In today's Big 12 Twitter mailbag, we discuss the best-case scenario for Texas Tech, K-State's late quarterback addition and the player flying under the radar who could be a star in the fall.
To the 'bag:
@Jake_Trotter who will be two new Baylor stars to emerge this year? I'll say Zamora and Blanchard.— Ryan Daugherty (@rynodaugherty) June 4, 2015
Trotter: Those are good ones. I would include slot receiver Chris Platt in that conversation, too. He can absolutely fly (what else is new among Baylor receivers?). Here's another name that we maybe haven't been discussing enough: Seth Russell. Art Briles' track record with quarterbacks has been stellar, and Russell has all the tools. He also has an incredible supporting cast offensively. There is nothing obvious keeping him from becoming one of the better quarterbacks in the country.
@Jake_Trotter what is your most optimistic prediction for the 2015 Red Raiders?— Hooks Waller (@HooksWaller) June 4, 2015
Trotter: 8-4 feels like the best possible outcome, Hooks. Tech has a brutal three-game stretch early in the season -- Arkansas on the road, TCU at home and Baylor in Arlington. To have any shot at 8-4, the Red Raiders would need to steal one of those games. If they did, they would have a good chance of getting to 5-2 before the schedule stiffened again, which would put them within striking distance of eight wins. Arkansas was the fork-in-the-road game on Tech's schedule last season. It feels like it will be the same this season.
@Jake_Trotter Cavs or warriors in how many? Who is finals mvp?— Travis Guidry (@TGuidry25) June 4, 2015
Trotter: Golden State in 6. The Cavs have made a valiant run, but they seem too beat up to come back and topple the Warriors. Stephen Curry will be MVP.
Trotter: When Bill Snyder is your coach, anything is possible. But I don't see it this season. The Wildcats just have too much to replace in Tyler Lockett, Curry Sexton, Jake Waters, BJ Finney, Jonathan Truman and Ryan Mueller. Something pretty unexpected would have to happen for K-State to finish in the top three of the league again -- like Alex Delton becoming the second coming of Ell Roberson.
@Jake_Trotter How big of a factor will Banks be in the KSU QB battle?— Aaron Wilson (@AJ97Wildcat) June 4, 2015
Trotter: I actually spoke to Johnathan Banks on the phone for a little while this week (my Q&A with him will be up next Wednesday). There is no doubt he has some ability, and seems to fit the mold of the quarterbacks Snyder likes to play. But he basically is starting from scratch with regards to the playbook. I just don't know if he can overcome such a drastic learning curve in only a couple of months to win the job.
@Jake_Trotter which Big 12 team will improve the most from 2014?— David (@IronGunslinger2) June 5, 2015
Trotter: Oklahoma State seems like a good bet. Because of offensive line problems and inexperience at quarterback, the Cowboys were a below average team for much of last season and lost five in row. But they seem to have ironed out their offensive line issues, and Mason Rudolph has the look of a budding star. If you're looking for a team that could challenge Baylor and TCU, Oklahoma State might be it. The Cowboys get the Bears and Horned Frogs in Stillwater, too.
@Jake_Trotter does Oklahoma have a chance at the Big 12 title this year ?— steven wayne jenning (@StJennings) June 4, 2015
Trotter: Sure, they could win it. Few have been more down on Oklahoma after last season than I. But remember, the Sooners are just three years removed from sharing the Big 12; they are two years removed from beating Alabama. For all its issues, this is still a very talented team. Samaje Perine, Sterling Shepard and Eric Striker are All-American-caliber players. With better quarterback play, a viable offensive identity and more consistent pass defense, the Sooners could be formidable again. Bob Stoops is a dangerous man when he's the underdog. The Sooners should not be written off.
@Jake_Trotter give me a player who is under the radar right now whose name we will know by the end of the season in the big 12.— Derek Duke (@DerekDuke25) June 4, 2015
Trotter: You might already know Kolby Listenbee's name, but the TCU senior is rarely mentioned in the conversation of best receivers in the Big 12. But he's one of the fastest players in the league. And coming off a breakout 2014 season, he tore it up in the spring, according to coach Gary Patterson. With Trevone Boykin throwing him passes, Listenbee could have a monster 2015 season.
@Jake_Trotter if Smu has a good year (bowl game, bowl win) would they enter the conversation of being added to big12 with a BYU type o'team?— Jamie Wilder (@JamieWilder05) June 4, 2015
Trotter: SMU could win the national championship, and it still wouldn't have an invite to the Big 12.
@Jake_Trotter how big of a mistake is the Big12 making by keeping baylor?— Jacob Sailors (@jdsailors16) June 4, 2015
Trotter: Over/under on how many #61-58 hashtag mentions Jacob will get after the mailbag posts?