RRG: I just thought I'd mix things up this morning.
Big 12 Media Days: Big 12 Sports has the main page for the Big 12 Media Days, which is scheduled for July 26th through July 28th. Texas Tech is scheduled for the 27th, along with Missouri, Oklahoma St. and Kansas St. The representatives from Texas Tech are . . .
QB Taylor Potts
QB Steven Sheffield
DT Colby Whitlock
Pretty interesting group, although I'm a bit surprised that RB Baron Batch or maybe LB Brian Duncan didn't get the call over Potts and Sheffield. Either way, this is a good group of guys and that's what's important to me. You could argue that any of the senior starters deserved to be there.
Potts Talks About Manning Passing Academy and Injury: KAMC's David Collier talked with Taylor Potts regarding his experience in winning the Air It Out Challenge at the Manning Passing Academy over the weekend, as well as his injured hand.
Ranking Big 12 RB's: NE StatePaper's Samuel McKewon ranks the Big 12 running backs and Texas Tech running backs check in tied for #5:
T5. Texas Tech
Starter: Baron Batch (884/14)
Strengths: Red Raider running backs don’t seem to last long in the NFL, but they’re perfectly suited for the role they were given in Mike Leach’s offense. Batch’s talents - he also caught 57 passes for 395 yards - may translate better to Sundays because he has decent size (5-11, 205). Good depth here, with Harrison Jeffers and Eric Stephens both getting their share of touches in 2009.
Weaknesses: Slightly new offense to learn. Tech still isn’t great between the tackles and these backs probably run too much laterally.
Competing with Rivals and Scout: Big hat-tip to Barking Carnival, but Koo's Corner's Ben Koo has a fascinating look at the history between Rivals and Scout, as well as the new recruiting network, 24/7 which was founded by former Rivals CEO, Shannon Terry. This is just a snippet from the article, but I highly recommend that you go read the whole thing to get the embattled history between these two companies and why there's going to be a new recruiting service:
Frankly with ESPN, Scout, and Rivals you think this would be a crowded space, but really this is a smart move. There is a lot chatter that Scout is going to be slimmed down substantially as many sites are losing money, ESPN's network is basically imploding thanks to 24/7 Sports, and Rivals while viable is also taking a HUGE hit.
A lot of startups like SBN, Yardbarker, FSV, Bleacher Report, along with media companies like CBS and NBC actually benefit from this as it looks like the front of the pack in Yahoo, ESPN, and to a lesser degree Fox will be losing some ground in terms of network audience size.
This opportunity only exists because 3 major media companies in Fox, Yahoo, and ESPN have failed to really find a model or a technology offering that is viable to publishers, advertisers, and most importantly visitors and subscribers. Blogs have also been eating away at these recruiting sites for quite awhile, but at the end of the day you still need full time people calling and constantly tracking the thousands of high school recruits spanning both football and basketball.
Obviously Terry and his people didn't like Yahoo's execution and plan with Rivals and decided to have another run at it. I am sure Yahoo is extremely irked that the guy that sent a huge check to buy Rivals is now jacking some of their biggest properties, but regardless whatever value proposition 24/7 is shopping, investors and publishers are eating it up.
Without anything to review its hard to say just how they'll be different from the legacy recruiting networks and just what they've promised to publishers in terms of things like equity in the new company, cash buyouts/acquistions, advertising guarantees, bonuses, etc. Potentially some site owners were offered full time employment as deal clinchers.
I'd surmise some amount of capital was spent to get these larger publishers on board in hopes it would spur smaller publishers and even just talented journalists to give 24/7 a look.
This is just fascinating to me and I apologize if I'm the only one that finds this interesting. I have no idea how Koo can claim that Rivals is viable, but taking a huge hit, but it doesn't surprise me in the least that the Scout network is struggling. I don't know if I've ever considered myself a rival of either of the Texas Tech Rivals and Scout affiliates, but I do think that they certainly consider me an outsider, and that's fine. They're pretty much embedded in the program and I'm not. Not to mention, the guys that own these affiliate websites make their living doing this, so they're naturally very protective of their brand, while I'm still doing this because it's fun. As said before, just a guy with a laptop with an opinion or two. I'm interested to see what happens from from here on out, but again, I find it interesting.
Patton Productions and Tuberville Talks - Most Important Addition:
Miscellaneous: Rock M Nation's Bill C. takes a look at the TAMU offense through BTBS . . . SN's Matt Hayes ranks the Big 12's non-conference schedules and your Red Raiders check in at #4 (this is the 4th toughest, which is surprising since I couldn't even remember the name of one of our late-season opponents) . . .