way to doing it.
That said, Suh’s going to be in for a great career, probably a much “safer” pick than any quarterback.
Mike Newman in Denver, CO asks: Okay, lets hear what you think of the upcoming seasons non confrence road games. What games do you see as good matchups, and what games do you just want to travel and take in the game day atmosphere?
DU: I’d probably go with the two big games looming next season, Nebraska at Washington and Oklahoma vs. Cincinnati at Paul Brown Stadium. We’ll know a lot more about those two teams after those games.
Brad in Valdosta/GA says:
I think Zac Lee, Jared Crick, Prince Amukamara, Niles Paul, and Rex Burkhead will be the only players in the nation invited to the 2011 Heisman. What do you think?
DU: I’m guessing you mean the 2010 Heisman, but I don’t see anyone else across the college football landscape who can contend with any of those guys in any way.