The SEC might be the best football conference, but the Big 12 is not too far off. The Big 12 has produced just as much talent in the NFL as any other college football conference in recent memory. The most notable names being Lions DT Ndamukong Suh Rams QB Sam Bradford, Packers TE Jermichael Finley, Redskins OLB Brian Orakpo, and last but certainly not least the best RB in the NFL in Vikings Adrian Peterson. The Big 12 is overall one of the best college sports conference in the country; with a lot historic memories that will forever be attach to it.
In this college conference series, we will catch up on former Big 12 football players that are currently on the Bears roster. *Nebraska and Colorado is excluded from this post and will be included in their new conferences in future posts*
Roy Williams WR
Williams was one of the best receivers to ever play at Texas which translated into him being a top 10 pick with Detroit selecting him 7th overall in the 2004 NFL Draft. His tenure in Detroit was up and down. His first year he proved he could shoulder the load when Charles Rodgers suffered a season ending injury tallying up 54 rec 817 yards and 8 touchdowns. When the Lions cut ties with Rodgers, Williams was officially the Lions #1 primary receiver. He would enjoy success under newly hired OC Mike Martz in 06 where he led the NFC in receiving yards with 1300 yards and earning a pro bowl appearance. He was on his way to another solid season in 07 before injuries hit him. Williams was shipped to Dallas in 08 for a 1st, 3rd, and 6th rounds picks in the 09 draft. Williams was supposed to be the heir apparent to Terrell Owens , but never really built a connection with Tony Romo and saw younger and hungrier WR's Miles Austin and Dez Bryant pass him up on the depth chart. Jerry Jones gave up on him and in 2011 Williams is now paired back up with the one OC that seemed to get the most out of his abilities in Mike Martz. Williams is looking for a career resurgence under Martz and Bear Franchise QB Jay Cutler.
Henry Melton DT
Melton started his career at Texas as a back-up RB compiling career numbers of 132 rushes for 625 yards and 16 touchdowns. Melton would later on in his career at Texas make the transition from RB to DE compiling 40 tackles (10 for loss) and 5 sacks for his career at Texas. Bears drafted Henry Melton in the 4th round in the 09 draft after he had a very impressive pro day. Melton came into the NFL as a 269 pound DE, but the Bears coaches felt his best position at the pro level was at DT lining up at the 3 technique. Melton wouldn't get playing time until the 2010 season where he was used mainly as a situational pass rusher. In 2011 Melton is believed to be in for a bigger role on the defensive line at his new weight at 295 pounds.
Richmond McGee P (editor note; he's now a former Bear)
McGee was primary the Longhorns punter for 4 years, but he also has experience at placekicking and field goals during his career at Texas. This is McGee's third summer with the Bears as they pretty much give McGee the opportunity to showcase his skills to other teams who are in need of a punter.
Joshua Moore CB
Moore was redshirted as a sophomore at Kansas State, but finished up the final two years as a full time starter. He finished his career at Kansas State compiling 175 tackles 6 interceptions and 2.5 sacks. The Bears selected Moore in the 5th round in 2010 bolster their depth at the CB position. He only appeared in a few games his rookie season primary on special teams, but is getting the chance this summer to compete for a starting job with Tim Jennings and Zackary Bowman.
Jake Laptad DE
Probably one of Kansas State best defensive linemen last year; Jake Laptad finished his career at Kansas State with 145 tackles 21.0 sacks 7 TL. Knowing how much GM Jerry Angelo, HC Lovie Smith, and DC Rod Maranelli value edge rushers; Laptad has a good opportunity to make this year's practice squad.
Bryan is a big corner at 6-2 191 pound who was solid his first two season at Baylor before injuries got in the way of his progression during his junior and senior seasons. With the Bears, the best he can probably do is making the practice squad or put together some good tape for other teams around the league to see.