Opportunity knocks at Baylor, and the Bears expect Shock to answer.

The Big 12 favorites are best known for their passing game and the headiner Heisman candidate in the pocket, Bryce Petty. But running back Shock Linwood is primed to emerge as a star in what stacks up as one of the best offenses in the nation yet again.

Linwood is among notable breakout players named by college football correspondents for The Sports Xchange.

RB Shock Linwood, Baylor: He stepped into the spotlight when Bears backs Glasco Martin and Lache Seastrunk were injured during the 2013 season. Seastrunk is now in the NFL, and the job belongs to Linwood. He rushed for 182 yards against Oklahoma when Seastrunk went down and continued to be a presence in the rushing game. Linwood finished the season second on the team in rushing with 894 yards and should gouge defenses perspiring over slowing down quarterback Bryce Petty.

RB Aaron Wimberly, Iowa State: He showed flashes last season when he rushed for 100-plus yards against Tulsa and Texas, but injuries slowed him last season. The 5-foot-9, 177-pound Wimberly isn't built to carry the ball 25 times a game, but is an explosive playmaker. Coaches talk about him topping the 1,000-yard mark. If he stays healthy he could be one of the leading Big 12 rushers.

CB Daryl Worley, West Virginia: Uttering the term shutdown cornerback in the Big 12 borders on blasphemy, but the 6-foot-1 Mountainners' sophomore closely resembled one as a true freshman in 2013. If the Mountaineers can keep heat on quarterbacks with the front seven, Worley will be a household name well beyond conference boundaries by November.

WR Tony Pierson, Kansas: This label could be a bit of a misnomer for a player who was once a standout rusher for the Jayhawks, but the speed possessed by Pierson makes him a dangerous threat if Kansas can establish other dependable receivers. A series of concussions led to the position change and also kept Pierson from being subjected to contact during the spring. He playmaking ability is known -- he needs to prove his durability.

LB Dominique Alexander, Oklahoma: Alexander was thrust into the starting lineup last season when Corey Nelson was lost for the season just before the Texas game. Alexander wound up with 80 tackles, second-most on the team. He'll play an even more integral role this season in the second year of Mike Stoops' 3-4 defense.

LB Ryan Simmons, Oklahoma State: With his move from the weak side to the middle as a replacement for Caleb Lavey, Simmons has the confidence of his coaches to perform at a key position. As a starter last season, Simmons was in on 67 tackles, including nine for loss. Must step up quickly to account for inexperience at the other two linebacking spots. Simmons knows how to bring it considering he was the defensive MVP in a state championship game for Steele H.S. in Cibolo, Texas.

DE Cedric Reed, Texas: OK, so he doesn't have a whole lot of breaking out left to do, but with the departure of Jackson Jeffcoat, the spotlight will shift to Reed. As a junior, Reed tallied 10 sacks and forced five fumbles to earn first-team All-Big 12 honors on the Associated Press and San Antonio Express News teams.

RB Trey Williams, Texas A&M: He averaged 7.0 yards per carry while rushing for 406 yards and six touchdowns. Those stats came despite a small fraction of the carries with Johnny Manziel and Ben Malena taking a big chunk of the totes. Now Williams figures to be a more relied upon part of the running game with Malena and Manziel both departed.

WR Ty Slanina, TCU: Although he is not the most gifted receiver among those who will continue to the new spread attack TCU is installing, Slanina has the possession skills to keep drives alive with his precise routes. He drew two starts last season and snagged 19 receptions.

RB DeAndre Washington, Texas Tech: An opportunity was clearly given to the junior, who rushed for 450 yards last season and is the only Red Raiders' only experienced rusher after Kenny Williams was moved to linebacker. Williams happens to be a two-time rushing leader at Tech. Washington broke in with Tech in 2011 before a knee injury at the end of that season prompted a long recovery.