Welcome to this weeks CRFF mailbag!
We are hoping to make this a weekly thing, so any questions you have can be tweeted to us directly and you might see them featured in the mailbag.
Let’s get to it:
@CowboysRFF Do you think rudolph and Washington will stay if so over under we win big 12 next year 40%— Evan McDaniel (@EvanEtm) December 21, 2016
Cade: There have been a few credible reports that James Washington and Mason Rudolph would be returning for their senior seasons, respectively. So, knowing that, I’ll go ahead and move to the second half of your question. I think I will take the over here, and while that might seem boisterous, allow me to explain ... Look at what Oklahoma State is returning on the offensive side of the ball. Rudolph, Washington, Hill, McCleskey, just to name a few. But when you look at their depth, they bring back key players like Marcell Ateman and Chris Lacy. Add in X-Factors like Tyron Johnson and Chuba Hubbard, and you could see one of the best offenses in the country. The defensive side of the ball worries me a bit, but valuable experience returns in the secondary, and I think that’s where it counts most in the Big 12.
@CowboysRFF Is Juwan Evans the most talented player osu hoops has ever rolled out?— Brett Moore (@Brett_Moore) December 20, 2016
Cade: Great question. I want to say no, just simply because of the history that comes with the program. You’ve got guys like Tony Allen, Bryant Reeves, Marcus Smart just to name a few that could all have a case. Being praised as the best of all time is quite lofty, but I certainly think you could make the case. Let me see how he does through the course of a full season, and if he keeps it up at this pace, I might have to change my answer.
Cade: An aggressive offensive playbook.
@CowboysRFF Why has Gundy received a pass for not knowing the intentional grounding rule? Refs get blame, CMU for accepting win. Know rules, we win.— Stan Bowman (@TallCooolOne) December 20, 2016
Cade: I’m not sure here. In my opinion, the people who should know the rules above anyone else are the referees. It’s literally their job to know the rules and enforce them. Yes, you are correct. There’s no excuse for Gundy not knowing the rule, but when the group of people who get paid to know the rule can’t figure it out, I can’t fault the coach. Still sucks, though.
@CowboysRFF How much will the defense be affected by losing Sterns, Burton, Lampkin and possibly Taylor?— Jonathan Chaves (@jonnychavez21) December 20, 2016
Cade: I’ll rank those players based on their “irreplaceability.”
4. Jordan Burton
3. Vincent Taylor
2. Ashton Lampkin
1. Jordan Sterns
OSU is fairly deep at linebacker and defensive tackle right now. I think they’ll be able to find players who can fill the role of Jordan Burton. They may (will) have a harder time replacing the production of Vincent Taylor, but the defensive tackle spot is the deepest its ever been at OSU.
Moving to the secondary, I think we might see a significant drop-off in quality of play from the cornerbacks next season. Ramon Richards will obviously start, but then it’s a crapshoot as to who will take over on the other side.
That said, I think the biggest loss for this defense comes at the safety spot with Jordan Sterns. He’s an All-Big 12 player for a reason. Wide receivers respect him, and running backs don’t like meeting him in the hole. Tre Flowers has stepped up nicely, and Kenneth Edison-McGruder got some valuable playing time this season, but they won’t be able to fill the void that Sterns will leave.
@CowboysRFF if you were a Christmas cookie, what kind of cookie would you be?— Sam Weyrens (@samweys96) December 20, 2016
Cade: Gotta go with an iced Lofthouse cookie here. One of my guilty pleasures.
Thanks for reading. Don’t forget to send in your mailbag questions for next weeks edition.