Friday, May 1, 2009
Big 12 lunch links: Of Red Square parades and spring games
Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin
This is going to date me, but I can remember back when May 1 meant one thing.
That was the day I could always count on tuning on the evening news and seeing the newest collection of aircraft, tanks and other armaments being showcased in a huge parade in Red Square in Moscow. The Communists used to use International Worker's Day to display the country's military forces and to honor themselves.
Thankfully, the fears of that Cold War era have abated in recent years. But I've got to believe that some football fans view spring games of rival teams in much the same way.
Don't some Texas fans feel the way I used to when Oklahoma trots out its collection of athletes during the spring game to show off what they can do? Maybe a feeling of fear and dread, but still measuring up to what my team or country might have.
Or that Sooners have similar feelings when they watch the Longhorns conduct their spring game work? Or that a Kansas fan might feel that way if he happened to stumble into Bill Snyder Family Stadium tomorrow afternoon for Kansas State's spring game?
Fortunately, we won't see any military parades in Red Square today.
But we do have some tasty Big 12 lunchtime links. Enjoy them and the weekend.
- Guerin Emig of the Tulsa World had a great story this morning about Oklahoma scout team running back Derek Gove, who earned the highest cumulative grade-point average among Sooner seniors. Gove had a unique description of his job as a scout-team running back.
"Most of the guys wake up Sunday morning like they've been hit by a train," Gove told the World. "I woke up Monday morning feeling that way. And Tuesday morning, Wednesday morning and Thursday morning."
- Mack Brown won't be attending next week's Big 12 coaches' meeting in Phoenix where the conference's tiebreaker rule for conference titles will be discussed, according to Dallas Morning News Big 12 reporter Chuck Carlton. Brown's wife, Sally, will be undergoing surgery on her wrist next week.
- Despite his background as a passing game coordinator, don't expect new Colorado offensive coordinator Eric Kiesau to forget about the Buffaloes' imposing rushing attack, Boulder Camera reporter Ryan Thorburn writes.
- Former Nebraska center Brett "Bama" Byford has shed 80 pounds since the end of his football career and will run his first marathon Sunday, Lincoln Journal-Star columnist Steve Sipple reports.
- Former Iowa State standout Ellis Hobbs promised his mother he would get his college degree, even after leaving for an NFL career. Randy Peterson of the Des Moines Register writes about his upcoming May 9 graduation.
- Grant Wistrom told Rich Kaipust of the Omaha World-Herald that he was shocked after learning earlier this week that he would be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
- One of Steve McMichael's most cherished college football memories came when Billy Sims didn't want to come out to play for the fourth quarter of the Longhorns' 1979 victory over Oklahoma, Suzanne Halliburton of the Austin American-Statesman reports.
- Bill Snyder isn't a big fan of spring games, but he's staging one to entertain Kansas State fans, according to Topeka Capital-Journal beat writer Austin Meek.
- Gary Pinkel is still awaiting word whether heralded defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson will be able to enroll at Missouri or will be steered to a junior college to academically qualify, the Columbia Daily Tribune's Dave Matter writes.