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The Big Roundup - June 28, 2010

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Deloss Dodds and his little toady Mack Brown have ruined the Big 12 neighborhood!

Texas is stealing the Cornhuskers' lunch money.

The Longhorns helped chase two members out of the Big 12, bullied five others into giving them their lunch money and then passed themselves off as saving a beloved damsel in distress.

Never mind, I guess, that while "rescuing’’ the Big 12 you flirted with the Pac-10 and the Big Ten.

Now, the "Don’t Mess With Texas’’ folks wield more power than ever.

Maybe we aren't the big, bad bully everyone seems to think we are.

And then there were ties that bound, Plonsky suggested. Texas athletics director DeLoss Dodds used to be AD at Kansas State. Plonsky began her career at Iowa State.

Beyond athletics, Deaton speaks glowingly of friendships and collaborations he's had with people at other Big 12 schools going back nearly 40 years.

If those weren't driving forces in the resolution, they were part of a shared history that mattered and included tightly tethered relationships between Kansas and Kansas State, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, Texas and Oklahoma, and others.

The league, Plonsky said, wouldn't have held together without relationships.

"If after this people don't think collegiality still exists in college athletics,'' she said, "then they're just in denial.''

I've been gone and I have to come back to this thought. Texas and OU are joined at the hip.

For separation from Texas — the school and the state — would have been madness.

Texas the state is pivotal to OU's academic mission. OU gleans thousands of students from Texas high schools; many of those Texans return to their homeland as distinguished alumni, who would not be thrilled by routine OU-Mississippi or OU-Arizona State games.

This is not an Oklahoma-Nebraska rivalry that interacted only on a November football field. OU and Texas alums share the same cities and same office buildings, be it Oklahoma City or Tulsa or Houston or San Antone or the battleground of Dallas.

Texas the school is pivotal to OU's athletic hopes. And vice versa. Since the bitter rivals became conference cousins again almost 15 years ago, their athletic fortunes have soared. Which means mostly their gridiron glory.

Have we angered the college football gods? The NCAA wants to prohibit making scholarships offers to recruits before July 1 in the summer between their junior and senior years in high school.

Boomer and Sooner thinks this should be called the Mack Brown Rule.

If this rule passes, it would be very intriguing to see what effect it has on UT’s recruiting tactics. Stoops has always been more comfortable with allowing more time to watch players develop. Brown has shown no such inclination. In fact, UT tries to have their recruiting wrapped up by this time of year.

On a side note, who in the UT admin dropped a Baby Ruth in the NCAA’s swimming pool? Seriously, between the ludicrous Muschamp Rule last year (restricting the recruiting ability of "head coaches in waiting") and this rule, they must have seriously pissed off the girls in Indianapolis.

It is audit time at the Forty Acres.

The University of Texas System, which has the fifth-highest endowment among U.S. colleges, sold $516.2 million in Build America Bonds as its flagship campus is audited by the Internal Revenue Service.

The IRS is examining the University of Texas at Austin for executive compensation and matters related to taxable income, preliminary offering documents show. Mack Brown, head football coach, the highest-paid state employee at $5.1 million per year, earns almost seven times more than Francisco Cigarroa, who’s paid $750,000 as chancellor of the University of Texas System. By contrast, Texas Governor Rick Perry receives $150,000 a year.

The weight room is the best. Literally.



"It was an unusual experience," said Tech Chancellor Kent Hance. "It
just occupied every minute, for about three weeks, of your waking
hours. No matter who you talk to - at the airport, on a plane - no
matter what you did, there were people who that's all they wanted to
talk about. It was obvious it was a big deal."

Unfortunately, we might see the Cornhuskers again even though they will be in the Big Ten.

But what about a rematch, say, in Tempe, Ariz.? The Insight Bowl matches teams from the Big 12 and Big Ten, so who’s to say Missouri and Nebraska can’t eventually rekindle their rivalry at Sun Devil Stadium?

Or how about some day reviving Oklahoma-Nebraska in the desert?

"We have thought about that," said Insight Bowl CEO John Junker, "and that’s potentially exciting."

Nebraska has really mucked up the Big Ten scheduling.

An Illinois athletic department spokesman said the Big Ten has asked schools to stop scheduling football games beyond 2012. The league has released its eight-game conference schedule through that year. The Big 12 is scheduled through 2015 with its current lineup.

But Minnesota and others already have done their work beyond that time frame. Iowa State has four nonconference games scheduled each season through 2017, and Purdue has four through 2015. Several other Big 12 schools have four in place for 2011.

The Cornhuskers will fit right in.

For instance, Minnesota ranked second among Big Ten schools with an average finish similar to Nebraska’s average finish of 4.6 across all Big 12 sports in the last year. The Huskers ranked behind only Texas A&M and Texas.

The Big Ten appears to be more balanced than Nebraska’s current home. The range between Minnesota’s average finish of 4.65 and the Big Ten’s worst mark of 6.42 (Michigan State) is much tighter than in the Big 12.

That's just too bad. Nebraska might want to rethink their recruiting strategy.

With the move to the Big Ten, things likely are going to change in several ways for Nebraska football, not the least of which will be recruiting. But Nebraska coach Bo Pelini, a former Ohio State player and graduate, preferred not to dwell on that at the moment.

"When the season is over, you have to adjust your sights, you've got to start thinking about how it's going to impact recruiting and all those types of things," Pelini said. "But that's for another time. If you start thinking ahead too much, you lose focus on the task at hand, and that's this coming fall."

It is a new era in the Big 12.

It’s a new offensive era in the Big 12 Conference as a handful of decorated stars have departed, including four quarterbacks who spent their careers collecting school records: Texas’ Colt McCoy, Oklahoma’s Sam Bradford, Kansas’ Todd Reesing and Oklahoma State’s Zac Robinson.

Meanwhile, the Big 12 is loaded with established running backs as 10 of the league’s 12 leading rushers from last season are back. That’s why the first edition of the Big 12 Summer Countdown is brimming with runners. With an assist from the website, here are the Big 12’s best offensive skill players for 2010, the playmakers who are the conference’s best with the ball in their hands.

The Commish isn't talking expansion.

The Big 12's 10 athletic directors met with commissioner Dan Beebe for the second consecutive day today In Irving. The topics discussed did include "future opportunities," a league statement read, including television and branding, along with scheduling, championships and other governance issues involved in going forward as a 10-team league.

The Buffs will be making good money out West.

With the addition of CU and Utah, Navigate projects the Pac-10's next TV deal should be worth about $14.5 million per member school. That's nearly three times the Pac-10's current deal and more than $5 million more than CU received last year from the Big 12.

Two Sooners have been named to the 2010 Bronko Nagurski Award watch list and three have been named to the Outland Trophy watch list.

The Aggies are marketing. Before you make any snide comment, just remember that trying to sell Colleyville football can't be easy.

Corn Nation is posting recipes again and this time it is smoked buffalo. (Insert any Colorado football jokes here.)



Dick Vitale sums up the whole realignment mess.

"The whole thing has gotten out of whack," said ESPN’s Dick Vitale, the voice of college basketball. "It’s all about one thing: dollars, dollars, dollars, football, football, football, greed, greed, greed."

The NCAA noticed a lot of extra personnel at D-1 programs and decided to do something about it.

The Division I Recruiting and Athletics Personnel Issues Cab­inet proposed Tuesday capping support personnel at four for I-A football teams, two for I-AA foot­ball teams and one each for men's and women's basketball teams. Alabama appears to have seven football support staff mem­bers who would be counted to­ward the rule if it passed, and Au­burn appears to have four in football.

The issue mainly boils down to competitive equity as the finan­cial gap between the haves and have-nots grows. Some universi­ties can sustain extra staff more than others. Those that can't must assign extra responsibilities to assistant coaches to keep up.

Darrell Scott is transferring to South Florida.

Shocking. The Delaware school, home to Lane Kiffin's 13-year-old recruit, is under investigation.

ESPN is taking over sports. ESPN took over all marketing and advertising of the Rose Bowl so Citi is out.

Florida forgot to build statues to two of their biggest contributors to the Gator football program.

Need a fix?

There are a few ways to feed your high school sports needs between now and August 2, the day football and volleyball practice begins for most teams.

--July 8-10: 7-on-7 football. The state tournament, held at Texas A&M's Penberthy Fields, is a great collection of some of high school's most talented players, especially quarterbacks. It's an opportunity to see them out of uniform, in shorts and T-shirts. And with coaches not allowed to direct teams, and it's also a chance to get a feel for leadership skills among QBs.



And finally...

Please stop by and lend your support to one of the great guys over at Barking Carnival. Our thoughts go out the BC family.


Thanks to Caradoc for the suggestion. I'll try to remember to add my email in to every post.