4 Unknown Big 12 Players That Can Become Superstars This Season

The Big 12 is home to some of the best and most accomplished football players in the country, but some new, unexpected superstars arise every year. Here are four guys that are likely to become household names in 2015:

4) LB Malik Jefferson, Texas Longhorns

One of the most celebrated and hyped recruits to hit Austin in the past decade or so, the former #1 player in the state of Texas will have a massive spotlight over him when he takes the field at fall camp. Jefferson has bulked up to 240 pounds and projects to be the type of impact true freshman that college football rarely sees in the era of redshirts. The Longhorns are counting on him to be their defensive anchor right away, meaning he doesn't have a lot of time to get up to speed with the college game.

3) QB Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma Sooners

Mayfield earned the starting quarterback job over incumbent Trevor Knight after transferring to Norman from Texas Tech, where he passed for 2,315 yards, 12 touchdowns, and nine interceptions in eight starts as a freshman. Now that Oklahoma is running an up-tempo system, he should flourish.

2) QB Mason Rudolph, Oklahoma State Cowboys

Rudolph filled in as a true freshman for the Cowboys last season, and his play is one of the biggest reasons why many are picking Oklahoma State to finish third, behind Baylor and TCU, in the conference next season. He threw for 853 yards and six touchdowns over the last three game, and has all of his top five receivers back. Now, it's on him to prove he can sustain those numbers for a whole season.

1) QB Seth Russell, Baylor Bears

Russell didn’t get much playing time in 2014, but he definitely made the most of it – he completed 48 of 85 passes for 804 yards, 8 TDs and 1 interception. It wasn’t against the kind of defenses he’ll face as a starter, but it definitely bodes well for the next man up in Baylor’s offense factory. Art Briles’ team isn’t losing very many impact players, and Russell is coming into what might be the most QB-friendly job in NCAA football. Baylor insiders have raved about Russell’s potential since he hit campus – and he needs to prove them right for Baylor to meet their expectations.

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