Big 12 Coaches Corner 9-10-12
By KEVIN LONNQUIST
Big 12 Insider
Every week, the Big 12 coaches hold a conference call with the media. Rattle and Hum Sports points out some of the issues that made the most news:
- While it’s against two teams that Texas should have dominated, coach Mack Brown is pleased with where his offense is at third down conversions. The Longhorns are in the top 10 of the country at 61 percent (19-of-31)…unlike most road venues where a team will do a walk through in the opposing team’s stadium the day before, the Longhorns won’t do that this weekend when they play Ole Miss in Oxford Saturday night. The Longhorns are staying in Memphis.
- For any program, learning how to win is a process. That’s what Kansas coach Charlie Weis has to stress to his team following Saturday’s 25-24 loss to Rice. The Owls converted a 4th-and-4 and 3rd-and-7 on the final drive to set up the game winning field goal as time expired. “You can’t count on them to do it on their own,’’ Weis said. “We as coaches have to guide them through [learning to finish].’’
- Oklahoma defensive tackle Casey Walker returned to practice on Monday, coach Bob Stoops said. The senior has been on campus but not with the team to deal with personal issues. Stoops said he expects Walker to get into the defensive tackle rotation immediately and should be ready for the Sept. 22 game against Kansas State. Oklahoma is off this week.
- Part of the problem with Oklahoma State’s rough night in a 59-38 loss at Arizona was 15 penalties for 167 yards (don’t forget four turnovers). But a double personal foul against defensive tackle Calvin Barnett was critical. “I brought him into the office Sunday and told him he has to cool it,’’ coach Mike Gundy said. “If he keeps it up, we’re going to have to take him of the field…OSU defensive coordinator Bill Young, who hasn’t coached the first two games because of a medical procedure he had two weeks ago, is in the office but is not coaching yet, Gundy said.
- Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein was named the conference’s offensive player of the week, but that doesn’t surprise coach Bill Snyder. “He’s a wise young guy who will not take his preparation for granted’’…by scoring 52 points against Miami (Fla.), KSU became only the sixth team ever to surpass 50 points against the Hurricanes.
- All West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen had to do with his team was remind them of what happens when a team takes a FCS team lightly. James Madison, ranked No. 4 in that poll, has a history of knocking off big programs including a 21-16 upset at Virginia Tech in 2010. That game was in Blacksburg, VA.…as for sophomore running back Dustin Garrison’s return this year from a knee injury, Holgorsen said the staff hasn’t made any decision on whether to play him or redshirt him. Given the depth, the Mountaineers could live without him but may wait to see how the season is playing out later in the fall.
- Baylor coach Art Briles said he and his staff used last week’s off week so his team would be more diligent about learning and grasping assignments…the university will hold a ground breaking ceremony for the new Baylor Stadium at the half of Saturday’s game against Sam Houston State. Ground is already being moved for the stadium, which is scheduled to be ready for the 2014 season.
- The value of Iowa State’s linebacker Jake Knott was shown with his game-sealing interception last Saturday at Iowa to preserve the 9-6 win. “It was a very alert play,’’ coach Paul Rhoads said. “He and A.J. [Knott] communicated about the play [Iowa was running]. They just had the presence of mind to be settled mentally before the play was run.’’
- TCU offensive lineman Blaize Foltz, one of three Kansans on the TCU roster, makes a visit back to his home state Saturday when TCU plays its inaugural Big 12 game at Kansas. “He’d like to go out on a high note there. But anytime you get into Big 12 play, the stakes go up.’’
- Texas Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said wide receiver Eric Ward, who was held out of the game at Texas State because of a concussion, should play this Saturday against New Mexico.