Big 12 lunch links: Will new ejection rule curb defensive hits?

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin

Even though practice is just starting, the lunchtime links are already in mid-season form.

Check out a few links from across the conference:

  • The Austin American-Statesman's Kirk Bohls wonders if the new NCAA ejection rule may cause defenses to become more tentative.

  • Baylor hopes to boost its pass rush with a young group of defensive ends after posting only 21 sacks last season, John Werner of the Waco Tribune-Herald reports.

  • Former Kansas State coach Ron Prince is seeking $3 million in punitive damages in addition to his $3.2 million contract buyout negotiated after he left the school, the Topeka Capital-Journal's Austin Meek reports.

  • The Oklahoman's John Helsley writes about Oklahoma State wide receiver Dez Bryant's potential as a Heisman Trophy candidate and his recovery from a disappointing Holiday Bowl loss that turned on his knee injury.

  • Kyle Ringo of the Boulder Daily Camera reports that finding a replacement for Josh Smith on kick returns is only one of the questions facing Colorado special teams coach Kent Riddle.

  • Even after contentious contract renegotiations, Texas Tech coach Mike Leach is back for more high-powered passing and hijinks, the Denver Post's John Henderson writes.

  • Lawrence Journal-World blogger Johann Ross wonders if Bill Self and Mark Mangino is the best coaching combination for a major basketball/football program.

  • Gary Pinkel tells the St. Louis Post-Dispatch's Gerry Fraley that his team this season will be the fastest he's coached at Missouri.

  • Nebraska I-back Quentin Castille tells the Lincoln Journal-Star's Steve Sipple that he's rejuvenated after returning home for several weeks during his team's summer workouts.

  • Ryan Tannehill hopes to win Texas A&M's starting quarterback job, but he tells the Houston Chronicle/San Antonio Express-News' Brent Zwerneman he wants to move back to receiver if he doesn't beat out Jerrod Johnson.

  • Oklahoma middle linebacker Ryan Reynolds is 10 pounds lighter as he attempts a comeback from a devastating knee injury sustained last season, the Tulsa World's Guerin Emig reports.

  • The Des Moines Register's Randy Peterson has an interesting chat on Iowa State football, including Paul Rhoads' troubles in picking out ripe melons and whether the Cyclones can stick with Iowa on Sept. 12.