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Red Raider Gridiron :: Batch Speaks Up


Very Abbreviated:  This is going to be a very abbreviated edition of a RRG.  I have an offensive review of the spring game scheduled to post later this morning. 

Batch Interview:  FSSW Steve Hunt interviewed RB Baron Batch and before we read too much in to Batch's comments, let's all keep in mind that I think he's just answering questions honestly and I also don't think that any of his comments should be construed as controversial.  With that disclaimer out of the way, here's a few of his comments.

What’s the biggest difference you’ve noticed with Coach Tuberville thus far?

Batch: I think what Tuberville brings he brings a lot of discipline with everything-classes and whatever you do. There are no hats or earrings in the building.  He brings that respect factor and he also great with the players. He’s always around and you can always talk to him. He’s just an awesome guy.

So there’s no more pirate talk like there was with Coach Leach?

Batch: No, not at all.

I don't think it's a stretch to think that Batch may be a fan of the coaching change and to be honest, I don't think there's anything wrong with that.  There's 100 different personalities on that team, not every player is going to like every coach and I'd bet that there's more than a handful of players that wish Leach was still the coach.  In any event, I appreciate the fact that Batch didn't address the differences between the two coaches.  He's learning.

Batch on the spring practices:

Talk about how spring drills have gone for you.

Batch: It was a lot of learning. For me, the terminology was different but the plays were about the same. The terminology was the hardest thing for me to pick up on from playing the previous four years with the old coaches and the old terminology, which is something I really had to do a good job of forgetting that stuff and starting new. I felt kind of like a freshman out there sometimes but as it progressed, I feel like I picked up on it really well and ended pretty strong.

Someone remind me, I thought that all of the terminology was going to remain essentially the same.  I could have sworn that OC Brown said that, but maybe I'm remembering the wrong quote.  Either way, Batch does confirm that the offense is essentially the same.

You’re part of a talented Red Raider senior class. Discuss.

Batch: It’s funny, I was just talking to Bront Bird and (Steven) Sheffield about that a few minutes ago. We have an awesome senior class and it’s true talent-wise. The team chemistry this class has is something that hasn’t been around here since I’ve been here. The biggest difference is you have the senior guys that are really trying to teach the younger guys how to do it right now. When I first got here, you had the senior guys that wouldn’t talk to the younger guys because they didn’t want to have their spots taken. Now that we’re seniors, we’re really trying to coach those younger guys up. It’s not about us. It’s about the program and moving the program forward. I think that’s the biggest difference. The younger guys see that and it’s just a big family. I’m going to miss it. It’s crazy that I’m a senior now but it’s going to be a fun year.

Personally, it's hard for me not to root for Batch, but then again, I have a hard time not rooting for good people and I think that Batch is a good person.  I'm hoping that this type of leadership that Batch, Sheffield and Bird exhibit continues.  We can talk a lot about coaching, but having other players support each other and pick each other up is a huge benefit for this team.

Batch comments on non-conference schedules, his relationship with his fellow running backs.  Go read the whole thing.

Tuberville to Join Middle East Tour:  I haven't seen this reported anywhere else, but per OregonLive's John Hunt, head coach Tommy Tuberville is set to leave May 21st for the Middle East in an eight-country nine-day tour traveling from Iraq and Afghanistan.  Tuberville will be with Oregon's Chip Kelly, Illinois' Ron Zook, Army's Rich Ellerson and Harvard's Tim Murphy.  Tuberville has done this before (at least in 2008) and for those Red Raiders supporting our country overseas if you get any interaction with Tubs or any photos, DTN would love to hear from you.

Henley to Atlanta:  The Galveston Daily News' Joshua Buckley writes about Rajon Henley and the start to his NFL career, where he was initially invited to go to the mini-camp with the Cincinnati Bengals, but ended up signing a contract with the Atlanta Falcons:

"I was all set to go to Cincinnati," Henley said. "But when Atlanta offered me a contract, I had to take what was best for me. Having a contract signed is better than going to Cincinnati for a try out and then coming home.

"The Falcons seemed to want me more than the Bengals did."

Henley listed his height and weight at 6'3"/244 and I forgot how much weight he lost last year, although Henley is confident that he can take on stronger players:

"I want to prove that I am strong for my size," Henley said. "I can hold my own against 300-pound guys if I need to. Sometimes, I don’t even know how I do it. I guess it is just my will to win."