Now we're getting somewhere. The scouting tonight is top notch. Dozens of prospects, plenty of day one candidates, top programs and (what should be) a good game on the menu.
It sets up well right now, so I'm trying to temper my expectations ahead of time as not to be disappointed by a sloppily played 14-10 game. Damn you, Washington and Baylor for setting the bar way too high.
Your open thread for a highly entertaining (unless it's not) 2011 Insight Bowl after the jump.
Insight Bowl (Iowa v. Oklahoma), 10:00pm - ESPN
- the EDSBS 35 for 35 show for MULTIBOWL (with Holly Anderson)
- Black Heart Gold Pants, the SBN community for fans of Iowa
- Crimson and Cream Machine, the SBN community for Oklahoma fans
So much good, so little time. Let's start with the Sooners.
Oklahoma came into the season with huge expectations (as many pro-OU TSTers will attest), but tight losses to Texas Tech and Baylor as well as the Bedlam blowout derailed any national aspirations. Still, this is a team loaded with talent. On offense, QB Landry Jones will get plenty of attention tonight and into the draft season. And yes, it's horrible that a prospect as classy as Ryan Broyles incurred such a horrible injury. Such is football. And it's worth making sure that Rams fans know ahead of time that Kenny Stills is a true sophomore, so don't go hoping to hear his name called in April next year. On defense, it's the Lewis pair (Travis and Ronnell), ILB Tom Wort and FS Tony Jefferson who will have the scouts' attention tonight. But this is an offensive team that relies on Jones and a running game (including diminutive sophomore Roy Finch) to rack up points.
Iowa, on the other hand, is so Iowa. They'll never recruit a top class. They'll never attract top athletes. But year after year, the guys that make it through their pipeline end up looking like NFL-caliber guys. Guys like Riley Reiff, who was recruited as a defensive end and is now one of the top offensive tackle prospects in the country. Guys like Shaun Prater who came in ridiculously undersized and leaves looking like a solid secondary depth option for most teams. Guys like Marvin McNutt, a high school quarterback who transitioned to WR and did so by getting better every year and honing the craft. There's a reason why you hear Iowa Head Coach Kirk Ferentz's name being brought every year as NFL coaching vacancies open up - he's arguably the best in the country at developing talent and managing programs cohesively and coherently.
Rams player of interest: Mike Daniels, Iowa DT (RS Sr.)
Final score: Oklahoma 42, Iowa 27