College football analysts Matt Millen and David Pollack were two panelists at last week’s Rudy’s Bar-B-Q Pigskin Preview. Before their discussion in front of over 820 guests, Millen and Pollack provided members of the media and the Valero Alamo Staff with personal insights on how today’s college football landscape is changing.
Matt Millen –
What are your thoughts on the Valero Alamo Bowl?
The Valero Alamo Bowl has gotten better and better every year. Playing at Penn State, I’m a Big Ten guy, and I know they have shifted from the Big Ten to the Pac-12. Regardless of conference affiliation, good teams are good teams and I’m going to watch the Valero Alamo Bowl because they’re matchups feature good teams.
What do you see in the Big 12 Conference this year?
I think there are a lot of good teams in the Big 12 this year. You have Oklahoma, who is the No. 1 team in the country right now. Then there is Oklahoma State who is going to score a ton of points and is a team you can’t sleep on. Don’t forget about Texas A&M, if you forget about them they will beat you. Texas A&M will beat some teams this year that they aren’t expected to. Baylor is always good, they will do big things. There is just a lot of talent in the Big 12 right now.
What do you think will happen with the Big 12?
I think the Big 12 is a work in progress. I think if you are in the Big 12 right now, that is your best bet to get into a BCS game. If you are a coach in the Big 12 and your goal is to get into a BCS game, you need to stay right here.
What makes high school football in Texas so different from other states?
A lot of other states produce great football players, but only in certain areas. Across the board, the best coaches and high school kids are from Texas.
David Pollack –
What do you know about the Valero Alamo Bowl?
I’m learning more about it as I’ve been educated this past week. I distinctly remember the Justin Blackmon celebration, if that counts.
How do you feel about the shifting in the Big 12?
Being an SEC guy, I don’t understand, geographically, why Texas A&M would want to move there. But, bottom line is “show me the money”. The SEC could broaden the TV market for Texas A&M and the SEC would become more prevalent in Texas.
What is your take on where college football is today and the student-athlete’s role in it?
This offseason has been really hard, the worst in history, and I don’t think it’s going to get any better any time soon. It is hard for players to stay out of trouble with camera phones, facebook and twitter - it isn’t like back in Millen’s day. The players know right from wrong, but that doesn’t make it easy. At one time or another, we were all struggling to make ends meet in college and looking for a way out. Some of these players took the shortcut, but they are paying for it now. I don’t think you can blame teams, schools, or administrators, it is all on the players. That rulebook is drilled into your head when you are a student-athlete. The education is there, the student-athletes just have to use it.