Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
In recent years, every one of the Heisman trophy winners has had one of two qualities (or both of them).
They have either been a standout, unrivaled athletic talent (Troy Smith, Tim Tebow, Cam Newton, Robert Griffin III), or they have been on a team headed to the national title game (Newton, Mark Ingram, Sam Bradford).
While Geno Smith is a great player, he doesn't exactly fit the Newton/RGII bill in terms of sheer athleticism and, specifically, running ability.
So, that leaves Smith and WVU one choice: earn a national title berth, which presumably, they will have to run the table to do so.
Could West Virginia run the table in 2012? Absolutely.
Whether or not they actually will is another story.
There are a couple of things that bother me about the Mountaineers' prospects of keeping a clean slate this season.
The first, and this is a big one for me: consistency.
WVU has blatantly lacked consistency in recent years.
Actually, I take that back.
In the past four years, West Virginia football has been consistently inconsistent—three 9-4 seasons and a 10-3 season.
Every year the Mountaineers are favored in nearly every single one of their games, but somehow give a couple of those games away.
In order for Smith to win the Heisman, that cannot happen.
The second thing bothering me is simply WVU's move to the Big 12.
Assuming that the Mountaineers will be able to waltz into the Big 12 and take the title year one is simply foolish.
Again, it absolutely could happen. But, let's not be so quick to jump to conclusions.
The arguments have often been made that the "Big 12 doesn't play defense" and the "Big East was a strong defensive conference."
How about Oklahoma who held Iowa to just 14 points in the Insight Bowl, or Texas who stymied Cal, holding them to just 10 points in the Holiday Bowl.
Then let's look at Louisville who gave up 31 points in a Belk Bowl loss to NC State—remembering that WVU put up just four more points than NC State against UL.
Or maybe the Big East offenses were just weak in 2011. After all, Pitt only mustered a lousy six points against C-USA foe SMU in the BBVA Compass Bowl.
Bowl games may not be the best litmus tests for teams' true performances, but the point is, I'm not sold on the fact that WVU will just be able to score at will in the Big 12.