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Red Raider Gridiron | Stephens Fired as Returner; Mackey Stays Humble


Texas St. vs. Texas Tech Webcast

I haven't given this any sort of front page consideration, but I should.  You can watch the Texas St. vs. Texas Tech game online and it's only $9.95 for an entire month.  I've done this before, with the Nevada game a couple of years ago and canceled my subscription as soon as the game was over.  You may want to keep the subscription for the month in case you want to re-watch the game (I think that you can do this, but please correct me in the comments).


LAJ's Don Williams has a notebook where he says that DE Leon Mackey is humbled by the fact that he's been named the starter and knows that it's only for one week.  LAJ's Williams also writes that RB Eric Stephens has been "fired" as the kickoff returner and those duties will go to RB Ben McRoy and IR Austin Zouzalik.  Tuberville also says that Stephens will get 20 to 25 carries a game.  Stephens also talked a bit about his fumbling problems that plagued him last year:

"I really haven’t had the problem lately," he said. "It’s not on my mind like it was last year. I’m thinking that was a big part of it. When you fumble that much, you start thinking about it too much, and it becomes a burden."

Tech coaches have taken steps to address the issue. The Red Raiders do one drill with a weight-anchored rope tied to the football providing resistance. In another, they lug a water-filled football that Stephens estimates weighs 8 to 10 pounds.

"No telling how much that thing weighs," Tuberville said.

"Coach Scott had one for a while," Stephens said, "but they’ve incorporated it into practice now, so it’s a new deal. Every day, we have a period isolated just for ball security, and it’s not just for running backs. It’s for every position."

I love it.  Get better.

Fran Speaks

DMN's Mike Graham writes that Texas St. coach Dennis Franchione says that this team will be different from any other team:

"We are going to be different from any team I've coached," Franchione said. "I read an article where they said Texas Tech will play about half of their defensive package, because they're young on defense. I'm sure they're looking into how they're going to prepare and what are they going to see.

"First games are always that way. Even though we've watched film about what they've done, first games show up and they do things you haven't seen them do before. That's how upsets happen sometimes. You're not prepared for some things and you get caught off guard."

I'm calling bullsh on this.  I think that a coach doesn't like change.  Heck, Texas St. is utilizing a 4-2-5 defense.

More stuff after the jump.

Big 12 Conference Realignment

Interesting.  CBS Sports Bryan Fisher writes that the Big 12 and various schools are claiming that their emails are super-secret and the courting emails or correspondence:

The Big 12 is essentially claiming their emails contain trade secrets and they can't be released. A call to the league office for comment about the matter was not returned. It is not known what the folks in Dallas are trying to withhold but if Texas released the Longhorn Network's contract with third parties IMG and ESPN, you do wonder what it is the Big 12 is trying to hold back.

What happens now is the schools will gather all of the emails the conference wants withheld, will then send them to the attorney general, who will rule on whether they can be released. This will take some time of course.

And that's why the Big 12 is doing this. They want to keep some prying eyes out of their realignment business. It probably won't happen but at least they'll have some time to sort a few issues out.

Miscellaneous Links

. . . the Big 12 looks at TAMU . . . meet the two-deep continues with a look at K Bradley Hicks (watch via YouTube) . . .'s Aaron Dickens with an exhaustive look at the Texas Tech roster . . . TTURed has more campus photos . . . and this is totally random, but this was my moment of zen (hat-tip unlikelywords):