RP Rapid Fire: Most Improved Position Group

The RaiderPower.com staff discusses which position group will be the most improved in 2015, the possibility of Big 12 expansion, is a Big 12 football title game a good idea, the top movie of 2015 and more.

What will be Texas Tech football's most improved position group from 2014 to 2015?

Alyssa: I think and hope that it will be the d-line.

Jarret: Cornerback. The group was not only thrown out there as freshmen and sophomores, but left in several 1-on-1 situations and at least competed hard. A year in the S&C and just getting situated with college life will pay huge dividends for this group and I expect it to be a team strength for years to come.

Joe: I'm going with the d-line here. The second-year JUCO transfers make a big jump, and Fehoko develops into a real presence. Then there's Pete at DE. 

Zach: Corner. I think it will be interesting to see how that group does when opposing offenses don't know what coverage the secondary is in, before every snap (allegedly).

The NBA draft is now behind us and free agency is set to begin. Which team "won" the draft, and which team will win the free agency period? Why?

Alyssa: I will just be honest, I have not been keeping up with the NBA draft. So, I can’t really answer this one.

Jarret: I thought Minnesota, who has really struggled with high picks in recent drafts, killed it with the No. 1 pick of Karl Anthony Towns, the best player in the draft. Then they followed it up by taking Duke point guard Tyus Jones, a savvy, skilled payer who is a proven winner. Jones has the hard to fully define clutch gene. As far as free agency, I think either the Spurs or Mavs will "win" free agency this year because of all the top players eligible it looks like LaMarkus Aldridge to the Spurs and DeAndre Jordan to the Mavs are the most likely moves. Most of the other free agents such as LeBron, Love, Leonard, Gasol, etc. aren't likely to leave.

Joe: Honestly, I haven't followed the NBA closely since the heyday of the Pistons with Laimbeer, Mahorn, Thomas, V. Johnson and Dumars, so I cannot give an educated answer to this one.

Zach: The Lakers won the draft, imo, for not drafting Okafor. Many scouts have questioned Okafor's love of the game, and I think you need dynamic guards to win in the West. The Spurs will win FA after landing Lamarcus Aldridge, trading the overrated and injury prone Splitter, and bringing back Duncan in a "wink-wink" deal.

With Big 12 Media Days less than a month away, a proposal is before the NCAA which would deregulate conference championship games and therefore allow the Big 12 to host a conference championship game as early as 2016. Are you in favor of this? Why or why not?

Alyssa: Yes! For me, you can’t go wrong with more football.

Jarret: I'm conflicted on this one because on one hand I definitely believe the perception around the country is the Big 12 is inferior because it doesn't have a championship game. On the other hand, an extra game to determine the conference champ after a round robin schedule would likely make the Big 12's path to a playoff berth more difficult. The fact the Big 12 doesn't have 12 teams, two divisions and a title game is holding it back in my opinion.

Joe: I didn't realize NCAA regulation was inhibiting the Big 12 holding a championship game, but to the extent that it has, I favor this development. Than too, I'm almost always in favor of deregulation.

Zach: I'm not in favor of it at all unless it serves as a tiebreaker between  two teams that went 11-1. If a team goes undefeated in this conference, they have done enough to win the conference championship.

Greg Boren made conference realignment a hot topic yet again with his recent comments about the ten-member Big 12 being "psychologically inferior" to other conferences due to its size. Do you think Big 12 expansion is on the horizon, and who would it make the most sense to add?

Alyssa:  I think they will expand. I could see Boise State and I think it would be awesome if Houston was added. 

Jarret: I agree on the notion of the 10-team league is inferior simply based on not being split into divisions and having a title game. That being said, Boren's comments left me more confused about how adding two teams would effect Tech's piece of the Big 12 money pie than I was before. Adding BYU and UCF makes sense to me from a football fan's perspective. I think each team would be competitive. Put Tech, UT, Baylor, TCU, OU, OKST in the Big 12 South, and KU, K-State, WVU, ISU, BYU and UCF in the Big 12 "North".

Joe: It seems like Big 12 expansion has been a hot topic, off and on, almost since the conference has existed, so who knows? I believe the conference is likely to expand if it can add significantly to its television "footprint." Cincinnati could be the best plausible candidate in that regard. New Mexico might be a possibility on the other side.

Zach: I don't think Big 12 expansion is on the horizon, but instability is. BYU puts a surprisingly large number of butts in seats and has a nationwide following, while Cincinnati could provide a local rival for West Virginia. Neither is likely, though.

What has been the best movie in theaters of 2015, and which upcoming movie are you most looking forward to this year?

Alyssa: Avengers was by far the best this year so far. I really can’t wait for Amy Schumer’s movie Trainwreck.

Jarret: The Kingsman was a wild ride I really enjoyed the most. I'm looking forward to taking my 3-year-old son to see the Minions movie.

Joe: I haven't seen a movie at the theater in 2015, but I will when SPECTRE hits the screens in November.

Zach: I was really pleasantly surprised with Mad Max: Fury Road and think it has been the movie of 2015 so far. I'm anxiously awaiting Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

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