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Mailbag: Klein, report cards, Tech, OT rules

Thanks for all your emails this week, everybody. Here's where you can reach me if you've got more to say.

Mark Rose in Manhattan, Kan. writes: David,I love reading your stuff, thank you. I am a big Colin Klien fan and I think he was a master at running the K-State offense. My question is where do you see him in the NFL? If he called you what advice would you give him, stay a QB, or become a tight end, or maybe switch to defense? Let me know your thoughts.Thanks,Mark

David Ubben: Love Klein, and I do think he'll be successful at something if he puts his mind to it. But in the NFL, he's going to face questions at every corner. It's up to him to prove them unfounded. He doesn't have enough velocity or accuracy to become an NFL starter. That's tough to change. If he wanted to become a receiver or a tight end or maybe an H-back, he'll have the raw skills, but can he prove himself as a blocker? That kind of stuff gets way overlooked, and it's the most difficult part of guys trying to move positions at a higher level.

I don't see him as a guy who could have a long career as an NFL QB, but I could see him working on his blocking and finding a place on an NFL roster for a long time. It won't be easy. He'll have to really want to do it, but he's a big body and a physical presence. Getting his technique down is something he can change.


Blake Kennis in Austin, Texas, writes: All right, last week I acknowledged that I believed you were correct in your power rankings by having the Horns 5th, but you took your criticism too far with these "season report cards." How is it you can give the Longhorns a C+ when they finish 9-4 and went 2-3 against top-25 teams, one of which was in a strong finish against a top-15 opponent. All the while giving Baylor a full letter grade higher with a B and Okie State an A-. This is an outrageous analysis that neglects the fact that you don't have to be smart to get a quality grade. You just need to get the right score on test day, and both Baylor and Okie State did not do that. The only teams that truly earned a higher grade than Texas are K-state, Oklahoma, and maybe TCU if you're generous. There is now arguing this Ubben, the proof is in the pudding.

DU: I wrote about this on the report cards, but preseason expectations and overall talent definitely plays into these grades. Texas returned a lot of talent from an eight-win team and won ... nine games. That's pretty average, especially for Texas. You can't belabor the point enough: Since 2009, Texas hasn't looked like the team on the field that has so, so many advantages off the field. This year was certainly included.

Meanwhile, Baylor and Oklahoma State lost some of the best players to ever play in this league or play for their respective schools and won eight games. Oklahoma State did so despite having two quarterbacks suffer significant injuries. If you don't think that's more impressive than what Texas did, well, we're just going to have to agree to disagree.

Brian in Raleigh, N.C., writes: Now that the NFL has improved their overtime rules, any chance college football adopts the new NFL scheme?

DU: I don't see it ever happening. It's all about where you're coming from. NFL overtime was terrible, and far too reliant on luck. The percentage of teams that won the coin toss, scored and won without the other team touching the ball wasn't super high, but it was ridiculous that it was a possibility. Fixing that is a step in the right direction, but college football overtime is amazing. Few want it changed. Public opinion is certainly not in favor of it. That's pretty powerful in stuff like this.

The new NFL format made NFL overtime better. If college went to it, it would make college overtime worse. I'd support teams getting the ball at the 35 or 40 instead of the 25, so you aren't gifted a field goal and defenses could make a bigger impact, but I'd never want to see a wholesale change away from college football's current overtime.

Chris in Stillwater, Okla., writes: Remember when you accused Iowa State of copying USC because of their very similar uniforms. Thats what I think of the Baylor helmet, only its a knock off of the Notre Dame helmet. I know Baylor usually has gold colored helmets, but solid gold is Notre Dames brand.

DU: I hear you on this, Chris, but it's not the same thing. For one, the gold facemask is amazing. Notre Dame doesn't do that. For two, Iowa State's entire uniform looks like USC. Baylor's obviously look nothing like Notre Dame's so adding the gold helmet would hardly cause folks to notice the similarities. Also, the gold helmets would be an alternate for special games, not the norm. Iowa State's jerseys are the norm. And look exactly like USC's.

Reagan F. in Texas writes: What are the chances Michael Brewer has similar stats to Johnny Manziel considering they have the same play style and Brewer now has Kingsbury? Could Tech get 10+ wins?

DU: That's asking a lot -- particularly with his legs. I could definitely see Brewer equaling Manziel's passing stats. Throwing for 3,700 yards or so, completing 68 percent of his passes with 26 scores and nine picks is a high bar, but certainly a realistic goal. But scrambling around and running for 1,200 yards? That's absurd. That's what set Manziel apart. Brewer will be good. I've got high hopes for him. I don't think it's too critical to suggest he's not going to equal the season of the first player to ever win a Heisman Trophy as a freshman.