Big 12 links: Give him a question and Leach has an opinion
Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin
There's a reason why Texas Tech coach Mike Leach is easily the most quotable coach in the Big 12.
Leach was sizzling on Monday while talking about a variety of subjects in several media sessions.
He started on the Big 12's weekly teleconference by describing how his team rode out a storm that dumped buckets of water at Jones AT&T Stadium before last Saturday's game against SMU. "We ought to do a commercial for Field Turf," Leach said.
Later in the call, Leach had a well-reasoned take why his program has never developed an NFL starting quarterback and why NFL coaches might be looking for the wrong qualities in a quarterback.
"Those guys may think they are really good coaches or whatever, but they are not going to make a guy accurate. Name one guy the NFL has ever made accurate," Leach said. "They don't make any of them accurate.
But he was only getting started. While talking with his local media in Lubbock a couple of hours later, Leach lit into his quarterbacks and wide receivers for their inconsistent play. That blast was notable because his two best players are QB Graham Harrell, the defending Baugh Award trophy winner, and WR Michael Crabtree, who set virtually every national freshman record en route to winning the Biletnikoff Award last season.
Leach's comments were telling, but not surprising from those who have been around him over the years.
The Red Raiders lead the nation in passing, rank second in total offense and are 15th in scoring, but those statistics mask what Leach feels is struggling play. And if it continues, Leach told the reporters, the Red Raiders are in "for a long year."
Harrell was blasted even though he threw five touchdowns and passed for 418 yards in an impressive 43-7 victory over SMU. And Crabtree was blistered despite catching eight receptions for 164 yards, including three touchdowns.
"What we've done, quite honestly, for 2 1/2 games I don't consider acceptable," Leach said. "I don't know at what point they think we arrived. This group of quarterbacks and receivers, we haven't done anything impressive. I don't think it's impressive at all other than some numbers inflated by some explosiveness and the efforts of others. As far as any steadiness, there's nothing impressive."
Hopefully, Leach doesn't have anything to say about these links.
- Welcome to the unofficial Big 12-Big East challenge this week, with both conferences getting increased national visibility this week with prime-time games on three nights leading up to Saturday.
- Oklahoma State's week off shouldn't hurt the Cowboys' surging momentum, according to coach Mike Gundy.
- Being No. 2 in both national polls is nice, but Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops dismisses the hype of his program's highest ranking in four seasons.
- Eighteen scholarship members of the Texas team had relatives who were impacted by Hurricane Ike. But none as much as offensive coordinator Greg Davis, who opened his Austin home for a houseful of relatives relocating from the Beaumont-Port Arthur area. And Texas coach Mack Brown offered to allow Rice to use the Longhorns' practice facilities preparing for their game on Saturday if they need them.
- WR Ryan Tannehill's iffy status is just as big a concern for Texas A&M as is QB Stephen McGee's condition for Saturday's game against Miami.
- Kansas State coach Ron Prince lives by the credo of coaching smart, not scared.
- Missouri S William Moore's aggravating foot injury has him considering sitting out this week against Buffalo.
- The Omaha World Herald's Tom Shatel says to look for an announcement soon of a series between Nebraska and Wyoming. The first game would be played at Invesco Field in Denver.
- Nebraska held New Mexico State scoreless on three of four drives inside the Cornhuskers' 3-yard line. That's coming after the Cornhuskers made only five of 61 red-zone stops last season.
- Colorado hopes to boost running game production against West Virginia.
- Iowa State coach Gene Chizik is concerned with his team's struggles in short-yardage situations.
- Topeka Capital-Journal reporter Tully Corcoran lists 10 reasons why Kansas' running game struggled mightily at South Florida.
- Baylor coach Art Briles told the student newspaper, The Lariat, that he was surprised Robert Griffin's 217-yard rushing effort against Washington State was a school record.
BIG 12 SCOREBOARD
Final Nevada 3 Louisiana-Lafayette 16 Final Utah State 21 UTEP 6 Final 22 Utah 45 Colorado State 10 Final Western Michigan 24 Air Force 38 Final South Alabama 28 Bowling Green 33
Final Marshall 52 Northern Illinois 23 Final Navy 17 San Diego State 16
Final Central Michigan 48 Western Kentucky 49 Final Fresno State 6 Rice 30
1:00 PM ET Illinois Louisiana Tech 4:30 PM ET Rutgers North Carolina 8:00 PM ET North Carolina State UCF
1:00 PM ET Cincinnati Virginia Tech 2:00 PM ET 15 Arizona State Duke 3:30 PM ET Miami (FL) South Carolina 4:30 PM ET Boston College Penn State 8:00 PM ET Nebraska 24 USC
2:00 PM ET Texas A&M West Virginia 5:30 PM ET Oklahoma 17 Clemson 9:00 PM ET Arkansas Texas
3:00 PM ET Notre Dame 23 LSU 6:30 PM ET 13 Georgia 21 Louisville 10:00 PM ET Maryland Stanford
12:30 PM ET 9 Ole Miss 6 TCU 4:00 PM ET 20 Boise State 10 Arizona 8:00 PM ET 7 Mississippi State 12 Georgia Tech
12:00 PM ET 19 Auburn 18 Wisconsin 12:30 PM ET 8 Michigan State 5 Baylor 1:00 PM ET 16 Missouri 25 Minnesota 5:00 PM ET 2 Oregon 3 Florida State 8:30 PM ET 1 Alabama 4 Ohio State
12:00 PM ET Houston Pittsburgh 3:20 PM ET Iowa Tennessee 6:45 PM ET 11 Kansas State 14 UCLA 10:15 PM ET Washington Oklahoma State