DALLAS (AP) — West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen is no stranger to the Big 12.
While the Mountaineers are league newcomers, Holgorsen was a Big 12 assistant for nine of 11 seasons before becoming a head coach. He was at Texas Tech for eight seasons and spent a year as Oklahoma State's offensive coordinator.
So he has a pretty good idea what West Virginia faces going so far away to a new league after winning or sharing the Big East title six times the last nine years, including the last two.
"What we're getting into is the same thing we got at home. And that didn't necessarily exist in the conference that we were in last year," Holgorsen said Tuesday. "The culture is there. The support's there. The fan base is there. We're going to fill up our stadium. Our team is used to winning, and that exists at the other nine universities in the Big 12 as well."
What does he feel is the best way to explain it to West Virginia fans and people in the Big 12?
"What exists in the Big 12 exists in Morgantown, West Virginia, as well," he said.
In the preseason media poll, the Mountaineers are picked to finish second behind Oklahoma, which won seven Big 12 titles over 11 seasons before Oklahoma State claimed its first crown last season.
There are not the same kinds of expectations for Charlie Weis' first season at Kansas. The Jayhawks are coming off a 2-10 season in which they lost six games by at least 30 points and didn't win a Big 12 game.
"One issue, the one that everyone sees, is the fact that we're 2-10 and 3-9 over the last two years," Weis said. "The other one, which I think is maybe even more important, were not the losses last year but how badly they lost so often. ... The first thing you better do is get your team to be more competitive on a weekly basis."
Weis said that's the No. 1 job of his staff that includes former NFL coach and defensive coordinator Dave Campo. The Jayhawks also have a one-year quarterback in Dayne Crist, a team captain who transferred following his graduation from Notre Dame — where he was originally recruited by Weis.
The Big 12 wrapped up its two-day media session Tuesday with the two new coaches, along with Baylor, Texas and Oklahoma State.
Baylor no longer has Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III, the second overall pick by the Washington Redskins after bypassing his senior season. Oklahoma State is depending on a true freshman to replace Brandon Weeden and Texas goes into the season with sophomore David Ash and junior Case McCoy still competing to be the starting quarterback. Continued...