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Bevo's Daily Roundup - August 20, 2009

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16 days until the Louisiana-Monroe game

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Quarterback Colt McCoy explains the team's nose-to-the-grindstone mindset during a media availability Sunday. "If you want to be great, if you want to be the best you can be, there's no easy days. There's no easy way out," McCoy said.

From The Dallas Morning News

This is some of the ESPN The Magazine profile article on Colt McCoy.

McCoy is still at the top of the Heisman Pundit's watch list.

1. Colt McCoy, Texas–Last year’s Heisman runner up has accomplished the impressive feat of keeping up with Tim Tebow’s publicity machine in the offseason.  For instance, while Tebow is on the cover of Sports Illustrated, McCoy is on the cover of ESPN The Magazine.  McCoy is the senior quarterback of a traditional Heisman power and will help his team compete for a national title.  The perception out there is that perhaps he should’ve won the award last year and, as a result, voters will look to him first in 2009.  He had fantastic numbers in 2008, but they weren’t so amazing that they can’t be duplicated or surpassed.  He will have big games on TV against Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas A&M (on Thanksgiving) to impress the voters (and also the possibility of the Big 12 title game).  He’s got most of his offensive line returning, plus plenty of weapons at receiver, so his stats should not suffer.  Last year, he finished second to Sam Bradford in the Southwest and Far West regions, so much of Bradford’s support in those areas could go his way in 2009.  He is a likeable guy and so far has not been oversaturated in the media.  All other things being equal, McCoy has the best chance of winning the 2009 Heisman Trophy.

Jordan Shipley isn't comfortable in the limelight.

But this quiet, modest playmaker from Burnet High School doesn't like to be in the limelight. He'll let the rest of his teammates have the attention.

"I'm just here to play football. I just love to play the game, and when we do get the chance to be in the limelight, I think the main thing for me and Colt both is we want to do it the right way. Be a good influence to kids and to the people from our hometowns," said Shipley.

Sergio KIndle made Sporting News' preseason All-Amercian team.

There's seems to be a consensus on Kindle's talent.

"Sergio is a beast," states Colt McCoy.

"Sergio is just so powerful. He just runs over them and so quick," adds his coach, Mack Brown.

The Horns are high tech when it comes to heat management.

Every day, between 12 and 24 Longhorns players deemed high-risk for heat-related illnesses take a pill that allows Boyd and other Texas trainers to track their core body temperature by pressing a button.

The silicone-coated CorTemp capsule — which is the size of a vitamin and contains batteries, thermometers and radio transmitters — is swallowed about five hours before practice begins. During that time, the pill makes its way to the player's intestines. Once there, it keeps a constant reading of the player's temperature before the pill is passed naturally.

Many players wear special shirts designed by Nike to help cool air flow through the chest and shoulder area.

The shirts have a tube on the back of the neck. That tube connects to a sideline machine, which players can attach the tube to for cold air of about 40-50 degrees to be dispersed throughout the shirt.

"It feels great," Texas defensive end Sergio Kindle said. "You get outside for 10 minutes and you start sweating like crazy. So that cold air really feels good."

 

 

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The Aggies just want to get over it and move on.

"Right or wrong, we come in with our coaches or how we do things and are pretty demanding about doing it a certain way," Sherman said. "It’s awful tough on a group of seniors maybe that you didn’t recruit, so we had some transitional issues."

A&M sophomore free safety Trent Hunter doesn’t mince words when describing what happened last season when he apparently felt some of the Aggie upperclassmen didn’t care to be on the same page as Sherman’s coaching staff.

"I guess that was almost like a cop-out, (saying), ‘Oh, it’s a new system. We can’t buy into it. It’s a new head coach,’" Hunter said. "At the same time, you’ve got to play with the guys who are beside you, not the guys who are giving you the playbook.

"So if we had a problem (last year), I don’t think it was the new coaches, I think it was that some guys didn’t really have that ‘want to’ to buy in."

Von Miller reminds people of Aggie great Ray Childress.

Texas A&M pass-rusher Von Miller craves getting in the face of a quarterback. But face time with the man Miller has drawn a few early comparisons to is another matter.

"It's an extreme honor to even be in the same sentence as Ray Childress," Miller said Tuesday of the Aggies' two-time All-American defensive end. "I've seen him at practice, but I really haven't spoken to him. Part of it's just kind of nervousness.

Just what you have been waiting for. There is a new book out on Aggie Football.

 

 

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Oklahoma State

He's back.

As expected, Oklahoma State quarterback Zac Robinson returned to practice Tuesday after he missed more than a week of preseason work with a pulled hamstring.

Coach Mike Gundy said last week that Robinson would miss through the Cowboys' first scrimmage last Saturday. Gundy wanted to have the opportunity to have junior Alex Cate and sophomore Brandon Weeden to get more work as he settles on a backup.

Unfortunately, Zac Robinson never learned how to slide. This makes his coach a little nervous.

"If the defense allows us the opportunity for the quarterback to run, we’ll run him," Gundy said. "I would like for him to protect himself some after he runs, or in a scrambling situation. His demeanor and his mentality have been to run through tacklers.

"And that doesn’t really fire me up right now."

Robinson, however, knows no other way.

He’s a football player after all, not some base stealer on the ball diamond.

"I still don’t know how to slide," said Robinson, who returned to practice Tuesday after missing a week with a slight leg muscle pull. "Still haven’t figured that out."

Things are going well in Stillwater, according to Mike Gundy.

Mike Gundy was happy with his team’s performance in Saturday’s scrimmage. And he was even happier after watching the game film of the 115-play workout.

"For the first time in a number of years, I felt better after I watched the tape than I felt before," Gundy said. "The effort was good, and the players were further ahead than I thought they would be."

 

Oklahoma

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Kicker Jimmy Stevens knows the official Sooner hand sign. Photo from The Oklahoman.

The offensive line looked good in the latest scrimmage.

If you don't like the opinion, just sue. Mike Balogun's eligibility came into question and the NCAA decertified him. Balogun filed a lawsuit against the NCAA was granted a temporary restraining order. He even wants $10,000 in damages.

Balgoun update: Florida State turned in OU to the NCAA.

Safety Nic Harris left for the NFL. NewsOK has a Q&A with his replacement, Sam Proctor.

 

 

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The North

This is all you get. The Nebraska starting jobs are still not settled, Bo Pelini is the only coach allowed to go into any depth on injury issues, and he doesn’t speak on Tuesday. So that sums up the Cornhuskers for today. Apparently the Great One speaks on Wednesday so there may be some news tomorrow.

A species quickly becoming extinct: fullback. Colorado will enter this season with a true fullback.

Junior Carson Coffman was the perceived starter, but the Kansas State signal caller spot is still open. In fact, it is difficult to tell Carson and Grant Gregory apart.

"Just about every time I seem to think somebody is starting to pull away, they find a way to come to the pack or the pack closes the gap," he said. "I would say, on any given day, they’re probably pretty equal."

Snyder wants a starter at least a week before the Sept. 5 opener against Massachusetts.

The Wildcats are being plagued by injuries.

After running a story just yesterday about the riches of depth at Defensive End, Coach Snyder announced that Brandon Harold imjured his knee and may be out for some time. Although a blow to the depth at defensive end, Harold's injury will open up the opportunity for competition at one DE spot with many candidates having a chance to step up their game and replace Harold.

During a Tuesday press conference, coach Bill Snyder revealed that he had "... a bunch of players that were gimping around right now." More injuries than normal? "Probably so, probably so," he answered.

Gary Pinkel gets some good news.

MRIs showed starting offensive tackle Dan Hoch has only a sprained knee and that reserve wide receiver Brandon Gerau merely a bone bruise to a knee.

"He will hopefully be ready by the Illinois game," Coach Gary Pinkel said of Hoch.

At the most, Hoch is expected to miss two weeks. Gerau could be back within a week.

Meanwhile, freshman defensive lineman Marvin Foster is gone for the year. Pinkel said Foster had undergone successful arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn ACL.

Missouri defensive tackle Jaron Baston is not pleased with the Fourth Estate.

Missouri, coming off its greatest two-year stretch in 47 years, is being dogged into also-ran status in the North Division.

Like Lee Corso on one of his more frantic rants, Baston is telling the world that Missouri isn't going away.

"Right now we're in a situation where the media and people are writing us off to have a bad season because we lost great talent," Baston said. "But we've still got great talent. We're still hungry to win."

One game changed everything for Iowa State coach Paul Rhodes.

It was Rhoads, then Pittsburgh's defensive coordinator, who shut down Pat White and No. 2-ranked West Virginia 13-9 to knock the Mountaineers out of the national title picture. West Virginia, with 60,000 screaming fans behind it, had the BCS title at its fingertips. Pittsburgh, at 4-7 and a 28-point underdog, was going back to Pittsburgh, win or lose.

The game changed the fortunes of people and schools. West Virginia coach Rich Rodriguez jumped ship to Michigan. Bill Stewart got his long-awaited break at West Virginia.

"It changed mine," said Rhoads, who came to Iowa State after a year at Auburn. "I probably wouldn't have been able to leave Pitt without that win that year."


The South

Some notes from the Red Raiders practice:

Taylor Potts will be just fine as a starting quarterback. He's rangy, possesses as good an arm as advertised and seems very comfortable in Mike Leach's system finding receivers. That said, he probably needs to get rid of the ball a little quicker. And until we see him in game action, no one really knows

A log sent Alex Torres away from the Air Force Academy and on to Mike Leach.

It seemed like any other run, just an early-morning training run through the woods in Colorado Springs, Colo.

He never saw the log, tripped -- and Alex Torres had a dramatic change in his young football life.

These days, the former Franklin High School star is going through the hot and heavy two-a-days with the Texas Tech Red Raiders, chasing a chance to be an integral part of that high-flying, air-raid offense. It was a long and tricky trail from that morning at the Air Force Academy to two-a-days in Lubbock. But Torres is excited about it all.

Ryan Erxleben is earning respect at Texas Tech. But first he had to get used to the scenery. Or lack of.

"I can’t believe how flat it is here," he laughed. "Like the highest point in town is this 15-foot tall hill and I got loads of those in my backyard back home."

But it’s fitting that a hill is the first thing he noticed because since the first day on campus, he’s felt like he’s been alone on a hill in a lot of ways.

He did his best build a reputation as a football player first, when he entered the program’s famous "Bull Ring," and took on a few players who probably thought the freshman punter would be a light snack. The Bull Ring, for those who don’t know, is a ring formed by the players and coaches which surrounds a one-on-one challenge. It’s two players taking on each other in a battle of strength and wills. It’s one of head coach Mike Leach’s favorite parts of practice.

Baylor needs a quick start this season to go bowling.

Of the 92 bowl teams in the 13-season history of the Big 12, only 10 of them had two nonconference regular-season losses. Only three teams with two nonconference losses have qualified for bowl games among the 46 teams making bowl trips since 2003.

Here's another nugget that might act as an incentive to Art Briles or anybody else in the conference. Of the 43 Big 12 teams that have started the season with a 4-0 record -- occasionally with a conference game thrown in -- all made bowl trips that season.

So that should bode well for the Bears if they are able to run the table in an opening start with nonconference games at Wake Forest and home games against Connecticut, Northwestern State and Kent State.

 

 

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The spread offense can trace its roots to depression-era Texas high school football.

The vast fields that span the width and breadth of Texas produce a number of hearty crops, such as cotton, corn and soybeans.

And now quarterbacks, thanks greatly to the growth of high school spread offenses across the state since the early 1990s.

Chad Morris currently runs one of the best at Lake Travis (Austin). Last year's senior quarterback, Garrett Gilbert, was the national player of the year and broke his own state record by throwing for 4,854 yards for a state career-record 12,537.

Morris is no farmer, but he appears to make an apt analogy between the spread offense and a crop that thrives thanks to proper planning and care.

"You've got to have a program set in place that develops quarterbacks from the sixth grade up," said Morris, who arrived at Lake Travis a year ago after running a successful spread at Class 4A Stephenville. "It's not a one-year offense because you've got a certain kid."