ODDS AND ENDS | Animated GIF's for January!!
CONFERENCE REALIGNMENT | Good friends at Big East Coast Bias note that West Virginia and the Big East have reached a conditional settlement:
According to Mike Casazza and Jared Hunt of the Charleston (WV) Daily Mail, the Big East and West Virginia have reached a conditional settlement that would end their competing lawsuits and send West Virginia to the Big 12 in 2012. The settlement is for a total of $20 million, with West Virginia paying $11 million and the Big 12 Conference paying the other $9 million.
The deal, however, is no longer dependent upon Boise State being able to leave the Mountain West Conference and play football in the Big East as West Virginia's replacement in 2012. According to Casazza and Hunt, the Big East will still try and possibly take Boise State in 2012, but either way will take the $20 million and use it however it sees fit. Apparently, prior to this agreement, the Big East was unwilling to settle without a replacement, but now is willing to settle and take the payout from West Virginia without necessarily having a 2012 replacement in hand.
In other conference realignment news, NewsOK's Berry Tramel answers a bunch of Big 12 expansion questions, including a lot of thoughts on BYU.
RED RAIDER SOFTBALL | The Red Raiders beat San Diego St. 5-4 yesterday. Congrats!
RED RAIDER BASKETBALL | I'm not going to get a chance to preview tomorrow's game against Oklahoma today, but I'll have something up tomorrow. The game is in Lubbock and tip-off is at 7:00 pm. LAJ's Nick Kosmider writes about all of the problem numbers for Texas Tech and David Just also has some Lady Raider stuff. The Lady Raiders take on Iowa St. on Sunday, also in Lubbock, and the game will be on ESPN2.
TEXAS TECH BASEBALL | Baseball America has come out with their Big 12 preview and is picking Texas Tech to finish 7th. CF Barrett Barnes is listed as having the best raw power in the Big 12 and Jamodrick McGruder is the best base runner. Like it does every year, this team is going to make the NCAA Tournament as long as the pitching comes through.
Yesterday I didn't realize that Mike Graham's DMN story about DH Scott LeJeune and his anxiety disorder that kept him out all of last year was free on RRS.com and there's a lot more there at RRS.com, so go check it out. Also, LAJ's George Watson (beware video auto play) has a bit on yesterday's ribbon cutting ceremony at the newly renovated Rip Griffin Park. Head coach Dan Spencer seems incredibly happy:
"You see it going up and you don’t know if they’re every going to get to a point of it being built," Tech head coach Dan Spencer said. "But it’s built and we’re a week away from getting to play in it and it’s very emotional. The things it’s done for this year’s club and for future clubs is huge, there’s no other way to describe it. It’s big, and we’re extremely grateful and excited."
TEXAS TECH FOOTBALL | I don't really know if it's news that the football schedule will come out today, but when AD Kirby Hocutt spoke at yesterday's ribbon cutting ceremony, again, per LAJ's George Watson, he said that the football schedule would come out today:
"It’s time for the schedule to come out," Hocutt said Thursday, "but at the same time, even up until 7:30 (Wednesday) night we were having conversations about various adjustments within the schedule. It is going to come out (today) and I’m pleased with the end result. I think it will be one of the best home schedules we’ve possibly had in program history, or at least in quite some time. Unfortunately, given the circumstances we’ve faced, it’s a lot later than anyone wanted. But it will come out (today) and I think we’ll be pleased with the end results."
In searching through Twitter this morning, I ran across some things about some current students, most likely as walk-ons, making the football team. The ones I ran across were Miakel Williams who is from El Paso, apparently initially went to Air Force, played RB/DB/ST and I guess now is at Texas Tech (YouTube), and Xavier Henry who is from Snyder and played receiver (YouTube).
"We want to create kind of a hybrid position," Tech offensive coordinator Neal Brown said. "How Oregon used De’Anthony Thomas this year, we think Javares and Bradley, maybe SaDale, could kind of be an inside receiver, slash running back."
OC Brown also talked about RB Kenny Williams and RB Ronnie Daniels:
"I really think Kenny Williams will be one of our most improved players in the spring," Brown said. "I thought he showed some good signs in the Missouri and Baylor games. Ronnie has been great in our winter workouts so far. Coming off the suspension, he came back in great shape. He’s a guy that can really help us at that spot."
And OC Brown also had some telling things about RB Ben McRoy:
"We’d like to use his speed (at running back)," Brown said, "but he’s got to improve. He’s got to eliminate mental mistakes and get his run reads and be more disciplined overall."
Last, but not least, OC Brown said that RB Eric Stephens and RB DeAndre Washington could redshirt next year, if necessary. I'm okay with that.