Updated 9/30: Texas A&M wide receiver Jeff Fuller out 4-6 weeks with broken leg. More in Comments.
As with every week so far this college football season, some highlights and lowlights from week four. Unfortunately, most of the news out of the Big 12 Conference this week isn’t good. Let’s look in to what’s going on.
Baylor QB Robert Griffin Injured, Out For The Season
Very early in the game against Northwestern State, star quarterback and leader of the Baylor Bears football team, Robert Griffin, injured his knee. While he was taken to the sideline and briefly sat out, Griffin returned to the game in the first half with his knee heavily wrapped to throw for 226 yards and three TDs. At halftime, another examination of his knee revealed a slight tear of his ACL, and he will be out for the remainder of the season. With the lifeblood of the Bears offense out, what looked to be optimism in Waco has suddenly turned in to despair. Filling the QB void will be senior Blake Syzmanski, who looked decent in the second half, was 3-for-5 for 58 yards and one TD. The Bears won the game handily, 68-13, to go to 2-1 on the season, and they take on Kent State on Saturday.
Texas Tech Suspensions…and Twitter
Not only has head coach Mike Leach put a ban on his players using Twitter due to a player’s Tweet that he shouldn’t have to be at a team meeting when the coach was running late, but starting offensive lineman Brandon Carter has been suspended indefinitely for breaking team rules. So far, no additional details have come out on his suspension, but we suspect he might have used too much face paint during last week’s game. OK, not really, but that guy is scary for many reasons. The lack of Twitter content coming from Lubbock is a huge setback for the growing Eyes Of…Twitter resource on this blog for sure. Can you imagine how awesome it would be to have Leach Tweeting? It’d be journalistic gold.
‘Horns Set Big 12 Conference “Player of the Week” Record
After another spectacular defensive performance on Saturday, the ‘Horns were rewarded with another surprise early this week. Safety Earl Thomas was tabbed the Big 12 Conference’s Defensive Player of the Week after tallying two INTs against UTEP. It’s the third week in a row that a Texas defender has been named the conference’s player of the week – a conference first, no matter the category – and Thomas follows Lamarr Houston (Wyoming game) and Rodderick Muckelroy (Texas Tech). There are 12 players on defense, and more than 12 weeks in a good football season…hmmm. Who’s stepping up against Colorado?
New York Yankees…Bowl Game?
Yep, you read that right. The New York Yankees have announced that, beginning in the 2010 bowl season, the new Yankees stadium will host a college football bowl game. Seriously, who wouldn’t want to play a bowl game in New York City in December when its cold, rainy and possibly snowing? What will they call it? The Steinbrenner Bowl? The Salary Cap Bowl? The Raise Money To Get Another Yankee Hall of Famer Bowl? Rumor has it that the bowl will be tied to the Big East and Big 12 Conferences, so expect to see a middle-of-the-road Big 12 team (probably the #7 conference team) taking on a Big East wannabe (#4 conference team) – can you feel the excitement in the air? If a Big 12 team isn’t eligible, then the Yankees would defer to Notre Dame. Does that mean NBC will broadcast it? In addition, the Yankees organization has signed up Army to play four regular season games at the stadium over the next five years, including tilts against Notre Dame and Rutgers.
Texas Longhorns Denied NCAA Reinstatement
While defensive back Deon Beasley was recently reinstated by the NCAA for academic ineligibility in advance of the Texas Tech game, his fellow ‘Horns were not so lucky. Safety Christian Scott and wide receiver Brandon Collins were denied their appeals to the NCAA on Monday, and will not play for the Longhorns this season. They will still be allowed to practice with the team, and both have two years of eligibility remaining – Scott is a redshirt sophomore, and Collins is a junior. Luckily for the ‘Horns, the offense has begun to click with quarterback Colt McCoy getting comfortable with wide outs John Chiles and Dan Buckner, and the defense has looked extremely solid despite the lack of Scott, although fans might see less nickel packages against the Big 12’s potent passing attack from defensive coordinator Will Muschamp. Barring any injuries this season at those critical positions, head coach Mack Brown’s squad should be able to get by just fine without those players.
Texas, no…Baylor, no…an SEC school?
Standout Midway (Waco, TX) High School safety Ahmad Dixon, who initially verbally committed to play for the Texas Longhorns in February 2009, and later switched his commitment to the Baylor Bears in May 2009, is now apparently taking visits to some SEC schools, ESPN reports. Dixon is the #15 player on the ESPNU top 150 list. To be a fly on the wall when Dixon is trying to pick out what to wear to school each day – it’s amazing he ever makes it to class.