Big 12 Media Days: Best of Day 1

July, 26, 2011
7/26/11
9:00
AM ET
Time to pass out a few awards from Day 1 of Big 12 Media Days.

Before we do, here's the schedule for Day 2 (all times ET):

Texas Tech: 12 p.m.
Kansas: 12:20 p.m.
Iowa State: 12:40 p.m.
Kansas State: 1 p.m.
Oklahoma: 1:20 p.m.

Players and coaches will be made available for one-on-one interviews later in the afternoon, and commissioner Dan Beebe is scheduled to address the media along with the coaches at 4 p.m.

[+] EnlargeOklahoma State coach Mike Gundy
Kevin Jairaj/US PRESSWIREOklahoma State coach Mike Gundy was the best dressed on Day 1 of Big 12 Media Days.
On to the awards:

Best one-liner: Art Briles, Baylor

Briles, on his quarterback speaking confidently about his team and perhaps turning opposing fans off in the process: "You know, talking trash to my nephew or talking trash -- you talking trash to your nephew might be two different things. It's kind of in the ear of the beholder."

Second-best one-liner: Mack Brown, Texas

A reporter began his question with "So much has been made of this Longhorn Network and maybe some high school games--" and was interrupted by the Longhorns coach, who interjected with a, "Really?"

Third-best one-liner: Art Briles, Baylor

Briles recalled a weather delay in the middle of the Bears' tilt against Kansas State, which eventually ended in Baylor becoming bowl-eligible. His thoughts, which he reminded the media he was serious about?

“I was thinking, ‘Boy, it’s hard to get bowl eligible at Baylor,’” he said. “They’re making it hard on us.”

Fourth-best one-liner: Art Briles, Baylor

I asked Briles about Robert Griffin III's reputation for speaking his mind (confidently), and the Bears coach responded with a comparison to famed sprinter Edwin Moses, capped by asking yours truly if I knew who the gap-toothed track star was (I did, and do).

"He's not low stepping when he's crossing that finish line. His knee's up and he's stepping long and he's stepping pretty," Briles said. "Robert talking trash is to me just being a confident athlete that has reality to back up what he's saying. I mean, shoot, he's not worried about what people are thinking about what he's saying; he's worried about producing on the football field. And he's a mature enough person to understand that what he says he has the ability to back up, which he does."

Fifth-best one-liner (Hey, there were a lot of good ones. Deal with it.): Mack Brown, Texas

"My wife told me there's most hotels that don't even have a 13th floor, and last year was my 13th year (at Texas) so I should have skipped it," Brown said. "Some people thought I did."

Best dressed: Mike Gundy, Oklahoma State

While some of his other coaching brethren fell back on turtlenecks and team polos, Gundy broke out a pinstripe suit with an orange tie, complete with an orange pocket square.

Strongest gesture: Texas A&M

The Aggie brass has voiced its disapproval of the Longhorn Network in the past week, and on Monday, coach Mike Sherman and his five-man player contingent declined an interview request from the network, which was shooting interviews in a separate room like other national television channels such as ESPN, ESPNU and Fox Sports.

"We didn't see a need to take care of them on a separate basis," said Texas A&M spokesman Alan Cannon, who noted that they spoke with media from Norman and Oklahoma City in the media room designated for local TV. He added that he felt speaking with the Longhorn Network "wasn't appropriate."

Baylor also didn't speak with the network, but Bears officials said they were prevented from doing so because of time constraints.

Weakest gesture: Tommy Tuberville, Texas Tech

These are crucial days for the Big 12, and the league unveiled its branding initiative early Monday evening by introducing each of the Big 12 coaches and a slogan around the Big 12's new tagline, "How We Play."

Tuberville, however, was the only coach in the league not present. He was at a golf event elsewhere in the metroplex with Texas Tech alumni. Texas A&M is the central figure in the most recent Big 12 dustup, but the league could have used a truly united front.

Most (least?) impactful shift: Texas A&M's fan base

The "Texas A&M to the SEC" talk took a backseat to Longhorn Network talk on Monday, but I asked Texas A&M officials what percentage of the fan base would support a move to the SEC.

My estimation was 60 percent, based on interactions, emails and comments I've heard from Aggies fans. They agreed that the number was somewhere in the 60 percent ball park, adding that it was up to that number from probably 30-40 percent last summer, when a move to the SEC was a possibility.

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Friday, 12/26
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Thursday, 1/1
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