KSO Running Diary: Big 12 Media Days
7:11 a.m.: We're safely in Arlington for Big 12 Media Days! Getting ready to head down to the lobby for some shuttle action (whenever Flando finishes getting pretty) and will be excited to bring you a full day of info - and hopefully some fun - on the site.
The five schools today are Kansas, TCU, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and Oklahoma, in that order. It will be fascinating, of course, to hear Les Miles lead this thing off.
Refresh the diary regularly for more details on today's events, plus keep an eye out for other items through the day from Flando and DY.
7:25 a.m.: You don't think Big 12 Media Days is a tough ticket?!? Check out the standing room only on the shuttle bus:
8:00 a.m.: Just a tremendous comment on Twitter from @oldmanrogersksu on this Derek Young pic: "Perfect #FirstDayOfSchool pic"
8:26 a.m.: They're out of coffee, already.
8:36 a.m.: So, we've got Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby coming up here at 9:05 a.m. In a funny quirk, it will be the second time in three days I've been in the same building as Mr. Bowlsby, as he was in Bramlage Coliseum Saturday night for Bill Snyder's ceremony.
Now, let's be real, he's not going to be extremely exciting here this morning. But, those fireworks are gonna start with Miles at 10:05 a.m. I cannot wait to hear him speak in this setting.
8:55 a.m.: Check out the following photos from Flando, which will also be updated throughout the day.
9:08 a.m.: "This is the time when all hell breaks loose," said Bob Bowlsby. I shall intentionally provide no context to this.
9:17 a.m.: "The numbers of transfers from institutions is about the same," Bowlsby says he's been informed since the transfer portal came into existence.
Bowlsby references this being the year the 150th season of college football is celebrated. You've likely seen that patch on some K-State jerseys, and here's a look at the patch on the Texas Tech and West Virginia jerseys on display today.
Bowlsby has also spent a good amount of time discussing the attendance issue across the nation, streaming/broadcast thoughts and the new "Big 12 Now" on ESPN Plus.
9:28 a.m.: "We're still the only one playing a full round robin... We've been 13-8 (in post-season play) and have a winning record over every other conference... Last year, of our seven bowl games, six of the seven opponents were held below their offensive averages by Big 12 defenses."
He's very proud of that (and probably should be). He told us to pick up our pencils and make some notes. I don't have a pencil. "Contrary to popular belief, there are kids in the Big 12 who know how to tackle."
"Les Miles and Chris Klieman have both won national championships," he just noted, talking about new coaches in the league.
9:32 a.m.: Bowlsby says "seven years in a row," conference realignment is the first question. And it was, oddly referenced as being a "hot topic last year," which it wasn't. Either way, he immediately answered there are no plans or discussions to add teams and he doesn't expect that to be a topic of discussion any time soon.
It was a hard no, and he feels good about the Big 12 Conference as constructed.
9:48 a.m.: Bowlsby says he would prefer if all major conferences played the same number of Power Five opponents throughout the season, if it were up to him, but that he wouldn't try and force a specific conference schedule on anybody else. He would like to see end-of-season resumes have more similarity, however, in how many P5 games each team had to play.
9:54 a.m.: Bowlsby is done, Miles is up at 10:05 a.m. I am putting him bringing up his acting career at even odds at the moment.
10:11 a.m.: Miles has notes prepared to read off of. I'm not sure I've ever seen that. This already feels uncomfortable.
10:15 a.m.: I'm not going to be rude and just attack the guy, but he's still reading all of his thoughts off a notebook and doesn't know his players names or roster details without it. It's kind of amazing. He also says they are going to a 3-4 this year.
10:20 a.m.: Miles was just asked how long it would take to have Kansas' competitive again for a New Year's Day bowl game. He never addressed that or gave an answer to that question, but he did say he watched the KU Orange Bowl team back when he was at LSU and was very impressed with them.
10:31 a.m.: Miles has finished up and did not have the typical media sidebar after his podium session. I imagine he really, really wanted to be done with this.
Gary Patterson of TCU is up next.
10:45 a.m.: Gary Patterson loves the location, as he said it took him 17 minutes to get here from his home. He even got to have a staff meeting this morning, that lucky duck.
Patterson references dealing with a ton of injuries last year and moves into the quarterback battle, saying there are six players battling at that position.
When asked to talk about the QB race, he mentions Alex Delton second and references him being a team captain at K-State. He did end up mentioning all six individuals names and thinks there great competition at the position. He says, "All of them have a chip on their shoulder."
He wants to narrow that group down to three relatively soon and then work from there.
10:49 a.m.: Patterson on Delton, "We didn't really seek out Alex. He sought us out. Coach (Bill) Snyder did not call me. Alex looked around at places and thought TCU would be a place since the programs were similar... I knew about him coming out of high school. I was very impressed with him when he came on campus... He went home, and he saved us... We really didn't have any quarterbacks at the time. To have a guy like that, an older guy, made a difference in the spring for us... He's really woven himself into the team chemistry... He can help us prepare for a Big 12 game, and we don't have a lot of guys at the position who can do that... To have a guy who knows how to handle himself, how to do things like that, has already made that position a lot better."
11:19 a.m.: Man, I think Mike Gundy just looks fantastic. The mullet is flowing better than ever, I see some fun grey stubble, he's super tan. I'm absolutely jealous.
In some more serious football news, he's not ready to name a starting quarterback. He did that, surprisingly, in this setting last year. He's splitting reps among his two options, and they'll name a starter whenever they feel good about the decision. They don't have a plan/date they have decided on for making a decision. They'll play both if neither separates himself.
11:23 a.m.: John Kurtz asks about offensive line coach Charlie Dickey, and Gundy says he's been wanting to hire Dickey for years but he was loyal to Bill Snyder. Says it took him about five minutes to pick up the phone and call Dickey to offer him the job when it came open.
Also, Gundy steals line of the day from Patterson. He was asked about Oklahoma's success, and in his answer he quipped, "They've had to overcome average quarterback play the last couple of years."
Very well done.
11:52 a.m.: Let's get to know some Matt Wells, right? The new Texas Tech coach... wait, I'm not going to see Kliff Kingsbury here. Whoa, that was heavy.
Okay, back to Wells.
11:56 a.m.: Wells is sharp, references the success the basketball program had last year as proof you can win big in Lubbock. I don't think Wells is going to wow people with overwhelming charisma, but I do believe he's impressive. I like him.
Great name, too.
He also says quarterback Alan Bowman is fully healthy and ready to go.
12:09 p.m.: Look at these two KMAN guys thinking alike. It's adorable.
12:32 p.m.: It's Lincoln Riley time, last coach to speak at the podium today. Says he's "very eager to play great defense like they should play at Oklahoma." That remains the question, of course. If OU's defense does show improvement, it will be hard to picture the Sooners not at least challenging for a College Football Playoff spot.
Running back Kennedy Brooks was re-instated last week, and Riley didn't shed a ton of light on the situation other than referencing the release Oklahoma sent out about the situation about a week ago.
From the Fort-Worth Star Telegram on the Brooks situation:
Brooks found himself in the center of a Title IX complaint when a female student at OU alleged that Brooks was physically violent toward her. The alleged victim did not file a complaint with police, according to The Athletic, and OU’s Title IX investigation cleared him.
Brooks is coming off a solid season in which he rushed for 1,056 yards and 12 touchdowns. OU also boasts Trey Sermon in the backfield.
12:37 p.m.: Good question about Jalen Hurts not having as much time in the system as Baker Mayfield or Kyler Murray did before they became starters for the Sooners. Riley acknowledges and agrees that's true, but he also notes how much game experience Hurts has in comparison to what Mayfield and Murray had prior to arriving at Oklahoma. He's very excited about Hurts, clearly.
Asked if the defense can improve more than the offense slips, Riley paused before finally saying, "We don't expect the offense to slip." He then spoke, at length, about the improvement he expects on defense. Staff changes on that side of the ball should have an impact, in Riley's opinion.
This is going to wrap up today's Running Diary, but keep checking back in for more coverage of today's event and especially tomorrow, when Kansas State will have its time at Big 12 Football Media Days.