It is that time of the year again when everyone puts out their preseason picks to win their respected conference championships, and there always seems to be a trendy pick by all the so-called experts.
For the Big 12 in 2010, those trendy picks overwhelmingly favor Texas A&M and Nebraska.
Let's break this down.
We all saw what Texas A&M quarterback Jerrod Johnson is capable of, and he will have a slew of good receivers to dish the ball to. Christine Michael will be entering his sophomore year after earning the Big 12’s Freshman Offensive Player of the Year, and looks every part of a dominating running back for the Aggies. Von Miller is good on the defensive side of the ball, but that is about it for them.
Making it to the title game would include beating Texas, which is possible, and Oklahoma, which has won its last seven against the Aggies by a combined 345-133 score.
A&M should finish anywhere from second to fourth place in the Big 12 South this season.
Nebraska, who is tucking tail and fleeing to the Big Ten next season, should be a shoe-in to win the Big 12 North and play for the conference title unless Missouri can find a hint of a defense that can actually compliment a decent offense. With a dominating defense returning, the Cornhuskers will have to improve drastically on the offensive side, ranking 99th in total offense last season.
That was fun, but now let's take a look at history and why making these trendy picks is just a complete waste of time.
Of the 14 Big 12 Conference Championship games, the Big 12 North has won only four, Nebraska being the only team to win multiple times (twice). The other 10 have gone the way of the mighty Big 12 South with Texas A&M winning one, Texas with three, and six belonging to the Oklahoma Sooners.
For the upcoming season the Big 12 Championship should end up back in the South division with its final resting place in Norman, Oklahoma.
The Sooners are returning a bevy of talent from last year on offense including Landry Jones, Demarco Murray, and Ryan Broyles, who should have what it takes to light up the scoreboard. The defense led by linebacker Travis Lewis should be just as loaded with some old faces and some extremely talented youngsters getting their first taste of football.
Not too mention a freshman class that head coach Bob Stoops has called his “best recruiting class by far.”
Why not pick OU to win it? Since 2000, the Sooners have gone 6-1 in their seven Big 12 Championship game appearances, making the title game 70 percent of the time in the last decade.
If the Sooners can escape the Longhorns, who lost Colt McCoy and a number of starters, they should coast through the rest of their schedule on their way to another Big 12 crown.
Although it may be fun and the risk is worth the reward when you make a trendy pick, stick with the tradition and history, because you can never go wrong.