In this week's Big 12 Take Two, we debate the best linebacker left off the top-five all-time ranking:
Take 1: Brandon Chatmon -- Kansas State LB Arthur Brown
Brown only spent a couple of seasons in the Big 12 but those two seasons were unbelievable. The former Wildcat had 101 tackles in 2011 and 100 tackles in 2012. He set the tone for the K-State defense in both seasons after spending two years at Miami.
The Kansas native put fear in the hearts of running backs and receivers across the conference. He didn’t have the ideal height or measurables but his fearless style of play and active playmaking was second to none and would have made him a favorite of any defensive coordinator.
Brown finished his time at K-State with 201 tackles (122 solo) including 16.5 tackles for loss, three sacks and three interceptions. The 2012 Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and 2011 Big 12 Defensive Newcomer of the Year was an impact player as soon as he put on a Wildcats uniform, helping K-State go 21-5 during his time in Manhattan.
I can’t say any of the five linebackers who earned a spot on our list did not deserve it but Brown was one of the best linebackers ever to show his skills in Big 12 stadiums and would fit in right alongside the five linebackers who landed on our all-time list.
Take 2: Jake Trotter -- K-State LB Mark Simoneau
I'm going with another K-State linebacker here.
The late 1990s K-State teams haven't gotten much representation in the top-five rankings, but those squads had some ballplayers. Simoneau was among them, and a big reason why K-State went 42-7 during his four seasons in Manhattan while coming a game away from making the national championship.
Simoneau ranks in the top 10 in Big 12 history in both fumbles recovered and fumbles forced. He was the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year in 1999 and a consensus All-American, and became just the second K-State player ever to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.