ODDS AND ENDS | I hope everyone had a great and safe holiday and am glad to be back. Yeterday's post sparked a lot of good discussion and we'll get to some additional thoughts below. I've finished the recruiting profiles on every commit for football and men's basketball and I think the order is WR Javon Bell today, LB Chris Payne tomorrow, OL Rashad Fortenberry on Friday, and then FS Austin Stewart and CB Bruce Jones next week. I've also done recruiting profiles on the two additional commits for the men's team.
LADY RAIDER BASKETBALL | Speaking of recruits and commits, LAJ's David Just has the latest on Coach Kristy Curry's commitment of Jamaika Hughes from Kennedale for the 2013 recruiting class. Jamaika talks about her best asset:
"My best asset is defense," she said. "That’s my favorite thing and that’s what I’m really good at. I’ve gotten better at both ball handling and shooting, but those are still things I need to work on."
Pretty amazing to be discussing commits for the 2013 class for Coach Curry, but when you win, then the players start coming to you. Congrats to Jamaika!
One quick aside, the Lady Raiders don't play until Thursday night in California in a tournament and the first game is against Cal State Bakersfield, which just happens to be the men's opponent tonight.
RED RAIDER BASKETBALL | The men's team gets back to action against the Roadrunners of Cal State Bakersfield. The DTN preview goes up later this morning and you can read the official site for television details or if you want to go to the game ,I think tickets are only $1.
I missed this prior to the holidays, per LAJ's Tommy Magelssen, Coach Billy Gillispie helped hand out 500 turkeys after getting back from Tulsa, so I think this would have been the morning of December 23rd. There was a quote in there that made me chuckle, obviously Gillispie is just showing up and handing these things out, but he owns it:
Gillispie said he wanted to do something nice for the community, and United partnered with the coach to help deliver the turkeys.
"I said, ‘Y’all set it up, and I’ll write the check,’ and I’m very, very happy to do it," he said.
The turkeys were listed at 69 cents per pound, with most of them averaging a little more than 12 pounds. Gillispie paid for 100 percent of the costs, meaning he spent close to $5,000.
I also missed this really well-researched story from LAJ's Nick Kosmider on PG Luke Adams and what he deals with due to his hearing disability (I hope I'm using correct terminology). This isn't a fluff piece, but it takes you back and Kosmider talks to Adams' parents about how much Luke has overcome so I'm not going to block quote anything, but just tell you to read it.
Finally, Kosmider writes about how the men hope to make quick strides in getting ready for Big 12 play, which starts January 4, 2012.
TEXAS TECH FOOTBALL | I don't want this to get burried, so I'll put it here, but recent Texas Tech graduate, QB Jacob Karam is looking at Houston, UTEP and Memphis as possible landing spots. No matter where he lands, unless he's playing Texas Tech, I wish Karam the best.
I wanted to talk a bit about yesterday's recruiting post and wanted to clarify a couple of things, although I think most of you get it.
For those that say that recruiting rankings don't mean anything, that is entirely disingenuous and I think you must know that. They do mean something and I think that's part of the problem. They are not the absolute tell-all in terms of how well a player will eventually perform, but rather an indicator of how well these experts think players will perform.
When people talk about recruiting rankings and things like that, if you have a discussion about a player or a program and all that they talk about is how well their team has recruited, then you may want to move on and end that conversation. I can say that here at DTN, I do not believe that recruiting rankings mean everything, but they mean something. I'm still trying to figure out how much that is, but it does mean something.
By taking a cumulative average of all of the experts, my hope was to give a more balanced approach as to how a player is evaluated by all of the services rather than the silly argument of Player "A" was a 2-star and a 4-star player, so fans argue on both sides of the fence as to whether or not a player missed out on that player.
If you think about the cumulative average, I like to think of it as an indicator of how well the experts think that a player will succeed based on how much they know about that player. The experts may know about Malcolm Brown and be able to determine that he might be a much better running back right now, or in the future, than DeAndre Washington. Brown clearly out-performed Washington while in high school. Brown rushed for almost 2,600 yards and had 30 touchdowns, while Washington rushed for almost 1,400 yards and 14 touchdowns.
It wasn't even close, but that doesn't mean that the book has been written about either player. Brown proved to be pretty darned good, but not spectacular and I think that most Texas Tech fans are excited about what Washington did this year in having to fill in for Eric Stephens. Brown had a cumulative average of 97% or so, while Washington was 74%. Again, this doesn't mean that Brown is guaranteed anything, but based on size, speed, production on the field and anything else that the experts consider, they were banking that Brown was the more sure bet, while Washington had about a 74% chance of success. He may exceed that, but again, the book still has to be written on both players as they completed their first years.
Again, the cumulative average should maybe be looked at the percentage of likely success of a particular player. Nothing is guaranteed.