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Double-T Nation Daily Diatribe // 07.27.09

Odds and Ends

  I'm changing the format a bit today, as an experiment, because as football season gets closer, the more information I'm going to gather each morning and just last week I was somewhat running out of the house a tad bit late for work.  And it's only going to get worse as the Big 12 Media Days start today with Nebraska, Oklahoma St., Texas A&M and Iowa State (the Captain and OL Brandon Carter, CB Jamar Wall and DT Colby Whitlock are set for Wednesday), and I've got a feeling that we're going to have a ton of news stories this week. 

Long story short, same content, different look.

  Da Wiz emailed me last night about the football poster contest of 2009 and the Texas Tech poster is currently losing to Air Force by a wide margin.  Make it happen guys and gals.

  Give a warm welcome to Double -T 104.3 (website was not live as of posting this morning), where you'll be able to find Chris Level and Robert Giovannetti as well as some new Texas Tech related programming.  Not quite ready for live streaming over the internets, but I understand this process is a bit tricky, but it's hopefully on it's way.

  New poll!  Who finishes first in the Big 12 South.  We'll count this down as we lead up to the season.

Texas Tech Football

  The Tulsa World's John E. Hoover (hat-tip djollie111) asks 12 questions about the Big 12:

5. Will Texas Tech's (insert QB's name here) lead all of creation in passing yards?

One wouldn't think so. Not after Graham Harrell owned the position for three years. But Mike Leach's offense has produced one-year wonders like B.J. Symons (5,833 yards), Sonny Cumbie (4,742) and Cody Hodges (4,238). Harrell in his debut season threw for 4,555. Even without WR Michael Crabtree, sophomore Taylor Potts will put up huge numbers.

Personally, I don't know that Taylor Potts will lead all of creation, but I don't know that I want him to do so either.  There's a lot of talent at the running back position.

  The Kansas City Star's Blair Kerkhoff writes that the story in the Big 12, the quarterbacks are the story.  I think you could safely argue that the quarterbacks continue to be the story as I think they were the story last year as well.  The article is a good primer for today, asking lots of questions about what to expect in the Big 12 this year.

  DMN's Chuck Carlton has a couple of articles over the weekend, the first an interview with Big 12 Commissioner, Dan Beebe, and the second a preview of this week's Big 12 Media Days.  Nothing ground-breaking in the Beebe article, but I wanted to blockquote this bit about the tiebreaker:

The Big 12's three-way football tiebreaker remained unchanged for this season. Are you comfortable with the process should history repeat?

At this point, I am. The membership has looked at it. The coaches have looked at it. The athletics directors have looked at it. There may be some more consideration about variances and some of our institutions perhaps may propose that. ... It's not perfect, just like the system isn't perfect. The BCS isn't perfect. The NFL playoffs aren't perfect. Our tiebreaker is as good as we can predict it will turn out. The athletics directors' last vote was not to change it but to continue to look at possible recommendations. I think there will be some coming forward.

And then there was this question about the financial disparity between certain schools, and whether that bothered Beebe:

Figures from 2007-08 reveal some Big 12 athletic departments and football programs, led by Texas, have been very successful financially. Other conference members, less so. Is that disparity a concern?

From the commissioner's chair it is. You want your strongest teams to be able to compete nationally against other comparable institutions, but you also want all the membership to be strong. We need for institutions to be able to play for national championships, not just in football, but all sports.

I'm not holding my breath that anything will change about the disparity, and I don't know that anyone has the right to make any changes, you know, capitalism and all, but the "have's" and the "have not's" are becoming more and more apparent.

In Carlton's second article, he laments that it's a shame, and probably done on purpose by the Big 12, that the Captain and TAMU head coach Mike Sherman won't be in the same room together:

Just about any year, Texas Tech coach Mike Leach is a viral video waiting to happen.

This July, Leach has more to talk about than normal.

He's coming off a breakthrough 11-2 season. He must replace quarterback Graham Harrell and receiver Michael Crabtree. He almost became the former coach at Tech before agreeing to a five-year, $12.7 million contract.

It's a shame that he and Texas A&M counterpart Mike Sherman aren't booked on the same day to debate the NFL prospects of Stephen McGee.

I readily admit that Leach make my job incredibly easy.  Thanks, Mike.

  Continuing the Fox34 countdown of the most important Red Raiders, up next is OL Chris Olson at #6:

  Nothing would make me happier than to see WR Michael Crabtree just play football and not worry about a bunch of other stuff, but per The Press Democrat's Matt Maiocco, Mr. Crabtree isn't even close to signing with the San Francisco 49ers, and I completely disagree with Mr. Crabtree's agent (and Crabtree himself) line of thinking:

Rookie contracts are generally determined by where a player is selected in the draft. Crabtree, the two-time Biletnikoff Award winner as college football’s best wide receiver, was the No. 10 overall pick.

However, Parker believes Crabtree deserves a greater contract because he should have been chosen sooner, multiple NFL sources said.

I'm all for a guy getting paid, but thinking that you deserve more money because you believe you should have been chosen sooner seems incredibly silly.  You got picked where you did, you are what you are.

Texas Tech Basketball

  Former Red Raider Charlie Burgess is making it happen in Belize as he's still in the process of trying out for the Belize National Team, but also helping with a basketball camp for the youth of Belize and sponsored by UNICEF.  Good for Burgess:

And while Dakin is the tallest, the 6’ 2" Texas Tech alum Charlie Burgess was by far the most popular.

Charlie Burgess, National Team Candidate
"We’re practicing two times a day getting familiar with the players, getting used to the court, getting used to the new coaching style that we playing here because here it is an up and down pace so it is just something different you have to adjust to but so far my stay here has been good. All the people treating me good, the food is great, I can’t complain too much."

Keith Swift,
"Is it what you expected?"

Charlie Burgess,
"For the most part. From what I remembered as a child being here, I remember always coming here and having fun and I am having fun as an adult being here."