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primal defense

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  1. RIP Kobe Bryant killed in helicopter crash in Calabasas https://www.yahoo.com/sports/reports-kobe-bryant-killed-in-helicopter-crash-in-calabasas-194537553.html
  2. I prefer the other way and that's for UT to start winning big time on a regular basis. It makes it tougher for ESPN or anyone else to bad mouth Texas.
  3. Yep, it's too bad. This is the second time McGuire's son has gotten in the way of coming to Texas. Charlie Strong tried to hire him, but his son was in his senior year.
  4. ZACKERY EVANS VS BIJAN ROBINSON, WHO"S NATION'S TOP RB PROSPECT? The 2020 class is one of the deepest in recent memory at the running back position. Zachary Evans has held the top spot for over a year but there’s another back making a strong push for top overall player at the position. There is no doubt Evans is a special talent and he showed exactly why at the recent Under Armour All-American Game that I was at. When breaking him down, there really isn’t weakness in his game and he’s one of those backs that just does everything well. Watching him go through the drills, he just looked different then the other backs and again, the other players in his group were all very talented in their own right. Evans had a different look to him and showed another level of burst, acceleration, balance, feel and vision. He’s a naturally instinctive runner with underrated power. He can finish off a run and pick up the tough yards after contact while showing the quickness and top end speed and to get the edge and out run a defense. He was MVP of the Under Armour Game and looked like the most talented player in the even Unfortunately with Evans, it’s not just about football. He had an up and down year and that’s putting it nicely. There were multiple off the field issues and when it comes to player rankings, you always have to ask the question, how much influence should that factor in? Everyone would agree that character counts but when it comes to players still in high school, it’s tough to project. How much is just immaturity and a player needing to grow up versus a player with serious attitude issues where you know said player will be a locker room detriment. Right now, there are a handful of schools that are betting on Evans. He just visited Ole Miss last weekend and is slated to check out Florida (Jan. 31). According to 247Sports analyst Steve Wiltfong, Florida State and Tennessee are vying for a visit this weekend. Georgia, where Evans initially signed a letter of intent but was later released from it and Texas A&M remain in the mix as well. So saying all that, even if you remove the off field issues with Evans, is he still the nation’s most talented running back? For me, after seeing Tucson (Ariz.) Salpointe Catholic RB and Texas signee Bijan Robinson all week during the Polynesian Bowl, he was every bit as impressive as Evans was a few weeks ago during UA week. Our national staff who saw Robinson at the All-American Bowl in San Antonio also raved about him as well and the two actually have very similar skill sets They’re similar in size, both about 5-11, 6-0 and a solid 200 pounds although Robinson looks a little thicker overall. Robinson is a decisive down hill back, probably more quick then fast but still with plenty enough top end speed to hit the home run from anywhere. He's elusive, can make you miss and is tough to bring down in the open field. He runs through defenders, has plenty of open field wiggle and during the Poly Bowl, looked like a threat to score almost every time he touched the ball. He has elite vision, can change direction and stop and start on a dime. He runs hard consistently and is always attacking the line of scrimmage. The one area Robinson has an edge on not just Evans but every other back in the class is as a pass catcher. Robinson has elite level hands out of the backfield and is good enough as a pass catcher that we would probably rate him as a four-star prospect at receiver if he wasn’t such a good running back. We’ve seen him dominate 7v7 passing events as a receiver and he might be the best pass catching running back to come out of the West since Joe Mixon five years ago. His production is off the charts as well and he averaged an incredible 203 yards a game on nearly 18 yards a carry this past season with 38 touchdowns His off the field work ethic is extremely high and he’s as a high character a kid as you’ll find who could be a future captain for the Longhorns. It’s very close between the two backs. Evans probably has a little bit of an edge in terms of his burst and explosiveness, Robinson is better out of the backfield and might have a small edge in power. Both are talented and have been highly productive their whole high school careers. It's a fun debate and one our recruiting team is still tackling with final rankings slated for release next week
  5. A USC student not too happy with the possible hire of Orlando. LIKELY ORLANDO HIRING UNLIKELY TO SIT WELL WITH TROJAN FAITHFUL It appears that the only slam dunks coming from USC these days are at the hands of superstar freshman forward Onyeka Okongwu, and while I deeply admire the way that USC basketball has quietly turned into a pacific powerhouse this season, it’s clear that its football counterparts can hardly get an easy win with Trojan fans lately. As the dust settled and celebrations ceased after the Trojan basketball team’s dramatic 21-point comeback win over a tough Stanford team at Galen Center last Saturday, reports emerged regarding USC’s defensive coordinator search. Weeks after parting ways with Clancy Pendergast following a 49-24 drubbing at the hands of a mediocre Iowa Hawkeyes offense in the Holiday Bowl, the Trojans are now expected to hire Todd Orlando as their next defensive coordinator. Dismissed earlier in the offseason by Tom Herman in an attempt to rebuild the Longhorn coaching staff in Texas, Orlando landed a spot as the linebackers coach/assistant head coach at Texas Tech before reports arose of his interest in USC. After publicly failing to lure Los Angeles Rams linebackers coach and former USC assistant Joe Barry to the coordinator job, USC quickly pivoted to Orlando with the hopes of injecting new life into the defense and bringing a new face to a battered Trojan recruiting effort. Though he’s certainly not the first choice of many armchair athletic directors — former Seahawks defensive coordinator and Trojan alum Kris Richard was nothing if not the fan favorite — Orlando ultimately appears as another suspect coaching decision for a staff rife with mediocrity and second guessing. Working as a defensive coordinator at five schools over the past 15 years, Orlando has overseen a fairly boom-or-bust slate of defensive units. According to Bill Connelly’s SP+ rankings, a system by which all FBS units are equally rated based on opponents and game flow to judge defensive efficiency, Orlando has had seven teams finish in the top 27 while six units clocked in at 53rd or worse. Despite gaining a reputation for strong initial coaching performances during year one, his defenses have seen a great deal of regression. At Texas, Todd watched as a unit that dominated the Trojans last September and finished that season as the 14th best defense in the nation crumbled due to injury and inflexibility and fell to 68th at the time of his firing in 2019. Possibly the most troubling aspect of the Orlando hiring, however, is the eerie similarities he shares with the departed Pendergast. One of the most important factors in Clancy’s firing was a perceived lack of flexibility and inability to properly develop defensive talent. Running a converted 3-4 defense, Pendergast relied heavily on skilled pass rushers such as Uchenna Nwosu and Porter Gustin, but when the proverbial pass rushing well ran dry, Pendergast did little to adjust. The Trojan defense, among other issues, has become a middle-of-the-road pass rushing team despite the aggressive approach. Considering the youth and inexperience of the defensive backfield for USC in 2019, this was a death knell. On top of all of this, Pendergast’s lack of a grip on recruiting has caused talented local recruits in recent years to slip through the hands of the Trojans, such as current Oregon defensive lineman and former top-ranked recruit Kayvon Thibodeaux and incoming LSU defensive back Elias Ricks among others. In many ways, Orlando mirrored this behavior and reputation at Texas. According to Anwar Richardson, beat writer for the Longhorns Rivals site, “Todd Orlando didn’t adjust his defensive scheme to suit the talent, players were not developed, and he was not a high-level recruiter.” In the simplest terms, this would appear to check every box of what the Trojans should theoretically be avoiding in a Pendergast replacement. That said, it is difficult to argue the merits of fresh blood. For as much as stability, consistency and continuity are great to have in theory, this is a time of upheaval at USC. No one wants a constantly rotating door, but it is clear that the old guard of Heritage Hall is being slowly and painfully churned out in favor of an era of transparency, clarity and — as President Carol Folt and Athletic Director Mike Bohn often point to — integrity. If anything can be sure, the USC fanbase is not sold. As is the case with pretty much anything the Trojans do these days, seeing is believing. Until then, the easy scores will remain on the hardwood. Jimmy Goodman is a senior writing about USC sports. His column, “The Point After,” runs every other Thursday. http://dailytrojan.com/2020/01/23/likely-orlando-hiring-unlikely-to-sit-well-with-trojan-faithful/
  6. THE BEST QB IN EVERY CONFERENCE IN 2020 Big 12: Sam Ehlinger, Texas There's no question the 2019 season wasn't kind to the "Texas is back" crowd. The Longhorns wound up going 8-5 in a season that saw them ravaged by injuries. Head coach Tom Herman wound up firing both coordinators, and there is going to be plenty of newness in Austin throughout 2020. Sam Ehlinger will be the steadying force, though, after electing to return for his senior season. That's huge news, too. He did nothing wrong in a '19 campaign that saw him throw for 3,663 yards, 32 touchdowns and 10 interceptions while completing more than 65 percent of his passes. With Jalen Hurts gone, Ehlinger will get the publicity he deserves. There's still plenty of talent at the position in the Big 12, though. Iowa State's Brock Purdy, Oklahoma State's Spencer Sanders, Baylor's Charlie Brewer and Texas Tech's Jett Duffey could all have big 2020s. But this should be Ehlinger's year. The Longhorns inked Mike Yurcich to be their next offensive coordinator, and he has ties to the conference after serving as Mike Gundy's offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State before he was hired away to be Ohio State's passing game coordinator a year ago. Everyone knows the kind of season Justin Fields had in Columbus last year, and Yurcich's fingerprints were all over that performance. So, what can he do with Ehlinger? The dual-threat playmaker is thought of as a great college quarterback, but his pro stock is all over the map. If he can put together a massive senior season and lead Texas back to prominence, he could really see his NFL stock soar. He could wind up clicking with Yurcich in a big way, and if that happens, the Longhorns would have the talent to enjoy a bounceback season. https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2872067-the-best-returning-qb-in-every-college-football-conference-for-2020#slide3
  7. BOWL GAME OVERRACTIONS Nobody owns an offseason like Texas, and December set the stage for a glorious 2020 for the Longhorns -- at least until games start getting played again. Start with a dominant win over Utah in the Valero Alamo Bowl, just the type of upset victory that gets pundits lathered up for a good offseason narrative. Then quarterback Sam Ehlinger announced a return for 2020. Then rival Oklahoma was utterly embarrassed in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. All the pieces were in place. The Big 12 belonged to Texas in 2020, right? Well, small problems: Texas finished 97th in pass defense, couldn't run the ball consistently and lost at least four games for the 10th straight year. Number of four-loss seasons for Oklahoma in that stretch? One. https://www.espn.com/college-football/story/_/id/28484221/bowl-game-overreactions-thoughts-clemson-texas-michigan-alabama-more
  8. This has been an enjoyable experience with one more hire to go. I like the experience and resume of all the hires except one. That would be Jay Valai and I like what others have said about him. He's had great references on players he's trained including Noah Cain. Ash is listed as the safeties coach and Valai is the cornerback coach. It's probably more accurate that Ash is the defensive back field coach and Valai is his assistant. MEET THE NEW MEMBERS OF THE TEXAS LONGHORNS 2020 FOOTBALL STAFF After Texas’ season-finale cemented a disappointing 7-5 regular season, it didn’t take long for Tom Herman to reconstruct the coaching staff. Herman fired former defensive coordinator Todd Orlando and wide receivers coach Drew Mehringer just two days after the final game of the regular season. Former offensive coordinator Tim Beck was also demoted as Texas began its nation-wide search to fill the numerous coaching jobs on both sides of the ball. The result? A total of six new hires within the span of a month. As 2020 shapes up to be an era-defining year for Herman, let’s take a quick look at the new coaches that his job security will rely on: Chris Ash, defensive coordinator/safeties Texas announced the hiring of Ash on Dec. 17, nearly three months he was fired at Rutgers. Ash went 8-32 at Rutgers, but also has a national championship (2014 Ohio State) and four Big Ten titles as a defensive coordinator on his résumé. This will be the third time Ash and Herman are on the same coaching staff after the two were together at Iowa State in 2009 and Ohio State in 2014. Mike Yurcich, offensive coordinator/quarterbacks Yurcich was brought on after helping Justin Fields and Ohio State to a 13-1 record as the passing game coordinator and quarterbacks coach. The Buckeyes weren’t only third in scoring offense in 2019, but they set the school’s single-season record by averaging 46.9 points per game. Yurich also spent six years with Mike Gundy when Oklahoma State averaged 38 points and 478.3 yards per game during his stint. Jay Valai, cornerbacks Herman decided to replace cornerbacks coach Jason Washington with Jay Valai, who was on Ash’s staff at Rutgers where he coached the cornerbacks. Valai spent the 2018 season as a defensive quality control and assistant defensive backs coach for the Kansas City Chiefs. He was also the defensive quality control coach at Georgia in 2016 and in 2017 when the Bulldogs made a run to the national championship Andre Coleman, wide receivers Texas promoted Coleman to wide receivers coach after spending most of 2019 as an analyst for the Longhorns. Coleman has experience at Kansas State as a wide receivers coach, passing game coordinator and eventually an offensive coordinator before he headed to Texas. Coleman was named the interim coach for bowl prep, but now he will officially replace Drew Mehringer. Jay Boulware, associate head coach/tight ends Herman hired Boulware just two weeks after Derek Warehime took the offensive coordinator job at New Mexico. Boulware spent the last seven years with Bob Stoops and Lincoln Riley at Oklahoma. He served as the special teams coordinator as well as the running backs coach for the first five seasons and tight ends coach in the last two. Boulware is a former Longhorn both as a player (1991-93) and as a student coach (1994-95) and eventually a graduate assistant (1996). Coleman Hutzler, co-defensive coordinator/linebackers Hutzler joins Texas after spending the last four years as the linebackers coach and special teams coordinator at South Carolina. He was nominated for the Broyles Award, which is given to the top assistant coach in the nation. Hutzler will assist Ash as a co-defensive coordinator but will also serve as the linebackers coach. https://www.dallasnews.com/sports/texas-longhorns/2020/01/22/meet-the-new-members-of-texas-staff/
  9. THE LSU CHAMPIONSHIP GAME FURTHER EXPOSED THE NCAA'S HYPOCRISY https://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2020/01/odell-beckham-jr-and-lsu-highlighted-ncaa-unfairness/605314/?utm_medium=offsite&utm_source=yahoo&utm_campaign=yahoo-non-hosted&yptr=yahoo
  10. THE TOP 10 REMAINING TARGETS FOR THIS CYCLE OF COLLEGE FOOTBALL RECRUITING Five-star RB Zachary Evans (uncommitted) 247Sports Composite ranking: No. 9 The wildest recruitment of the 2020 cycle, Evans was seemingly pointed towards LSU before signing with Georgia in the early signing period. Before publicly announcing that Georgia commitment, Evans got cold feet and asked out of his letter of intent. Georgia obliged and now there's really no telling where he lands. Ole Missgot him on campus for an official visit last weekend. He could head to Tennessee or Florida this weekend. Texas A&M has also continued to linger, and don't be surprised if Georgia resurfaces as a landing spot by the time we reach February. Four-star DL Alfred Collins (uncommitted) 247Sports Composite ranking: No. 72 A massive defensive lineman who posted a monster senior season, Collins has emerged late as one of the top priorities nationally but has seen his recruitment whittle down to a Texas, Alabama and Oklahoma race. His mother played basketball at Texas and the Longhorns hold all of the current 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions, but he has indicated a desire to squeeze in visits to Oklahoma and Alabama around his basketball schedule before making a decision in February. https://www.cbssports.com/college-football/news/national-signing-day-2020-the-top-10-remaining-targets-for-this-cycle-of-college-football-recruiting/
  11. I wouldn't bet on that. McGuire finished second for the HC position, so I don't think he will want to hang around. Current Bears players are pushing for Baylor associate head coach Joey McGuire to be elevated to the top spot. McGuire, a one-time head coach at Cedar Hill High School, has worked for Rhule for three seasons. https://www.lubbockonline.com/sports/20200107/itrsquos-official-carolina-lands-baylorrsquos-matt-rhule-as-bear-players-push-for-joey-mcguire-as-next-coach
  12. Texas The heat around Shaka Smart is growing after a disastrous trip to Morgantown on Monday night. Texas was down 45-20 at halftime and trailed by as many as 43 in an ugly 97-59 loss to West Virginia, after which Smart said his team "didn't have the level of fight we needed to have for a lot of things on both ends of the floor." It was the fifth-worst defeat in program history and the worst under Smart, and comes in the middle of a critical year for the fifth-year coach. The 12-6 Longhorns have a thin résumé outside of a road win over Purdue, aren't currently projected to be an NCAA tournament team and seem to lack the offensive firepower needed to change that. Smart entered this year on the hot seat, and his time in Austin could come to a swift close if things don't improve in the season's final two months. https://www.si.com/college/2020/01/21/stock-report-louisville-duke-rutgers-shaka-smart
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