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STCW: We're back with a plethora of news

Isn't plethora a great word?


And then one time, at band camp.....

It's been a while since we talked about bands.  And I really do love college marching bands.  And Texas loves theirs a whole bunch.  In fact, the Longhorn band is the centerpiece of a wholesale redesign of the game day experience at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium at Joe Jamail Field.  Whew!

Apparently the band is being moved out of the endzone - as it is with most bands - and into the heart of the fans so they can lead the students.  They are even considering moving the students to flank/surround the band.  Are you listening, Rutgers Fan Advisory Board?

And bringing the band inside....

Have you looked at the "student section" at the RAC for men's and women's games?  And I use the term "student section" very....very....loosely.  Seriously, and especially for women's games, if it wasn't for the band, would there be any students at the games?  Thank you, pep band.

Here's a list we aren't on

Nothing specifically against New Brunswick (or Piscataway) but we aren't making the list of "Nine great college basketball towns".  We could be 30-0 for both men's and women's basketball and we wouldn't make the list.  Because the list is primarily made up of towns where teams have recently won titles.  Hell, Storrs, Connecticut isn't there.  (Stick it, Geno!)

The article states:

With March Madness a month away, here are nine towns scattered across the nation where college basketball is the central conversation piece and every fan dreams of a championship. (emphasis added)

That, my friends, is not....never has been....likely never will be, New Brunswick.  It includes Bloomington, Chapel Hill, and Durham.  All expected.  As were Lawrence, KS and Lexington, KY.  But what surprised me were Philadelphia and...wait for it....Dayton.  Philly has the Big 5, and multipe teams that are regularly competitive.  Okay, I'll buy it.  But Dayton?  Except, as the story points out, the Flyers of the A10:

"have ranked top 35 in the nation in attendance every year, drawing sold-out crowds of 13,455 to the building on a regular basis.

Go Flyers!

My varsity letter

Once upon a time, there was a sport at Rutgers called Lightweight Football.  I played it for two seasons and earned my Varsity R.  At 5'6" and 154 pounds, I played right tackle on offense and on the defensive line.  I even recovered a fumble against Princeton.  Alas, somewhere in the early nineties, the sport was dropped at Rutgers.  But not elewhere.

Today it's called Sprint Football.  As a college football official, I've worked any number of their games, including Army-Navy at Annapolis; it was one of the best games I was ever involved with in my career.

And the sport is growing, including in New Jersey where Caldwell College is adding Sprint Football as its 16th sport.  And I am very happy for the sport and for the young men will have the opportunity to play it.

We got ours....the rest of you are on your own

The general consensus is that college conference realignment is not over.  The Big XII, with its ten teams, seems to be actively looking, although the stories seem to change practically day to day.  Cincinnati has been mentioned as a Big XII target, as has BYU.  Recently, former-BYU-now-Virginia head coach Bronco Mendenhall said that BYU could not survive as an independent.

The most interesting name - if not an actual possibility - mentioned for the Big XII has been UConn.

There's no doubt the the Huskies feel they were left to drown (they were) when BC, Pitt, Syracuse, and Miami (and eventually Louisville) bolted for the ACC.  And then when Rutgers got the invitation to the Big Ten, the shock waves emanating from Storrs from everyone throwing up was heard across the land (except in New Jersey where we were crying with joy and then laughing at them at the same time).

The rumor mill continues, although as was seen this year, the AAC wasn't all that bad.  And some schools are pretty content to stay right where they are.  Would that include UConn?

Marketing and rights fees....who gets the best deal?

It may depend on who is doing your marketing.  Rutgers uses IMG College, a company that represents a slew of big time programs including Auburn, Clemson, UCLA, Miami, Notre Dame, and Nebraska.   But a nearby school just dropped IMG to go in a very different direction: Villanova is signing with Fox Sports.  Fox Sports College Properties will be handling the marketing and branding for the Wildcats.  Fox has a deep financial connection with the Big East and this seems to be another step in holding onto that property for Fox.

Nothing says college football like Rolling Stone Magazine

Everyone who thinks Jim Harbaugh is a great coach, raise your hand.  One, two, three....whoa, that's a lot.  Everyone who thinks Harbaugh is a wack job and is eventually going to burn out at UM, raise your hand.  No, you can only raise one hand.

Apparently Rolling Stone ran a piece saying pretty much the same thing.  His on field coaching (excluding histrionics) is damn good.  His off field antics and constant pushing the envelope, however, rubs some people the wrong way.  Including the Commissioner of the SEC.  Worth a few minutes of your time to read.

And on the subject of Michigan.....

What's the over/under on when Chris Partridge, the former HC at Paramus Catholic, wears out his welcome at The Big House?  I'm figuring when his last player at PC graduates....and he will no longer have enough connections in New Jersey to make him useful to the Wolverines.

People who are doing it right

A while back, we did a post on athletic directors and their respective football and basketball coaches being top-tier combos.  One of those trios was out of Iowa, where Gary Barta has put/kept together two outstanding programs on the gridiron and hardwood.  And for his troubles, he just got a major extension for some major bucks.

Come on, Pat, make it rain!

It's Spring!  Pitchers and catchers....Pitchers and catchers....Pitchers and catchers....Pitchers and catchers

As Rutgers' baseball team heads to Miami for a weekend set against the Hurricanes, our (cough) friends at Off Tackle Empire have a preview of the Big Ten's baseball squads.  You may find it interesting....if not enjoyable.