Big 12's Top Five Returning OLs

The top four returning offensive linemen were clear-cut choices as the Big 12 publishers ranked the best returning road graders in the conference.

The Big 12 publishers and reporters weighed in with their opinions on the top five offensive line returnees in the league, and the results were something of a landslide for the top four votegetters. That group was named on nearly every ballot, and held a sizeable margin over all other candidates.

Each of the Big 12 publishers on the network were asked to rank the top five with five points going to the No. 1 spot, four to No. 2, three to No. 3, and so on.

1. Spencer Drango, Jr., Baylor, 46 points (6 first place votes)
Baylor's offense sputtered, per Baylor standards, when it lost its starting left tackle to injury the final four games of 2013. With 22 starts under his belt, Drango enters his senior season as a cornerstone of Art Briles' offense and the clear selection as the league's number one lineman. In addition to his six first place votes, he was second on three other ballots.

2. Le'Raven Clark, Jr., Texas Tech, 34 points (2 first place votes)
You tune in to Red Raiders' games to watch Davis Webb sling the ball around, but you can't help but notice the big and nimble Clark, an NFL talent. He has the ability to protect the edge in pass protection and get downfield for second level blocks in the run game. He was also listed on all ten ballots.

3. B.J. Finney, Sr., Kansas State, 26 points (1 first place vote)
Finney is a two-time first team All-Big 12 honoree who gets it done with hard work. A former walk-on who has started all 39 games of his career after redshirting during his initial season, Finney outworks and overpowers most of his opponents, and gets his work done without fanfare. That perhaps accounts for his absence from two ballots in our poll.

4. Daryl Williams, Sr., Oklahoma, 21 points
A massive physical specimen who can play both tackle positions, Williams is likely headed for a long NFL career -- once he is finished working over Big 12 foes. A knee injury set back his progress a bit during his sophomore season, but he's primed for a big year in his final go-round in Norman.

5. Cody Whitehair, Jr., Kansas State 9 points
Whitehair is a second team all league selection who has started all but one game of his career. His versatility is a key, as he has played both guard and tackle for the Wildcats. He earned several freshman honors as well as preseason All-Big 12 mention this year.

Other OLs receiving votes: Tom Farniok, Iowa State (5 points); Dom Espinosa, Texas (3 points); Quinton Spain, West Virginia (3 points); Daniel Koenig Oklahoma State (2 points); Joey Hunt, TCU (2 points)

Recruiting Angle: "Kansas State gets a high honor by placing two players on the list. Also while the other three listed (Drango, Clark, Williams) were Scout four-stars, the Wildcats have developed their talent up front from less highly rated in-state finds. Finney walked on and Whitehair was a two-star." - Greg Powers

The voter panel: Jeremy Clark - HornedFrog, Jarret Johnson -, Kevin Kinder -, Greg Powers -, Bob Przybylo -, Trey Scott -, Terry Tush -, Tim Watkins -, William Wilkerson -, Derek Young -

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