It’s the after 4th of July recovery and we’re inching ever so close to the start of the 2009 college football season. Since we are getting close and Mascot Monday is reserved for the off season, we are going to profile the mascots of the Big 12 teams favored to win their division, starting with the Kansas Jayhawks very own Big Jay and Baby Jay, with the other Big 12 team coming next month. A Jayhawk has no known animal classification, but stands for something that happened before the Civil War. We’ll figure out what they were thinking way back when and lay a couple of eggs on the way. Get ready, Kansas City, here’s Big Jay and Baby Jay.
It’s Independence Day weekend coming up and we’re getting ready to rock out and blow up some cans with Black Cats. So in preparation of the the fireworks menagerie, we’re gonna give you more bang for your buck on this week’s Crib Sheet. Before everyone goes out to stick explosives into other containers and shoot bottle rockets off, please remember to be careful, especially your hands. They need to be healthy to handle the frosty beverages over the weekend and later on in the fall for college football. Now here’s this week’s Crib Sheet:
- Mark your calendars, the Michigan vs. Notre Dame game September 12 at 3:30 pm ET. Both programs are looking to rebound and we should be witnessing a treat as two boisterous head coaches fight for their jobs.
- To no surprise, the BCS rejected the Mountain West’s proposal of an eight team playoff. Hopefully this will end the playoff talk for awhile. We all know this is not going away forever.
- Texas student assistant coach Matt Nader got a big ole gun pulled on him at the golf course last week. Apparently he was arguing with a Texan and he later showed up with a gun ready to go. Seeing as this all took place in Texas, I’m not too surprised. Crazy thing was the gun toting Texan was 73, talk about a cranky golfer.
- After another death and settlement from complications due to sickle cell traits at Rice University, the NCAA will start recommending that test for sickle cell issues be conducted at universities. After this and the death of former Missouri Tiger Aaron O’Neil, it would make more sense to require the testing of players for these issues. The NCAA and schools make bank off of these kids, let’s make sure they get taken care of while they promote the schools on the field.
- Look out Missouri Tigers, the kid of a maybe future NFL Hall of Famer is coming your way in Derrion Thomas. He wasn’t high up on anyone’s radar due to only one year of playing high school ball, but he does look and play like his dead dad. Let’s hope this walk on will do well over in Columbia. My advice to Derrion: remember to wear a seat belt.
- USA Today has a profile of Kansas quarterback Todd Reesing. It looks like it’s another one of those, short Big 12 quarterback come from behind stories. The difference this time is Kansas might actually have what it takes to win the big game. They did it on the Orange Bowl, maybe it’s their year this year. Sorry Chase Daniels, have fun trying to play for the Redskins.
It’s College World Series time and while we aren’t too hip on college baseball yet we do want to congratulate the Big 12 on getting EIGHT teams into the College World Series. On a more local note, Kansas State is still alive as they play Rice tonight for a chance to move on to the super regionals. Feeling inspired by that and the scorching weather, this week’s Mascot Monday will take a look at an advancing, number one seeded, Arizona State’s Sparky the Sun Devil. From the iterations of mascots before to the family friendly inspiration of the current Sparky, we can see that this top party school has one spicy meatball of a mascot. So while we are waiting for the football season to start, under 100 days to go by the way, and while we endure the massive ting of the aluminum baseball bat, let’s numb the senses with Sparky.
The heavy loaded week of allergies couldn’t stop the KCCGD crew from sneezing and coughing their way through another week of news. We’re loaded up on all sorts of over the counter goodies to help bring you the latest in the greatest sport ever, college football. Bring some kleenex, because either the fantastic writing or huge pollen count will bring tears to your eyes. We hope its the former. Here’s this week Crib Sheet:
- Ron Prince, former Kansas State head coach, must be laughing pretty heartily right now. Kansas State made known the details of a ‘secret agreement’ that would dump an extra $3.5 million on a company that Prince created in the case that he would be fired without cause. This was signed with his contract extension last year by former athletic director, Bob Krause. Krause resigned because of the situation. Prince’s lawyer says the lawsuit is without merit, and Prince couldn’t be contacted for comment. Because you can’t really talk while gut-laughing to the point of puking. This whole situation makes me want to puke. Wefald’s legacy is tarnished and K-State as he gave his ‘old friend’ the job in the first place. What ‘old friend’ keeps this part of the deal secret? I talked about how much of a dunderhead Krause was when they fired Prince and know we’re seeing just how far and deep his ineptness set the program back. The Kansas City Star also has filings. It’s sad day to be a Wildcat fan.
- The Big 12 athletic directors (the real ones) met last week and decided to punt the 3 way tiebreaker rule that the coaches passed to them on. So it seems the rule is here to say, while they open up for more discussion and waffling on the issue. The chance is so small anyway that once the season starts and ends, people will forget about the unique rule.
- Meanwhile, the SEC coaches are bickering down in Florida for their annual meeting. The main mouth work comes from Tennessee’s Lane Kiffin and South Carolina’s Steve Spurrier. Yes the New Ball Coach versus the Ole Ball Coach. They are still duking it out over the cheating question Spurrier asked. The other coaches ducked and it seemed like they were heading to the bars to scope out the chicks or something. Very strange comradery indeed. Time to circle the matchup on the schedule.
- Looks like the Big 12 won’t sit down the officials if they perform poorly. That’s a shame really because after the last couple of years of bad calls, the Big 12 could use some consequence over there.
- The Big 12, however, will pay out a record $130 million earned last year in athletic payouts. It seems being the 2nd best conference in football and having a national champion in basketball helped. Let’s hope they use that money to make them number 1 in football.
- The final USA Today coaches poll next year will be anonymous. Typically that final vote helps to decide who will play in the national title game. Chances are that’s a good thing for the coaches. It will help avoid any death threats for deciding votes.
Not much happening this week in the ways of college football. The kids are graduating and commencement speeches are happening all over. That just means we are a few more months away from some serious college football. Speaking of the football side of college, some players have left and more of the bigger named ones are coming back. What does that mean? A potential repeat of last year’s championship game. Or Texas might slip in and take on Florida again. Who knows? We’ll have our predictions coming up later. For now, congrats to the graduates as you take a new step into the real world and out of the 4 year party that is college. The hangover will be real short, trust me. Here’s this week’s news:
- Greg Paulus made up his mind and he’s heading to Syracuse to be an Orangemen. The rumor, along with other rumors and visits, started when the hype around this guy did. I’m sure he’ll be happy for a year out in the Big East. And no, Syracuse doesn’t matter anymore. He might show some flashes but he’s really just Syracuse’s main recruiting tool now.
- The guff Big 12 officiating has gotten in the last couple of years may have an old solution, thanks to Nebraska athletic director Tom Osburne. He wants to introduce and old Big 8 rule to bench officials that are performing poorly. If the stripes know they could get benched and docked a week’s worth of pay that may help them pay just a little more attention to the action on the field.
- John Currie is your new Kansas State athletic director. Straight out of Tennessee, Currie brings some youth and vigor to the position that was briefly held by an internal, pencil pushing, bumbling amateur in Bob Krause. Hopefully Currie will make his mark when he helps choose Bill Snyder’s successor in a couple of years.
- The old ball coach in Steve Spurrier is jabbing a spur in the saddle of both his former employer’s coach Urban Meyer and current Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weiss. Surrier went on radio and seeded the rumor that if Meyer has another big year, he may take over as the head coach in domerland. We already laid down the ultimatum on Weiss and this little double jab only deepens the severity of Weiss’s challange this year, lest he be heckled by President Obama or they erase his history. Now whether Meyer will actually do it is another thing because he turned down the offer before. But if Tim Tebow reigns in another title there may be nowhere else to go for glory.
So some news outlets are saying that May is the black hole of news for college football. We here at the KCCGD are diligent in digging up interesting news and actually found enough to fill a column this week. We’ll weather this storm together and hopefully ride out into June when practices start. For now let’s do our best to ignore all of this lame-o baseball, weak basketball and hockey playoffs, and a post NFL draft hangover. Here’s this week’s ration:
- Holey Toledo! Some football players including some basketball players from the University of Toledo were indicted on point shaving charges. Nobody likes to see players go at it light. Especially if they are getting paid for it. Okay, I give in. I just wanted to say Holey Toledo!
- The Big 12 coaches decided to keep the tie breaking rule. Huh? Bo Pelini goes on the comment about how no matter what the 3rd team left out will get the shaft. Okay, that’s understandable. Is there a better way to break the tie? We say rock, paper, scissors.
- It looks like the Utah Attorney General is trying to push for a Senate run with his latest comments about the BCS. Let’s look at it from a point of view perspective. An undefeated team in football and no national title. They have the right to be upset. The way they are going about it? Mmmm not so much. A more clever way would be to rally support from all the non BCS conferences and begin to push as a whole on the BCS conferences. If you really wanted to shake their boots, don’t schedule games with them. Play outside of the BCS. The BCS conferences would then freak becauces of the lack of weak team warm ups at the beginning of the season.
- Sam Keller, a football alum from Nebraska, is suing EA Sports and the NCAA for using the likeness of athelets to make money off the games. This is a hard one to call. More and more the argument is growing for student-atheletes to be paid for promoting the school through sports. While there is a pandora’s box of enabling that, surely the least they can do is up the stipend in terms of the scholarship and toss in a couple of Xboxes to boot.
- ESPN blogger Tim Griffin takes us on a trip to the past and review a lesson taught to us by Mark Mangino of Kansas. The old quote talks about how Mangino wanted to keep the spirit of the rivalry in tact. Now that the tables are turned it seems that maybe this rivalry will be alive an well in Manhattan this year. Snyder and Mangino go at it again. I was at the game last year and as a Wildcat fan it stung hard. Now there’s a fresh start and we hope that at the very least it is competitive because Kansas is the definite favorite.
- So someone is selling a 2005 Rose Bowl ring belonging to former Texas Longhorn lineman Austin Sendlein on eBay, including his 2004 ring. It looks as though he left it in the hotel room he was staying at in Columbus, Ohio to watch his brother play. Seems that Buckeye fans don’t take to kindly to Longhorn folk. Although he did goof and leave it in the hotel room. Linemen are supposed to be smart.
For some reason this week people are scared of the swine er h2n1 flu. It’s a flu, usually if you are really young or super old it will hurt you bad. The oncoming pandemic only points out that yes, the United States is a clean nation. Thanks to all of the pump bottles of disinfectant gels pushing out the very lifeblood of our safety, we can be fully prepared for a Real American Flu. Not some cheap Mexican knock off. So I say, lick and finger everything is sight! It’s okay! And while you’re at it, suck on this week’s Crib Sheet:
- Looks like LSU head football coach Les Miles will be a Twittering away on the sidelines this year. He says it’s for a straight up recruiting hit. That make sense. The kids these days with their tweeting and twatting. My guess is this time next year Twittering will be banned for coaches.
- Joe Paterno is wise for his old age. Even he says that the Big Ten should drop the charade and go get themselves a 12 member. He’s right about the wait time to play big ball. Hopefully someone will listen over there. We’re looking at you, Notre Dame.
- Not to be completely hypocritical, but Congress last week rolled the BCS to tongue bath them in absurdity, trying to intimidate them to change the system for playoffs. Many, and we mean many, articles splashed across the net talking about this one. Here’s the gist: It’s about money and Congress doesn’t have time to do it. Even if they did, they would break current contracts. This of course was in between all the politiking and grandstanding.
- Focusing on a rule change that could actually help, the Big 12 Coaches (vi their father like athletic directors) will chew on the tiebreaker rule and spit something out after they return from their upcoming annual meeting. After the 3 way tiebreaker fiasco from last season, we’re glad they are getting together and figuring that low percantage possible finish out.
- Maybe while they’re down there, they can figure out why they play only 22.9% of their non-conference games against teams from other BCS conferences, the lowest among BCS conferences. Oh wait, most of the coaches in the league come from the Bill Snyder trunk of coaching. And Bill Snyder is back. Looks like weak schedules are here to stay. It’s really all about the conference competition. Seriously.
In case you didn’t notice, the professional baseball season is under way. Isn’t that great! Just like what Beano Cook says, it just means that the football season is getting closer! We here at the KCCGD do not cover college baseball but we’re sure it’s really exciting. If the major leagues didn’t draft all of the real talent first, we’re sure it would be better. This is the same problem basketball suffers from. Which we don’t cover too (yet). At some point, once the staff gets filled out, we’ll cover the more important college sports for the Kansas City area. Until then, here’s this week’s college football news:
- The vaunted, Charlie Weiss led, Notre Dame Fighting Irish Football Head Coach, er, Charlie Weiss confirmed that we was thinking about leaving the program. He asked his family about after weighing options and a major lumping from USC to close out last season. Last year, they were 7-6. If they can bump that up a win or two and win the bowl, he should be safe. If he dips, he’s a goner.
- Michigan was offering Greg Paulus a chance to vie for quarterback this year. Paulus, who didn’t even toss a ball around when he was visiting the campus, now has the option to join the graduate program and the football team. This is turning into a crazy situation. Is Rich Rodriguez desperate? Or does he see a golden opportunity. This story wasn’t done, however. Paulus skipped the Wolverines and now is visiting both Nebraska and Syracuse. Good luck to whoever wastes their time on the guy.
- The Big 12 comes in at number 3 in terms of attendance broken out by conference last year. It’s a 3% jump whereas number 1 SEC grew by about 2% and number 2 Big 10 dropped by about 1%. It looks like that trend may continue next year, which will keep this writer happy and bring hope to eventually passing the Big 10 in attendance.
- Oklahoma can’t surf the internet as much, due to NCAA voliations and a new policy from the administration. If you are an Oklahoma Sooner, athlete or alumni, this site is safe to use. Tell your friends and family. We are So0ner friendly. Kinda.
- Colby Whitlock from Texas Tech gives major props to wrestling, as Tim Griffin writes. As a former high school football player/wrestler I can attest to how much more an athlete can gain by participating a wrestling. Balance, speed, and endurance will raise up, which is important for the the fat middle guys like myself. The actual wrestling part I didn’t like, but the condition part was great.
- The Mountain West Commissioner did a song and dance to argue for the proposed playoff structure for the BCS. It seems Utah won’t let this go. Hopefully a nice little press release will send this one away. Methinks it won’t go, but one can hope.
We kicked off the off season with our first Mascot Monday here at the KCCGD and now we’re continuing the trend with our first edition of the Crib Sheet. Yup, it’s a weekly news round up of college football with our own little Jamaican Jerk style spice tossed on top. Much like how a good number of student-atheletes need a crib sheet to get by the student part, well lay out what you need to know for college football news wise. Chances are you’ll get better news elsewhere, but you won’t walk away from it with a minty fresh feeling like you would hitting up the Sheet. So buckle up because here we go:
- Notre Dame quelled the rumors that John Gruden will be the new had coach. Charlie Weiss just save his behind whooping Hawaii, why would they go with anyone else. Weiss has one more year and Gruden is still NFL, maybe even for the Chiefs.
- Kansas names Kerry Locklin as their new D-Line coach. He replaces Joe Bob Clemens as Joe Bob comes back home to K-State. Hopefully it was part of some ellaborate, Bill Snyder led, recon mission to sniff out the Jayhawks scheme so the Wildcats can notch a win in forever against the Hawks.
- Michigan hires Greg Robinson as the new Defensive Coordinator. Whoah, so Syracuse dumps him after the Kansas City Chiefs dump him, and now Rich Rodrieguez wants him? I say take him. Let’s hope the tradition of losing carries over to the Wolverines just enough to keep them mediocre.
- Washington had to report a recruiting violation to the PAC 10. Steve Sarkisian is off to a big start by breaking some rules. Looks like the Huskies are not shaking off the Neuheisel stigma anytime soon.
- Tim Griffin tells us that the Big 12 North is cherry picking the hell out of Texas for recruits. Tell us something we don’t know, Tim. Sheezuz.
- Recruiting sucks for the Big 10 this year. Apparently 2 schools can claim five star recruits (Ohio State and Michigan duh). Is this the beginning of the end? Chances are the Big 10 tanking will break the stranglehold on the Rose Bowl.
- In the “Oh my God, he can still get a job” department: Ron Prince is rummored as being in the running for the Offensive Coordinator for Miami o’ Florida. Great, so he can coach down a talented quarterback and jack up some trick plays for the Hurricanes? I’m sold.
- Finally, Former Missouri Quarterback Chase Daniel is a superstar at ESPN. Source indicate he will also film a commercial with Pittsburgh Steelers quaterback Ben Roethlisburger. Chase will play Ben’s younger, less talented brother while they take turns throwing a football at the back of Stuart Scott’s head. Who will knock out the glass eye first? Tune in and find out.
Welp that’s it for round one of the Crib Sheet. Well be back every Wednesday to spit up nuggets of news we chowed down on from previous week. Until then, eat your vitamins and say your prayers, brotha. Yup, the Yeti’s filling his time by watching a lil wrasslin’ Sunday by way of the Royal Rumble. Hey, you gotta pass the time in the off season somewho. As Ric Flair would say, “WHOOOOOOOO!”
To quote Keith Jackson, “WHOA NELLY!” What a game Monday night! Apparently a month of planning from Coach Tressel can help the Ohio State Buckeyes make a game against the Texas Longhorns. The McCoy/Crosby connection toward the end of the game reminded me of the Harrell/Crabtree connection made from Texas Tech earlier this year. The Longhorns eeked out of the Fiesta Bowl with a win and the Ohio State Buckeyes go home a BCS bust (again).
We’re running into the last stretch of big games and we are getting ready for the final 3 games of the college football season. The last week brought us some upsets, some blowouts, some intrigue, and some fatter bellies and stinkier rooms. Bowl season so far has proved to be, well, anticlimactic but we’re geared up for Florida vs Oklahoma. The other two games landed on nonplussed for our feelings.
The vaunted, Charlie Weiss led, Notre Dame fighting Irish played hard for their coached and blew the heat off of him by blowing out Hawaii in the, you guessed it, the Hawaii Bowl. The Pac-10 quieted all detractors by going undefeated in their bowls year, topping it off with a USC blowout of the somewhat Paterno led Penn State Nittany Lions. Speaking of the Big 10, they are 1-5 in bowls this year with one game left to go. The Purple Yeti loved the finish to the Kentucky and East Carolina game when Kentucky’s defensive lineman Ventrell Jenkins stiffed armed East Carolina’s Partrick Pinkey after picking him off and tumbled into the endzone for the winning score 25-19.
But that’s not all that happened. The Big 12 so far has a decent showing going with Missouri kicking it off and barely chugging by Northwestern. The Tigers should’ve lost the game but the found a way to come out on top. I was in the gym when Oklahoma State was up 17-7 over Oregon at half and dang near dropped my jaw to the floow when I saw the final score later, Oregon 42, Oklahoma State 31. KU handled Minnesota rather easily, which worked out well for the evening as Wii Sports were to be had. The best game of New Year’s Day happened to be the Gator Bowl where Nebraska came from behind to beat the Clemson Tigers. Too bad Texas Tech couldn’t make a case for being in the title chase when Ole Miss handed them an Ole Whuppin 47-34 in the Cotton Bowl.