Without even playing a single down in his new conference, West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith is already upsetting opposing head coaches, teams, and fan bases in the Big 12 conference.
Smith, not Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones, was awarded preseason All-Big 12 team honors as the conference’s most prolific quarterback. To add fuel to the fire, Smith was also named preseason Offensive Player of the Year, the Big 12 conference announced today.
There is no debate that Smith has had an incredible career as a college football quarterback, but it is intriguing to see his name as the top quarterback of a conference he has never played in before.
The defensive talent that Smith faced in the Big East is far from as good as the defenses of Texas and Oklahoma. The Big 12 has been known as a “pro factory” because of the amount of defensive talent the conference sends to the NFL each year.
Every snap is going to be a challenge for Smith and the Mountaineers because the team will have to adjust to playing against a new slate and caliber of teams. The Mountaineers will be traveling to new stadiums, different geographical locations, and into scorching weather conditions.
No longer will the Mountaineers match up against the cupcakes of the Big East, play numerous games in the cold and snow, or charter flights along the east coast. WVU will play teams in the states where football is considered the King, take flights to the southwest, and face fan bases that make the alumni in Cincinnati look like the crowd at your son’s tee ball game.
Will Geno Smith prove to be the conference’s best quarterback in 2012? The Big 12 thinks so.
Fortunately for Smith, he plays for a head coach, Dana Holgerson, who employs a system where quarterbacks can flourish and put up tremendous numbers.