ODDS AND ENDS | If you haven't read SB Nation's Spencer Hall's eulogy on the college football season, you should. It's really good.
Pretty cool story from SI.com's Thomas Lake, who tackles the legend that Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team. This is a long read, but it's very much worth it.
TRACK AND FIELD | Congrats to the ladies indoor track and field team and coach Wes Kittley for being named the #8 the preseason poll. If the question of what programs are doing it "right" at Texas Tech, this is one of them.
TEXAS TECH BASEBALL | Pretty cool, OF Barrett Barnes is ranked as the #19 player in the country by College Baseball Daily. This is a big year for the baseball program, I think a lot of us have high hopes for the team.
LADY RAIDER BASKETBALL |
TEXAS TECH VS. OKLAHOMA | January 11, 2012 @ 7:00 pm | Norman, OK
The official site has a preview as the #10 Lady Raiders travel to Norma to take on the Sooners. LAJ's David Just writes that they do not want all the games to be close and would love a blowout win, but head coach Kristy Curry knows that this isn't easy in the Big 12:
"It’s hard to do that in this league," Curry said. "You don’t see very many 20-point wins. It’s a grind-it-out kind of league where each and every night is going to be difficult. The parity in this league is too good."
And F Jordan Barncastle says that the close wins says something about this team:
"We don’t fold," she said. "I think that we care much more than previous teams that I’ve been a part of. It shows on the floor. When we get down by 10 points in the second half, instead of making that margin 15 to 20 and end up losing by 25, we end up winning by 10. That says a lot about how competitive we are."
RED RAIDER BASKETBALL |
KANSAS VS. TEXAS TECH | January 11, 2012 @ 8:00 pm | Lubbock, TX
Rock Chalk Talk has a good preview of tonight's game and Big 12 Hoops ranks the Big 12, with Texas Tech still bringing up the rear. LAJ's Nick Kosmider writes about the close relationship between Texas Tech head coach Billy Gillispie and Kansas head coach Bill Self and Self has this to say about Gillispie:
"It’s great to have Billy back coaching in the league," Self said this week. "I don’t like playing friends, but certainly I think it’s great that he’s back, and I think he’ll definitely bring attention and quality to our league, without doubt. I’m real happy for him."
And Gillispie on Self:
"He’s like a brother to me," Gillispie said of Self. "I love Coach. I love he and his family and everything he stands for. If it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t have ever had any opportunities at all. I’ll be forever grateful to him."
I've told this many times before, but I was in law school at Tulsa when Self was the head coach and Gillispie was an assistant and the run they took Tulsa on while Self was the coach there was pretty amazing. We all knew that Self was a special coach and he wasn't going to be long for Tulsa.
The official site has a profile of PG Javarez Willis:
But as much as coach Gillispie has inspired him to be the best player he can be, he has also inspired him to do something else.
"I want to graduate. Honestly, coach has changed me," said Willis. "I still slip up, but coach has showed me how to be so positive mentally when it comes to my education and my basketball. The way we practice, it makes me feel like I can defeat anything. If you can practice at the level coach wants you to, then you can defeat anything. It is all mental. It carries over to life. People say that effort in the classroom carries over to the court, but in some instances, I feel like the effort we give on the court has carried over into the classroom.
"It makes such a difference when you have someone that believes in you - someone who constantly cares. Not every conversation has been good. When I mess up, I deserve what I get, because in the end I know that he believes in me."
TEXAS TECH FOOTBALL | I know that it seems like forever, perhaps in coaching-time, but Texas Tech has made it official in naming Art Kaufman as the defensive coordinator for Texas Tech. The official site has your release and this is the quote from head coach Tommy Tuberville:
"I looked at a lot of candidates for this job but when it came down to it, I turned to a guy that I knew could get the job done," said Texas Tech Head Coach Tommy Tuberville. "Art is one of the best defensive coaches in the business and that is obvious when you take a look at the product he has put out on the field over the years. He has experience in the SEC, ACC and Conference USA and I know he will soon make his mark here in the Big 12. We are excited to have him on our staff and can't wait to get to spring practice."
This is something that I've been thinking about, and when Glasgow was terminated/resigned, I thought that new secondary coach John Lovett, would be a great candidate as a defensive coordinator because Lovett actually has more experience as a defensive coordinator, and maybe a better resume, than Kaufman. Tuberville commented after the official parting of ways with Texas Tech and said that when he made his assistant coach hires, Tuberville wanted to keep Glasgow as the defensive coordinator and I questioned at the time how accurate that statement actually was. Now, I think that Tuberville was telling the truth in that I do think that Tuberville wanted to hire his guys (Price and Lovett) to help the defense and try to surround Glasgow with some folks with experience. Glasgow then parts ways with Texas Tech and then Tuberville ends up hiring Kaufman, who again, maybe doesn't have the resume that Lovett has.
Just something to think about. Either way, Tuberville has done a 180 on coaches that have experience vs. coaches that can recruit. Kaufman has been coaching for 28 years, Lovett has 20 years of college coaching experience and defensive line coach Terry Price has 17 college coaching experience. That's 65 combined years. Compare to 14 years for Glasgow, 12 for Sam McElroy, and 1 for Otis Mounds. That's 27 combined years. And I also think that Tuberville realizes that he can just ask Prunty to essentially be a full-time recruiter. Heck, right now, Prunty has 9 guys that he's recruited that have either committed or signed, which is close to half of the class.