So we talked about Columbia Tribune writer Dave Matter last week during the Evan Boehm/Durron Neal recruitment and not Matter has put out another discussion provoking blog entry. This time he put together his top ten list of the offensive position coaches currently in the Big 12. There are a couple interesting rankings and probably an omission or two that might surprise. So I thought I'd bring you all the list and see what you thought. So here is the list and after the jump, we'll get into the conversation about where you think he got it right or wrong.
1. Joe Wickline - Okie State - Offensive Line
2. Andy Hill - Missouri - Wide Receivers
3. Josh Heupel - OU - Quarterbacks
4. Dave Yost - Missouri - Quarterbacks
5. Cale Gundy - OU - Running Backs
6. Randy Clements - Baylor - Offensive Line
7. Jay Norvell - Wide Receivers
8. Bryan Harsin - Texas - Quarterbacks
9. Charlie Dickey - Kansas St. - Offensive Line
10. David Beaty - Kansas St. - Wide Receivers
So let's just start with #1 shall we. Now I know we have a couple (ok, maybe just one) OSU guys who happen to casually stop by from time to time, so maybe they can help me out on this one. Is this ranking justified? I'd probably have Wickline in the top three, as Matter discusses in his blog the results are hard to argue with,
From 2006-09, the Cowboys led the Big 12 in rushing behind Wickline’s lines, and last year, with a pass-heavy approach, OSU surrendered only 10 sacks in 13 games.
but I'd be hard pressed to put him above the guy whose picture you saw at the top of this story.
Now I'll readily admit my bias, but in my mind there is simply no way Josh Heupel isn't at the top of this list. He has mentored on stellar QB after another and the simple fact that Paul Thompson led his squad to a Big 12 championship is reason enough alone to give Heupel the benefit of the doubt if you had him even (or even close to) with another candidate for the top spot. So saying that, I guess since he covers Mizzou I shouldn't be surprised but by a show of hands who of you out there would have known who Andy Hill was before reading this? If I had told you he owned a small used car dealership outside of Boonville, MO or was the WR coach for Mizzou and the #2 best offensive coach in the Big 12 according to Mr. Matter, which one would you have believed? Like I said last week, I really like Matter's writing but I'm calling homer on this one. I believe Heupel to be one of, if not the best, position coaches in the entire country so being #1 in the Big 12 would be a no-brainer for me and there is no doubt in my mind he'd be ahead of Andy Hill.
I know they love Dave Yost in Columbia, but I'm not sure I could put him ahead of Cale Gundy on my list. If for no other reason than the collective amount of talent that Gundy has brought to Norman. Yost is no slouch either, working with Brad Smith,
Booger EaterChase Daniel, and Blaine Gabbert but even as good as they were for Mizzou it pales in comparison to what Gundy has done at RB for the Sooners. Though now, having read what I just wrote, maybe it's not an entirely fair comparison since Yost can really only play one guy (ideally anyway) while Gundy can play multiple. So having said that, maybe Yost slightly above Gundy is fair after all.
I really like seeing Jay Norvell on here and I think if he continues on the track that he's on, he'll easily be pushing for top five status in the near future. Having just stolen Durron Neal from Mizzou's backyard and if he were able to also snag Dorial Green-Beckham (of please lord!) he'd have to be considered the best recruiting WR coach. You couple that with what he has helped Ryan Broyles become, what Kenny Stills did last year as a freshman, and the overall development of the WR position as a whole compared to when he first arrived and there is no argument to be made against the guy. Some OU fans may forget, but when he first arrived in Norman the wide receiver position was nowhere the shape it's in now. Many fans were asking "Who the heck is going to play WR this year?" while now the question is "How the heck are we gonna get all these WRs on the field?"
Now to the the guy I've been waiting to comment on, Bryan Harsin. Talk about undeserving, I mean the guy hasn't even coached a game in the Big 12 yet. How do we know what kind of a coach he's going to be? To me, this is Matter giving him too much credit for Kellen Moore putting up video game numbers against a one game schedule every year. Chris Petersen was the man behind that offense and while it would be incredibly naive to think Harsin didn't learn anything during his time there, you can't just simply assume that Harsin continues that same success against Big 12 competition. Then Matter gives him WAY, WAY, too much benefit of the doubt that he can do anything with that crap pile they have at QB down in Austin. The latest rumor is now the QB battle is a three way, including Gilly, McCoy Jr. and true frosh David Ash (can you say Connor Wood transfer?). With those in the know down there stating that they will develop a special package of plays (John Chiles what?) just for Ash to get him involved in the offense no matter what. I can't wait to see how well that works out because unless Ash is St. Tebow the Second, and we all know we were only blessed with one of him, that kind of gimmick works, oh about 10% of the time at best. So if he can accomplish anything with Gilly & Friends, then he'll easily earn a spot in the top ten, but as of now it's a little premature in my opinion.
So what do you all think? Am I a total homer with my Heupel pick? Am I not giving Hill & Yost enough credit? What would your Top 10 list look like? Those questions and so many others can be all yours for the low, low price of a CCM comment below. So what are you waiting for!