All the Big 12-2 Conference news that is and isn't fit to read...
And some other stuff.
Is a top five finish possible? [ESPN Big 12 Blog]
Texas will start the season at No. 15 in both major polls, but Mack Brown's not shying away from expectations this season. He says his team could finish in the top five.
"I think if you didn't think that, Lord, you shouldn't be at Texas," Brown told reporters. "I think two years ago was not the norm for us. Last year we had a lot of growing to do to try to get back in the mix. We had our chances, didn't work out like we wanted it to, and this year I think we've got a chance to be in the mix."
The Los Angeles Times has Texas at No. 6 in their preseason poll. [LA Times]
Two quarterbacks equal no quarterbacks? [Dr. Saturday]
Receiver John Harris can block, too. [AAS]
"I can catch and take a hit," Harris said. "I have big hands and long arms. But I block. I think that's my niche."
There are high expectations for the Texas D. [AAS]
So overall the defensive picture is rosy for Texas fans. The challenge as the opener approaches is to keep the picture realistic.
Vaccaro's biggest concern, in fact? "Not getting into all the hype," he said.
The Horns have something to prove. [San Antonio Express-News]
Dalton Santos is easily a fan favorite. [ESPN]
"I'm coming to Texas and I'm bringing hell with me."
That’s what Santos told HornsNation in May, when the incoming freshman believed there was no doubt he was going to make the middle linebacker job his this fall.
Santos hasn’t done that yet. But he and equally confident freshman Peter Jinkens are backing up their talk in fall camp.
Poetic justice for those of you that cannot get the LHN. [Dallas Morning News]
"Unfortunately, these things often take time," he said. Dodds added that the short-term pain should be worth the long-term gain for viewers when network availability is expanded.
On a personal note, Dodds reported he cannot get LHN at his Austin area home.
Never fear! ESPN is talking to everyone. [Houston Chronicle]
As ESPN’s Longhorn Network commemorates the first anniversary today and prepares to televise Texas’ first two football games of 2012, the company’s distribution chief says talks are continuing with cable and satellite groups – and that it took four years for other ESPN properties to reach "critical mass" in audience availability.
Preschlack referred to "mischaracterizations" that talks regarding LHN were not ongoing and added, "We’re talking to everybody, including Time Warner and all the big players. … There is nothing more important that I’m working on."
West Virginia QB Geno Smith is a very talented guy. [ESPN]
This wasn't just a kid who was playing with paint. He was offered spots at some of the top high school art programs in the U.S. But Smith's other passion prevailed, and he became the No. 8 QB prospect in the nation at Miramar High in Florida's Broward County. While drawing remains a way for him to decompress, he says pursuing an art career in college would take away too much focus from the game (he's an English major). Besides, if all goes well, he won't be hurting for work.
"Mechanically, he's a first-round guy," says Holgorsen, who tutored this year's overall No. 22 pick, Brandon Weeden, at Oklahoma State in 2010. "Last season, a lot of Geno's success was due to natural ability. But now he fully understands the system."
Grandma knows best. [NewsOK]
Oklahoma State's offensive is so simple even a high school QB could run it. [NewsOK]
Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Todd Monken insists the Cowboys’ spread offensive system isn’t very complicated. It’s a similar scheme to what new quarterback Wes Lunt ran in high school — a key reason why the true freshman won the starting job.
The Pokes will be relying on freshmen this season. [NewsOK]
Wes Lunt is the headliner as the No. 1 quarterback. The others, all in backup roles: receivers C.J. Curry, Blake Webb and Austin Hays; cornerbacks Kevin Peterson and Ashton Lampkin. And more are pressing.Attrition in the sophomore and junior classes have forced the freshmen to get ready in a hurry. And youth rules overall, with redshirt freshmen and sophomores filling 19 more spots on the two- (and in some instances three-) deep.
The Jayhawks will be a better team, but... [SB Nation]
The Frogs are young. [Kansas City Star]
For starters, Patterson points out, this is the youngest team he has coached in his TCU tenure. Freshmen will play valuable roles on both sides of the ball.
"If they don't grow up then we'll probably not have the season we need to," Patterson said. "If you don't grow some guys up, then you don't have enough depth and you don't win as many games as we're used to here. You win championships with 2s and 3s."
TCU's move to the Big 12 was good for recruiting. [Ft. Worth Star-Telegram]
Mansfield senior safety George Baltimore, who holds several offers from top programs around the country, said the combination of TCU's move to the Big 12 and proximity sealed the deal for him. He committed in June.
"The Big 12 is one of the best conferences, other than the SEC. I mean the Big 12 is where it's at and where I always saw myself playing," Baltimore said. "It came down to Arkansas and TCU and I wanted to stay close to home, stay close to my mom and all the people I know in the Metroplex."
What conference freshmen will have the biggest impact? [Athlon Sports]
Kansas State came up with a great marketing campaign. [The Wichita Eagle]
When a group of Kansas State athletic officials came up with the idea to turn Bill Snyder’s 16 goals for success into a series of Internet videos, they thought they had discovered a good way to promote the Wildcats’ football program and stir interest for the upcoming season.
It turned out even better.
Conference realignment is like junior high dating. [KU Sports]
He said he has heard other schools are interested in joining the Big 12.
"We are contacted all the time by institutions that say ... it’s kind of like junior high dating: ‘Would you like him if he liked you?’ and that sort of back-channel stuff. You can’t afford to ignore it, but you can’t afford to dwell on it. We have too many other important things to do," he said.
You tell 'em, Bob. [CBS Sports]
"I think it's fair to say that some [conferences] that have gotten larger are now wondering if it's going to be worth it," Bowlsby said Thursday while visiting Kansas on a conference-wide tour. "There are complexities, especially regarding some scheduling issues, that have really caused some problems."
"We're feeling pretty good about 10 [teams]. We're also feeling good we brought in two ranked football teams in exchange for the two that moved out."
TCU inherited A&M's old schedule. [NewsOK]
The major difference between the Big 12 and the SEC? [Houston Chronicle]
Texas football is not unaccustomed to institutional loyalty from the days of the Southwest Conference, which preceded the SEC by 20 years and ticked along quite nicely until it unraveled in mutual self-destruction in the late 1980s and 1990s.
But even in the SWC's heyday, the focus was on the individual schools. Today, when SEC fans aren't yelling "Woo, pig, sooey" or "Roll, Tide" or "Hoddy toddy," for the Hogs, the Crimson Tide or the Ole Miss Rebels, they're probably chanting "S-E-C, S-E-C."
Congrats K-State. Kansas can give you their undivided attention. [Kansas City Star]
What you need to know about games in Ft. Worth. [San Antonio Express-News]
Opposing Big 12 teams will grow to hate the sound of the "Frog Horn," a 3,000-pound noisemaker custom-built for the school in 1994. It blows every time the Horned Frogs score at their home stadium.
By 2013, the college football landscape will look very different. [NY Times]
Two Aggies debate the college football playoff. [AL.com]
The collected wisdom of Barry Switzer. [NewsOK]
You don’t want to go to Bristol, Connecticut. It’s like going to Russia.
Mitt Romney should be a Sooner fan. [NewsOK]
Selling your brand and your soul. Have any doubts about the sleazy business side of college athletics? [Sports Business Digest]
Who are the movers and shakers in college football? [Yahoo Sports]
The WAC is on the verge of extinction. [Fox Sports]
In other words, those people have nothing else but their SEC team? [NY Times]
What SEC schools call a "potential recruiting irregularity" we call an NCAA violation of the rules. [Sporting News]
The Curse of the Bear. [San Antonio Express-News]
Bryant went on to win six national titles at Alabama, while the Aggies are still in search of their first national championship since 1939. In 2002, A&M returned the favor of coach theft by nabbing Alabama's leader, Dennis Franchione, then a rising star in the business.
But Franchione finished 32-28 over five seasons at A&M, prompting guffaws from Tuscaloosa — and in what some dubbed "The Curse of the Bear" — especially since Alabama has won two national titles under Saban, who replaced the mediocre Mike Shula.
"We were very upset at the time," said Woodall, smiling widely at the memory of Franchione splitting Tuscaloosa for College Station. "Now we're really happy with the way everything transpired. We have Nick Saban, so it worked out for the best."
Football starts this Thursday! [BON]
BDR doesn't endorse any of the rubbish out there in the interwebs, we just link to it. For a lot more daily rubbish on a somewhat timely basis, follow me on Twitter.com/dimecoverage.