Five to watch in Big 12 spring practices

Spring is a pivotal time for all players across the Big 12.

But several have the opportunity to really make a push for playing time in the fall during spring practices.

Here's a look at five players who could be ready to challenge for playing time this spring.

Kansas quarterback Quinn Mecham: New Kansas offensive coordinator Chuck Long personally recruited him to the Kansas program, meaning he'll get a legitimate shot to win the starting job this spring in a battle with Kale Pick. Mecham threw for 3,091 yards and 40 touchdowns last season at Snow College. He had the kind of moxie that Long thinks will make him a productive player and an immediate contributor for the Jayhawks.

Oklahoma linebacker Tom Wort: A fast early start had him in contention for a starting job with the Sooners before he sustained a season-ending knee injury last August. His recovery has been complete and he should be in the mix for the vacant starting job at middle linebacker this spring for the Sooners.

Kansas State quarterback/running back Chris Harper: The Oregon transfer and Wichita native moved to be closer to home and for a shot at quarterback. The field is crowded with the Wildcats, but Harper's athleticism might give him the opportunity to play particularly with Bill Snyder's interest in Wildcat formations.

Nebraska offensive lineman Jermarcus Hardrick: The 6-foot-7, 315-pound former LSU commitment and transfer from Fort Scott Community College could contend for immediate playing time with a strong spring effort. Nebraska coaches love his size and his tenacity as he already shown well in early conditioning drills.

Baylor offensive lineman Robert Griffin: All eyes will be on the recovery of quarterback Robert Griffin, as he recovers from knee surgery. But Baylor coaches are also eager to have "Big" Robert Griffin playing for them as well. His experience at Navarro Junior College and his size (6-foot-6, 345-pounds) should enable him to immediately contend for the starting job at right tackle.