The Big Twelve Conference had a solid showing in the first round of the 2009 NFL draft, with seven players taken in the initial thirty-two picks.
The St. Louis Rams took Baylor offensive tackle Jason Smith with the second pick. A 6′ 5″, 309 pound converted tight end, Smith was the first non-special teams All American for Baylor since 1995.
Texas Tech’s Michael Crabtree was picked tenth by the San Francisco 49ers. Crabtree is easily the most talented receiver in this years draft, but dropped quite a few spots due to concerns over his attitude and resilience.
Brian Orakpo of Texas went thirteenth to the Washington Redskins. GM Vinny Cerrato said they spoke with five teams trying to move up to make sure they were able to select Orakpo.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers took quarterback Josh Freeman of Kansas State as the seventeenth pick. While Freeman has all the measurables you want in an NFL quarterback, I’ve always thought he was missing something. Perhaps that something he was missing was having a real team behind him.
Wide receiver for the Missouri Tigers Jeremy Maclin went nineteenth to the Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles essentially use the short pass as a substitute for the run, and Maclin may be able to contribute greatly in such a scheme.
The Detroit Lions picked Oklahoma State tight end Brandon Pettigrew with the twentieth overall pick, and their second of the first round. Pettigrew is certainly a gamer and can contribute greatly in Detroit, but at some point the Lions need to try and build a defense.
To close out the first round, the Super Bowl Champion Pittsburgh Steelers picked Missouri’s defensive tackle Evander Hood as the thirty-second pick. The All-Big-Twelve first team selection had 62 tackles (31 solo) and will improve an already scary Steeler defense.
So, Missouri placed two players in the first round, and Texas, Texas Tech, Baylor, Kansas State, and Oklahoma State each placed one player. The Oklahoma Sooners didn’t have anyone in the first round of the 2009 NFL draft.
That’s a shame.